Dark faced burnished ware (Redirected from DFBW)

Vessel of 'Dark Faced Burnished Ware' from Shir, in Syria

Dark Faced Burnished Ware or DFBW is the earliest form of pottery developed in the western world.[1]

It was produced after the earliest examples from the independent phenomenon of the Jōmon culture in Japan and is predominantly found at archaeological sites in Lebanon, Israel southwest Syria[2][3][4][5] and Cyprus. [6] Some notable examples of Dark Faced Burnished Ware were found at Tell Judaidah (and nearby Tell Dhahab) in Amuq by Robert Braidwood as well as at Ras Shamra and Tell Boueid.[7] Other finds have been made at Yumuktepe in Mersin, Turkey where comparative studies were made defining different categories of ware that have been generally grouped as DFBW.[8] It is thought to have come as a development of White Ware and takes its name from the often dark coloured choice of clays from which it is made. Vessels are often coarse, tempered with grit or sand, burnished to a shiny finish and made with a variety of clays in different areas.[1] The grit or sand is thought to have made the vessels easier to fire and the burnishing made them less permeable and suitable for heated liquid substances.[1] Later examples are usually finer and more carefully burnished and decorated.[9] Designs included rounded, inverted or straight sided bowls with plain rims, some with basic handles under the rims along with ring bases in the later pieces.[10] Decorations included incised or impressed chevrons or motifs with pattern burnishing appearing in later periods.[1] Other types of pottery were produced around the same time including coarse impressed ware, dark faced unburnished ware and washed impressed ware but these were less prevalent.[1]

DFBW has long been considered the forebear of the more polished examples such as Ancient Greek pottery.[7]


  1. ^ a b c d e Peter M. M. G. Akkermans; Glenn M. Schwartz (2003). The archaeology of Syria: from complex hunter-gatherers to early urban societies (c. 16,000-300 BC). Cambridge University Press. pp. 134–. ISBN 978-0-521-79666-8. Retrieved 8 April 2011.
  2. ^ Douglas M. Kenrick (1995). Jomon of Japan: the world's oldest pottery. Kegan Paul International. ISBN 978-0-7103-0475-9. Retrieved 9 April 2011.
  3. ^ Richard J. Pearson; Gina Lee Barnes; Karl L. Hutterer (1986). Windows on the Japanese past: studies in archaeology and prehistory. Center for Japanese Studies, University of Michigan. ISBN 978-0-939512-23-2. Retrieved 9 April 2011.
  4. ^ Mellart, James, The Neolithic of the Near East, p. 64, Scribner, 1975.
  5. ^ Mary Settegast (1 January 2000). Plato prehistorian: 10,000 to 5000 B.C. : myth, religion, archaeology. Lindisfarne Press. ISBN 978-0-940262-34-8. Retrieved 9 April 2011.
  6. ^ Joanne Clarke. Insularity and identity in prehistoric Cyprus, in : Le néolithique de Chypre: actes du colloque international organisé par le Dé partement des antiquités de Chypre et l’École française d’Athènes, Nicosie, 17–19 mai 2001. École Française d’Athènes, Athens.
  7. ^ a b A. Issar; Mattanyah Zohar (2004). Climate change: environment and civilization in the Middle East. Springer. pp. 71–. ISBN 978-3-540-21086-3. Retrieved 9 April 2011.
  8. ^ Francesca Balossi Restelli (2006). The development of 'cultural regions' in the neolithic of the Near East: the 'dark faced burnished ware horizon'. Archaeopress. ISBN 978-1-84171-917-7. Retrieved 9 April 2011.
  9. ^ Council for British Research in the Levant; British School of Archaeology in Jerusalem; British Institute at Amman for Archaeology and History (1994). Levant. British School of Archaeology in Jerusalem. Retrieved 9 April 2011.
  10. ^ Moore, A.M.T. (1978). The Neolithic of the Levant. Oxford University, Unpublished Ph.D. Thesis. pp. 192–198.

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