Glossary

Aplastic - Non-plastic inclusions in clay. May be natural or added (temper)

Base - The bottom portion of a vessel, that comes in contact with the surface it rests on during normal use. These are usually rounded or pointed but flat and ring bases are also seen. 

Body Fabric- The mixture of clay and inclusions (temper) used to form vessels.

Clay - Fine grained sediment, with a particle size of less than .002mm which is malleable and plastic when wet, and which forms a ceramic when fired. 

Coil Construction -- A manufacturing technique involving the forming and joining of
narrow coils of clay to create the walls of a vessel. 

Cord Impressed - Decoration on pottery made by directly pressing cord against the wet paste in patterns. This is a "decoration." Not common in South Carolina.

Cord-Marked - Cord impressions left when a cord wrapped paddle was used to malleate the coils. This is a "surface treatment."

Earthenware - Low fired, porous pottery.

Fabric-Impressed - Woven textiles applied like cord marking. A surface treatment. Both bunched fabric with soft cordage for the weft and warp, and fabric with a rigid warp were used. see also Net Impressed and Textile Impressed.

Fire cloud - An area of a vessel that is darker due to a reduced firing atmosphere in a small area. May be caused by contact with another vessel, for instance.

Incised - A stylus is used to scratch lines into the body. Can be applied to wet or dry clay. A decoration.

Inclusions - See aplastics. 

Kaolin - Kaolin is a white clay used in porcelain manufacture. Matures at a high temperature.

Lip - The top edge of the vessel mouth. Part of the rim.

Lug Handle - Flat semi-circular protrusion added for lifting. 

Neck - The section of a vessel between the body and the rim on vessels with constriction.

Net-Impressed - Like fabric impressed, but the textile is knotted together rather than weaved 

Node - appliqued pellet

Notched - Single lines on the rim or collar of the vessel.

Oxidation - When fired in an oxygen-rich firing atmosphere earthenwares turn a uniform reddish color.

Paste - Like body fabric, the mixture of clay and inclusions used to form a vessel.

Punctate - Various objects are used to poke small indentations into the body.

Reduction Atmosphere - Oxygen-poor firing atmosphere that results in the retention of
organic material and a darker color than oxidizing atmospheres.

Rim - The upper portion of the vessel, including the lip. 

Sherd - A fragment of a broken vessel.

Shoulder- The upper part of the body of a restricted rim vessel, or the portion between the maximum diameter and the rim.

Temper - An agent purposely added to the paste in order to strengthen the clay, and
improve its workability. 

Type - Pottery that shares attributes on a non-random basis. Sometimes used
interchangeably with ware or series, but often refers to specific decorative motifs or
treatments within a series or ware group. 

Ware Group - A cluster of pottery types that share similar methods of manufacture, body fabric and vessel form.