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Indian Madhya Pradesh Glass Double Inkwell w/ Stoppers

Central Asia, central India, Madhya Pradesh, Mandla District, ca. 3rd century BCE to 1st century CE. An intriguing inkwell formed from opaque black-hued glass with emerald-green flecks in an oblong, seven-faced form. The top of the inkwell exhibits a pair of shallow receptacles, one for black ink and the other for red, each with a thick, square rim and an accompanying stopper. The stopper for the black inkwell has a teardrop-form body, and the red ink stopper has a roughly-spherical handle and a conical plug. The two colors of ink contained within the vessel indicates this was perhaps used for important or official business or possibly for hand-drawing illustrations with a more diverse chromatic spectrum. Typical inkwells from this region are known to only have one receptacle, so inkwells containing dual receptacles are quite rare. Size (w/o stoppers): 2.375" L x 1.5" W x 2.125" H (6 cm x 3.8 cm x 5.4 cm); 3" H (7.6 cm) with stoppers in receptacles.

Condition: Small losses to multiple sides of body and stoppers, and some minor abrasions. Nice earthen deposits throughout, and traces of red ink pigment within red ink receptacle.

Provenance: private House of Indus collection; purportedly found in the Mandla District of Madhya Pradesh

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