About this artwork
Glass vessels were one of the many kinds of objects that were made for pilgrims of different faiths who visited Jerusalem. This jug was clearly made for a Christian. Three sides of it feature representations of a monumental, gem-encrusted cross that was erected on the rock of Golgotha, the site of Christ’s crucifixion, in the fourth century. Sixth-century pilgrims described steps leading up to the site from the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, and it seems likely that this jug was intended to hold oils procured at the site that were taken as souvenirs.
Glass workshops outside the walls of Jerusalem mass-produced a series of hexagonal and octagonal jugs with Christian or Jewish symbols on their sides. The vessels with Christian symbols, like this example, have images of the cross alternating with diamond shapes. Such vessels were probably filled with oil from holy sites and sold to pilgrims.
Currently Off View
- Ancient and Byzantine Art
- Pilgrimage Jug with Christian Symbols
- Jerusalem, Latin Kingdom of
- 578 AD–636 AD
- Glass, mold-blown technique
- 15 × 9.1 × 7 cm (5 7/8 × 3 9/16 × 2 3/4 in.)
- Gift of Theodore W. and Frances S. Robinson