Canaanite Alabaster Jar, Middle Bronze Age, 1850-1550 B.C.

This little vase made of alabaster, a scarce and high quality material, shows the relationship of the Canaanite people with Egypt. It was probably used as a funerary trousseau or as part of a set of ritual vessels, and could contain ointments or oils of high quality that were available in this type of material as alabaster was fresher than terracotta. The territory of Canaan was since 4000 BC the connection between East and West. It was inhabited by very diverse peoples, such as Amorites, Jebusites, Hyksos, Philistines, Phoenicians, Arameans and Hebrews, who finally conquered the territory. From settlements like Jericho, Ugarit, Tyre or Damascus, the Canaanites were dedicated to trade with the neighboring lands of Mesopotamia or Egypt. More than one thousand two hundred kilometers could be crossed on foot by the Canaanite clans to reach their destinations. The routes ran from Mesopotamia to Egypt, where family groups loaded with goods for exchange would travel.


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