Roman Glass Dropper Flask


An Ancient Roman glass flask made with translucent clear blue glass and covered with iridescence. T presents an ovoid body, a short neck which opens in a wide flaring mouth, finished with a rolled rim. The base of the flask presents small ribbing signs and the bottom rises slightly at the centre. The flaring mouth is attached to the body on the neck, with only a tiny hole to let through the liquid stored inside.

Date: 3rd Century AD
Provenance: UK art market, acquired prior to 1980.
Condition: Fine condition with earthy encrustations. on the surface

In stock

SKU: ES-19153 Category: Tags: ,

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.

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

Weight 54.7 g
Dimensions H 8.3 cm



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