Alabastron (Container for Scented Oil)

A work made of glass, mosaic glass technique.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of glass, mosaic glass technique.

Date:

Early 2nd/1st century BC

Artist:

Late Hellenistic or early Roman; eastern Mediterranean

About this artwork

Containers like this one were used to store precious oils. The flaring rim functioned as an applicator to spread the thick, scented oil over the skin; while the vessel itself was designed to fit comfortably in the user’s hand. In this particularly lavish example, gold leaf was sandwiched between layers of colorless glass and worked into wavy bands with other colored canes.

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Ancient and Byzantine Art

Artist

Ancient Eastern Mediterranean

Title

Alabastron (Container for Scented Oil)

Origin

Eastern Mediterranean Region

Date

200 BC–1 AD

Medium

Glass, mosaic glass technique

Dimensions

12 × 2.2 × 2.2 cm (3 1/2 × 7/8 × 7/8 in.)

Credit Line

Gift of Theodore W. and Frances S. Robinson

Reference Number

1941.1099

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email .

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