What is a Bowl?
A bowl is a container that has been utilised throughout history for the preparation and serving of food and drink. Bowls are round dishes, with spherical, hollow interiors. The edges and bottom of a bowl form a seamless curve. The form of a bowl makes it ideal for holding liquids and loose food. The exterior of a bowl is most often round.
History of the Bowl
Society has utilised bowls for millennia; the oldest discovered is 18,000 years old. Throughout history, remnants of silver hollowware have been found in tombs worldwide. In contrast, there is a distinct lack of flatware found in these excavations. This suggests that unsurprisingly finding a container for ones meal was a first priority for ancient civilisations.
Unearthed artefacts prove that silver has been a popular material for crafting bowls for many years. Bowls in this form have been found from societies such as the ancient Greeks, Etruscans, Egyptians, and Romans.
Another widely used technique for crafting bowls was pottery. This was particularly popular in ancient China and Greece. Elaborately decorated Chinese bowls can be found that date to the Neolithic period. In South Asian cultures, the bowl is still the typical form of vessel off which food is eaten, and on which it is served. Historically, small bowls were used for both eating and drinking. The Greeks utilised a wide variety of bowls. These included small items such as phiales and pateras, and bowl-shaped cups called kylices.
As time progressed so did craftsmanship skills; this is evidenced in the materials that bowls were made from. More durable materials such as silver became commonplace, as well as glass and silver-plate.
Different styles of bowl have also evolved throughout time, as a reaction to the needs, tastes, and trends of various cultures and societies.