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Lot 106, Auction 5/30/2017: Gorgeous Roman Green Glass Unguent - Fiery Iridescence

Rome, ca. 1st to 3rd century CE. A miniature unguent (perfume vessel), most impressive for its brilliant iridescence, "fiery" to be more precise, a term conjuring that spirited, dramatic swirling movement of rainbow hues (even purple) which simultaneously shimmer. Adding to its appeal is the sweet, petite form, starting from a base of some girth that narrows to a column only to flare at the rolled rim. Just exquisite! Size: 1.25" in diameter x 2.375" H (3.2 cm x 6 cm)

Most scholars agree, Roman glass was of the highest quality -both aesthetically and technically - among the ancients. While glass making had been practiced for centuries, the Romans invented glass blowing in the 1st century BCE which revolutionized the artform. We can appreciate such a wide variety of forms and shapes, because the medium of glass has unique physical properties that make for so many more possibilities than metal or clay. Roman glassmakers reached incredible artistic heights with both free-blown vessels and mold blown forms and decorations.

Condition: Chip under rim. Amazing iridescence.

Provenance: Ex-Hagar Collection, St. Louis, MO

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