The Joy of Museums

Finding Beauty & Meaning in Museums

Korean Neolithic Pot


This Korean Neolithic Pot shows a raised design which was created by attaching strips of clay to the surface of the poy and by pinching the outer surface to produce thin ridges. It has a full mouth that tapers down to a narrow base. Below the mouth, a clay band has been attached, which is decorated with fingernail impressions. The horizontal band that covers the top half of the vessel surface is divided into a series of triangular panels, which are filled with narrowly raised band decorations.

Pottery with applique decoration

This example was created during the Jeulmun Pottery Period which is an archaeological era in Korean prehistory broadly spanning the period of 8000–1500 BC. The Jeulmun pottery period is named after the decorated pottery vessels that form a large part of the pottery created over this period. Jeulmun means “Comb-patterned”. Because of the early presence of pottery, the entire period has also been subsumed under a broad label of “Korean Neolithic”. The people of the Jeulmun practised a broad spectrum economy of hunting, gathering, foraging, and small-scale cultivation of wild plants. It was during the Jeulmun that the cultivation of millet and rice was introduced to the Korean peninsula from the Asian continent.

Korean Neolithic Pot:

  • Name:                              Korean Neolithic Pot
  • Period:                             Neolithic Period (6000 to 4000 BCE)
  • Provenance:                   Busan
  • Materials:                       Clay
  • Dimensions:                   H. 45.0cm
  • Museum:                         National Museum of Korea


“Even monkeys fall from trees.”
원숭이도 나무에서 떨어진다 Korean Proverb



Photo Credit: 1) By Good friend100 at English Wikipedia (Transferred from en.wikipedia to Commons.) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons 2) By Grampus (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons