Calefattoio vase

The calefattoio vase is a container of various shapes, in use between the Recent Bronze Age and the Iron Age, with internal raised attachments used as supports for another pottery container that was was thus held far enough away from the heat and not in direct contact with the embers. In Nuragic villages is was used in the home, as a base for cooking or heating food, close to fireplaces or directly in contact with the embers, where it has often been found mixed with layers of ashes and coal. A calefattoio vase was discovered inside well c of hut 135 in the village of Barumini, together with other pottery, coal and ashes, and animal remains,  (figs. 1, 2, 3, 4), in the shape of a spherical cap, with two opposite handles. Three attachments, now broken, were set on the rim and decorated with relief ribbing, that continues to the outside in the handle. Inside it contained fragments of deer antlers.

Fig. 1 - Su Nuraxi, calefattoio vase found in room 135 (from Paglietti 1955, table LXXII).
Figs. 2, 3, 4 - Archaeological area of Su Nuraxi, calefattoio vase found in room 135 (from Paglietti 2011, fig. 4).

The artefact can be seen in the exhibition at Casa Zapata in Barumini.



  • CAMPUS F., LEONELLI V., La tipologia della ceramica nuragica. Il materiale edito, Viterbo 2000, pp. 742-745.
  • LILLIU G., Il nuraghe di Barumini e la stratigrafia nuragica, in Studi Sardi, XXII-XXIII, 1955, pp. 444-445, tav. LXXII.
  • PAGLIETTI G., Analisi del corredo ceramico dei pozzetti della capanna 135 di Su Nuraxi (Barumini, Cagliari), in Rivista di Scienze Preistoriche, LXI, 2011, pp. 215-230.