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Beauitful Roman Glass Sprinkler Flask

Roman, Imperial Period, ca. 1st to 3rd century CE. A beautiful mold-blown sprinkler flask, with the inner diaphragm at the junction of the neck and body designed to "sprinkle" precious liquids like perfumes or unguents and prevent their evaporation, likely made to be used as part of an ancient Roman's daily beauty routine. The vessel was blown with numerous ribs radiating upward from the concave base to create an attractive pattern; the cylindrical neck and dramatically flared spout are smooth without ribs. Scholars sometimes call this rare type a "squash glass" because of the ribbing. The glass itself is of a golden caramel hue, and marvelous rainbow iridescence has developed. Size: 3.25" W x 4.875" H (8.3 cm x 12.4 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: Minor nicks to rim, body, and base, with a textured surface resulting from wonderful layers of iridescence. Nice earthen deposits and fabulous rainbow iridescence throughout.

Provenance: private East Coast, USA collection

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