Vessels of this kind were used to store kohl, before it was applied to the body with a glass rod or reed. Kohl comes from a lead sulphide called “galena”, which was considered to have disinfecting and fly-deterrent properties, and worn since the Protodynastic Period of Egypt by Egyptian queens and noble women. Indeed, it is still present in many eyeliner formulas today. It was originally used as protection against a myriad of eye ailments, and was also believed to protect a person from the harsh glare of the sun when applied around the eyes. To make kohl, the galena was first ground up on a palette, with water or animal fat then added to create a paste. This paste would have adhered to the skin, with soot also added to produce a darker coloured kohl.
Rare Holy Land Multi-Chambered Kohl Pot
A rare, multi-chambered kohl pot in grey stone. Each chamber features an out-turned rim, which is flattened on the top, as well as a slightly recessed neck and round-bottomed chamber.
Condition: Very fine condition, one small hole worn through the wall between two chambers. Some areas of encrustation, more so around the base and inside chambers.