Clay is an aluminium silicate that contains some metal and alkaline. It can be separated into some different kinds according to their atomic structure and chemical components. Clay minerals has a stratified structure and can be in the forms of flake, plate or pin.
In the Near East, pottery was first used in Anatolia, Syria, and northern Mesopotamia nearly 8200 years ago and, with some exceptions, diffused everywhere in the Old World in a short period of time for the human history; two thousand years. Pottery is divided into different ware groups in accord with their making technique, shape and decoration. Geographical and historical distribution of this groups is used for understanding relative chronology when absolute chronology is not available -even when absolute chronology is available. Many times, changes in making technique and shape of pottery reflect cultural change. According to clay sources that can be defined with clay analysis of pottery, some trade routes and cultural relations can be understood better.
There are two ways of shaping clay for making vessels: Making by hand or using a wheel. Many different ways can be used in hand work. The wheel can be turned by hand or by foot or by both.
Before surface procedure, vessel is usually left to dry one or two days. Surface can shine like polished or be mat according to burnishing. Slip or wash can be used for decorating. Glaze is a metallic silicate and usually applied like slip. In prehistoric pottery, decoration is usually made before the vessel gets dry. Stamping and incising decoration is usually common. Kiln is not very necessary to fire a vessel. Many times just fire is enough.
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