2. A narrow-necked jar used in ancient Greece and Rome, usually made of clay, with a narrow neck and two handles, used for holding oil or wine
3. Contraction of amphiphoreus, from amphi-, "on both sides" plus phoreus "bearer, carrier" and pherein, "to bear, to carry"; from its two handles.
Its shape made it easy to handle and ideal for tying onto a mule's or donkey's back. They were often placed side-by-side in upright positions in a sand-floored cellar. Sinking it into the sand or ground kept the contents cool.
Amphorae were also made of glass, onyx, gold, stone, and brass and some had conventional jar bottoms with a flat surface. The container would be sealed when full, and the handle usually carried an amphora stamp, impressed before firing, giving details such as the source, the potter's name, the date and the capacity. It is unlikely that amphorae were normally re-used.