"Each part of the world recapitulates, shares in and experiences the history of the world as a whole"
Fernand Braudel

Pottery Jug

datation
13th-14th century AD
provenance
Al-'Asharah
area
period
materials
themes

It is pottery vessel with a bulbous body and a simple base. The body is ornamented at the lower part with a band of vertical lines, and around the shoulder with a more extensively ornamented band featuring incised designs of knot patterns, geometric designs, and two circular frames containing the sign of the Polo stick. 

This sign is found on many vessels and belongs to the Mamluk period. Polo originated in Central Asia where it was a widely practiced sport that served to train warriors in skillful horsemanship. It was practiced by dividing horsemen into two teams and who had to throw the ball with a long stick – the Polo stick.

The sport of polo spread throughout the region during the Crusader wars, giving the Muslim chivalry an advantage as the warrior horsemen were trained for speedy shifts of direction between attack and retreat, while simultaneously taking aim and shooting arrows or jousting or even hand-combat while on horseback. Practicing the sport of polo was one of the most important trainings for the warriors, thus the image of the polo sticks was a familiar and meaningful visual sign in the culture of chivalry.

see also