This is the most spectacular of a small group of fish-form vessels, all representing the ‘bulti’-fish common in the Nile and a standard feature of Egyptian decorative art. It was found in a medium-sized private house at El-Amarna, buried under a plaster floor together with two glass jugs and some metal objects.
The body is core-built in blue glass with a matt finish, and is decorated with simple festoons in groups of three or four white lines followed by a yellow line. The tail decorations are in the same colors. The dorsal fin is composed of a series of heavy threads in the body (blue, white, yellow, and turquoise-blue). The front fins are each composed of one light and one darker blue thread.
The front ventral fins are made from one white and one yellow thread each while the rear ventral fin is of turquoise-blue glass. A yellow thread outlines the mouth. The eyes are white opaque circles with the pupils represented by black thread loops. The fish is assembled from several fragments.
New Kingdom, 18th Dynasty, Amarna Period, reign of Akhenaten, ca. 1353-1336 BC. Polychrome glass. From the Collections of the British Museum, London. EA 55193