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Cups were a part of everyday life in the ancient world, just as they are today but craftworkers and artists were often challenged to use their talents to produce especially decorative and beautiful examples. In this gallery of 24 images we showcase a wide range of cups from Egypt to Japan, illustrating the extraordinary imagination and technical skill that went into producing a cup in faience, pottery, glass or gold. These masterpieces would have become conversation pieces in themselves and offered a host the chance to wow guests with their wealth and fine taste.