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See Toiletries and Grooming for smaller bottles used for perfumes and oils.
Roman, Syro-Palestinian (Samaria?), Snake-Thread Flask, Late 2nd - Early 4th Century A.D.
Snake-thread ornamentation originated in the eastern provinces of the Roman Empire in the second half of the second century and its popularity peaked in the first half of the third century. Snake-thread decoration was revived in the second half of the fourth century in the east and in the west near Cologne in modern Germany. Serpentine form trails may vary in thickness, may be the same color as the vessel (usually colorless) or brightly colored (common in the West). Ontario Museum 309, with similar subtle snake-thread ornamentation, is attributed to Samaria, 3rd to early 4th century A.D.
A disadvantage of antiquity photographs is that they usually fail to adequately indicate size. This vessel, nearly 5" tall, is larger than most similar vessels of the period. AG63814. cf. Ontario Museum 309 (for similar ornamentation), Superb, complete and intact, a well made beautiful flask, some weathering, some iridescence, snake thread flask, 12.4 mm (4 7/8") high, funnel mouth with rolled rim, cylindrical neck, bulbous body, snake-thread ornamentation on the body, flat bottom; from a Florida dealer; $900.00 (€792.00)
Roman, Eastern Mediterranean, Small Glass Bowl, c. Mid 1st - 3rd Century A.D.
In his Satyricon, the satirist Petronius’ tells the story of a Roman glass-maker who invented flexible glass and was granted an audience with the Roman emperor Tiberius. After Tiberius examined a glass cup, he handed it back to the glass-maker, who threw it to the floor. The emperor was shocked, but the cup did not shatter and was only dented. The glass-maker beat the glass with a little hammer, and in no time, the cup regained its original shape. Tiberius asked if anybody else knew how to make this flexible glass, to which the glass-maker replied, no. The glass maker was expecting a reward for his invention, but instead, Tiberius had him executed, thus taking the secret of making flexible glass with him to his grave. Tiberius executed the glass-maker because he was afraid flexible glass would cause gold to be devalued. Believe it or not, Pliny tells this same story in his, Natural History!AG20812. cf. Harter A17, Isings 18, Newark Museum 101, Bomford 98, Choice, intact, areas of weathering and iridescence, very tiny chips in the edge, small glass bowl, mold pressed thin pale green transparent glass; 13.8 cm (4 3/8") diameter, 3.9 cm (1 1/2") high; spherical shell, curving outward toward edge, rolled up and in lip with ground edge, bottom slightly concave, ornamented with light wheel-incised horizontal bands on exterior; from the collection of Alex G. Malloy, former dealer in antiquities for 40 years; $900.00 (€792.00)
Roman, Syro-Palestinian, Glass Jar with a Flaring Mouth and Double Rim, Late 3rd - 5th Century A.D.
This is a rather plain, but finely made jar - except for the unusual "double rim." The double rim was made by folding to create a flange immediately below the rim.AG20811. cf. Corning I 284, Isings 133, Superb, complete and intact, attractive iridescence, spots of tan weathering, glass jar with flaring mouth and double rim, well made, thin transparent blue-green glass, 6.7 cm 2 (2 5/8") high, 7.2 mm (2 3/4') maximum diameter, short concave neck, flaring mouth, horizontal flange around the underside of the rim immediately below the rolled and folded in lip, kicked bottom with pontil mark; from the collection of Alex G. Malloy, former dealer in antiquities for 40 years; $650.00 (€572.00)
Roman, Eastern Mediterranean, Glass Funnel Mouth Flask, c. 4th - 5th Century A.D.
This type, with a funnel mouth, usually with an unworked or simple fire rounded rim, and without a base is found from Gaul to the Eastern Mediterranean, most often in the remains of 4th to 5th century houses. Some specimens have a rolled or folded rim. Specimens with a constriction at the base of the neck or a dropper diaphragm within the neck are less common but described by Isings. Some examples are decorated with pinches, ribs, wheel cuts, and coils, as found on other contemporary glass vessels. Some late specimens have bell shaped or square bodies.AG21127. cf. Isings 104b, Corning II 623, Lightfoot NMS 337, Corning I 280, Superb, complete, short crack from mouth rim, areas of weathering and iridescence, glass funnel mouth flask, very pale green semi-transparent glass, 12.7 cm (5") high, 9.0 cm (3 1/2") maximum diameter, fire rounded rim, long funnel mouth, short concave neck, bulbous body with mold blown swirled ribs, convex bottom with no pontil mark; from the collection of Alex G. Malloy, former dealer in antiquities for 40 years; $600.00 (€528.00)
Roman, Syro-Palestinian, Glass Lattice-Patterned Dropper Flask, 3rd Century A.D.
Dropper bottles, such as this one, were filled with scented oil or perfume. The constriction in the neck made it easy to dispense the expensive contents one drop at a time.AG21026. cf. Carnegie Museum 206, Newark Museum 81, Superb, complete and intact, weathering, iridescence, light earthen deposits, lattice-patterned dropper flask, pale blue glass; 7.1 cm (2 3/4") tall, 4.7 cm (1 7/8") maximum diameter; mold-blown lattice pattern on globular body, smooth tubular neck with constriction and dropper diaphragm at base, broad flattened funnel with folded rim, kicked base, with pontil mark; from the collection of Alex G. Malloy, former dealer in antiquities for 40 years; $450.00 (€396.00)
Roman, Syro-Palestinian, Glass Sprinkler Jug, c. 3rd Century A.D.
This opaque buff-yellow-brown enamel-like weathering is common on glass vessels found in Israel, Lebanon, Jordan and Syria.AG63811. cf. Lightfoot NMS 178, Ontario Museum 416, Isings -, Complete, tiny chip in handle (visible in photo), possibly a small rim repair or just flaked weathering, thick yellowish brown enamel-like weathering, glass sprinkler jug, 10.5 mm (4 1/8"), free-blow, yellow-green glass, conical piriform body, tubular neck, slight funnel mouth, washer-like sprinkler diaphragm constriction at the base of neck, handle attached below rim and below neck, kicked bottom with pontil mark; from a Florida dealer; $360.00 (€316.80)
Roman, Syro-Palestinian, Glass Fusiform Unguentarium with Iridescence, c. 3rd - 5th Century A.D.
Hayes' Ontario Museum catalog references many similar specimens, noting some are from Beirut. Our example is finer than most examples of similar form, many of which appear to be carelessly made. Hayes' dates the type 5th century or later. Perhaps the finer form indicates ours is earlier. AG63806. cf. Ontario Museum 461, Choice. complete and intact, much iridescence, fusiform unguentarium, 16.5 cm, spindle-shaped long tubular body, upper half is a neck narrowing slightly to folded and flattened rim, small shoulder at center, lower half is a narrow tubular body narrowing to a rounded point, stand not included; from a Florida dealer; $330.00 (€290.40)
Roman, Eastern Mediterranean, Twisted Glass Rod, 1st - 2nd Century A.D.
Isings notes that glass rods are found "everywhere where the Romans were." Most are twisted but some are plain. Most often they have simple flattened ends but pointed ends, and ends with loops or discs, such as on this specimen are published. The purpose of these rods remains a mystery, but they are sometimes called stirring rods or dipping rods, suggesting a couple possibilities.AG21191. cf. ROM Glass 656b, Lightfoot NMS 458, Kofler-Truniger 201, Bomford 83, Oppenländer 619, Newark Museum 521, Isings 79, Complete, reconstructed from at least three fragments, twisted glass rod, light blue-green semi-transparent glass, bent over to form a loop at one end, the other end pressed flat to form a disk; from the collection of Alex G. Malloy, former dealer in antiquities for 40 years; $300.00 (€264.00)
Roman Syro-Palestinian, Glass Sprinkler Jug, c. 3rd - 4th Century A.D.
Sprinkler jugs like this may have been used to store and dispense scented oil which was rubbed on the skin and then scraped off to clean the body before bathing. We believe this type of sprinkler jug may have also been used for funerals in the Levante. Filled with perfumed oil, a diaphragm in the neck made it easy to sprinkle the perfume one drop at time during services. After the funeral, these sprinkler jugs may have been left in the tomb to slowly effuse their remaining contents.AG21170. cf. Lightfoot NMS 178, Ontario Museum 416, Isings -, Choice, complete and intact, tan-brown enamel-like weathering, glass sprinkler jug, free-blown, 8.4 cm (3 1/4") high, 6.8 cm (6 3/4") maximum diameter, translucent green glass, slightly conical mouth, rolled and folded in rim, short cylindrical neck, single handle attached under the rim and to body immediately below the neck, washer-like sprinkler diaphragm at base of neck, squat conical body, flat bottom with pontil mark; from a New Jersey dealer; $250.00 (€220.00)
Islamic, Mold Blown Glass Jar, c. 9th - 10th Century A.D.
Dating on this type is somewhat uncertain, we only found the one similar jar in the many references examined (Newark Museum 227). That specimen is smaller, with a ornamental diamond pattern and thick blue-green glass. It may not be closely related and, for that piece, Susan Auth omitted the date from the description.AG21144. cf. Newark Museum 227, Average, reconstructed, missing fragment (visible in photo), weathering, old glued on museum or collectors tag, irregularly shaped cylindrical jar, transparent green glass, 11 cm (4 3/8") tall, 8.5 cm (3 3/8") maximum diameter, mold-blown annulet dimple pattern on sides of cylindrical body, sloped shoudler with extended flair at the bottom, convex neck, flaring mouth, fire rounded rim, kicked bottom with pontil mark, from the collection of Alex G. Malloy, former dealer in antiquities for 40 years; $225.00 (€198.00)