Roman Glass Candlestick Unguentarium

£ 295.00

A fine Roman candlestick unguentarium blown from translucent pale blue glass. The vessel displays an inverted triangular body, widening towards the slightly concave base and a long, narrow neck leading to a flat splayed rim. Beautiful iridescence, including a deep blue, is visible from the inside and the surface of the body along with earthly encrustation.

Date: Circa 1st – 2nd Century AD
Condition: Very fine condition, some strain marks around the neck.


SKU: LD-282 Category: Tag:

Unguentaria were amongst the most common objects of Roman blown glass: produced in large numbers, they were items of everyday use for keeping expensive unguents and cosmetic oils. By the 1st century AD, the technique of glass-blowing had revolutionised the art of glass-making. The new technique allowed craftsmen to use smaller amounts of glass for each vessel and obtain much thinner walls, so enabling the creation of small medicine, incense, and perfume containers in new forms. The small body and mouth allowed the user carefully to pour and control the amount of liquid dispensed, and glass was the material of choice for storing the oils because it was not porous. These small glass (or ceramic) bottles are found frequently at Hellenistic and Roman sites, especially in cemeteries, and the perfumes which filled them would have been gathered from all corners of the expansive Roman Empire.

To find out more about Ancient Roman glass please visit our relevant blog post: Ancient Roman Glass.

Weight 88.6 g
Dimensions W 7.1 x H 18.2 cm



Reference: For a similar item,The British Museum, item 1884,1227.3

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