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Belarusian Pottery Varieties and Their Use

Feb 9, 2008
One of the most ancient crafts on Earth is the art of pottery. The domains which are well-known as Belarus from pre-historic times prepared the Belarusian Potteries. The Slavic ethnic groups reconciled here since VII century. They understood as well as imbibed the culture of the Baltic ethnic groups that inhabited these lands before like the Yatviangians, Lits etc. The Slavic and Baltics together developed the Belarusian ceramics tradition. In the X century potter's wheel first appeared in their land. Prior to the introduction of the wheel, hand plastered ceramics were made there. In Paniamonnie, hand plastering techniques have continued to exist to this day. The foremost hub of ceramic crafts in Belarus were the prehistoric Belarusian cities of Polacak, Turau, Smaliensk and the numerous other towns of Paniamonnie. During the days of Kievan Rus the most stylish ceramic convention developed.

There are different types of ceramic vessels made in Belarus. Some of them are described in the following lines:

Sparysh: -

It is a dual or triple vessel of identical or different volume and it has one big grip on apex. Sparysh is used to bring food into pasture to operational peasants during the day.

Sloi or sloik:-

It is a kind of large as well as tall vessel with a broad orifice. It is designed to be enclosed with plaster or wrapped on apex. These were the earliest containers with a capacity up to 20 Liters.


It is a bottomless ceramic serving dish. It is commonly used to eat foodstuff. Miska is one of the ancient varieties of ceramic creation since the "Bronze Age" on the region of Belarus. The most idiosyncratic were prepared as palivanaia and chorna-zadymlenaia ceramics. They were in general robustly decorated.

Makacer: - It is used to grind poppy seed. It has a small pot with tapered base and broad mouth. It has a sharp stick which actually helps in grinding the poppy seeds.

Harshok: - It has less broad mouth and it is bigger than makacer. It is the most important ceramic pot used in food preparation. The Belarusian people mostly cook their food in a harshok.

Latooshka: - It is a conventional broad ceramic serving dish with high sides, primarily used to cook meat. It is encircling or elliptical in shape.

Zban: - It is a ceramic container for liquid or a water jug used to stock up liquids. It has a broad mouth and a single holder. A Zban without a holder is termed as Harlach

Kvetnik: - It is not exactly like a small harlach or Zban. It is a pot used to put flowers.

Hliak: - It is a round pitcher with a narrow mouth. It is used to hoard and carry oil, water as well as other drinks.

Chorna-zadymlenaya: - It is the most famous and ancient type of 'black- smoked' pottery. This pottery was produced in the Iron Age.

Chorna-hliancavanaia: - It is a variation of the previous one. However it is less ancient and one of the most widespread potteries of Belarus.

Hartavanaia: - These ceramics are immersed into a liquid substance called 'abvara', so that the porosity of the ceramic is lessened. In XIX and early XX centuries, the potters of Central and Northern Belarus used this pottery.

Palivanaia: - It is a glossy ceramic sheltered with a slight gasified layer called 'paliva' to enhance its beauty as well as strength.

Thus we get to know some of the most famous potteries of Belarus in this article.
About the Author
Victor Epand is an expert consultant for pottery, antiques, and figurines. When shopping for pottery, antiques and figurines, we recommend only the best online stores for Belarusian Pottery, antiques , and figurines
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