Dayan Collection

A mourning female figurine holds her head in grief. This terra-cotta figurine, almost 3 ¾ inches (10 cm) tall, is assumed to have come from the 12th- to 11th-century B.C. cemetery of Tell ‘Aitun, where some tombs contained Philistine pottery.

The figurine was originally mounted on the rim of a krater, a large, two handled bowl. The base of the figurine retains the negative impression of the krater rim.

Executed with a combination of applique modeling and incision, the figure has a rough naturalistic style. A long open dress reveals the naked body. The raised arms continue the line of the long sleeved garment.

Several features distinguish this mourning woman from Canaanite figurines: the modeling in the round, the dress, the position of the hands, and the mounting on the krater rim. Similar mourning figures of Mycenaean origin have been found at Perati on the east coast of Greece, and at Rhodes, Crete and Cyprus.