Roman Glass Cylindrical Bottle


An Ancient Roman cylindrical bottle, finely blow in translucent yellow-green glass. The vessel features a flat base, which is slightly everted in the centre, and a short neck leading to a wide, everted rim. An extremely well preserved example of Roman glassware, displaying its original translucency with some areas of iridescence.

Date: Circa 1st-3rd Century AD
Provenance: From a private Japanese collection, 1972-2010.
Condition: Good condition, with some earthly deposits and iridescence to the surface.


SKU: CS-36 Category: Tag:

Glass was often the preferred material for storing expensive oils, perfumes, and medicines because it was not porous. The small body and mouth allowed the user carefully to pour and control the amount of liquid dispensed. By the 1st century AD, the technique of glass blowing had revolutionised the art of glass making, allowing for the production of small medicine, incense, and perfume containers in new forms. These small glass bottles are found frequently at Hellenistic and Roman sites, especially in cemeteries, and the liquids, which filled them would have been gathered from all corners of the expansive Roman Empire. The iridescence on ancient Roman glass was unintentional, and was caused by weathering on its surface. The extent to which a glass object weathers depends mainly on the burial conditions; however, the humidity, heat, and type of soil in which the glass was buried also all affect its preservation. In this case, the glass has preserved its original translucency.

To find out more about Roman glass please see our relevant blog post: Collecting Roman Glass.

Weight 38.0 g
Dimensions H 7.3 cm



Reference: For a similar item, The Metropolitan Museum, item 81.10.101

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