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Ancient Glass

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Image of Unguentarium

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Bookmark: http://triarte.brynmawr.edu/objects-1/info/153820





Unguentarium

Imperial (Roman)
ca. 1st century - 2nd century
Glass

4 5/16 x 1 1/16 x 1/16 in. (11 x 2.7 x 0.2 cm)

Bryn Mawr College
Accession Number: G.5
Classification: Containers and Vessels; Vessels; Unguentaria
Culture/Nationality: Eastern Mediterranean (?)

Keywords Click a term to view the records with the same keyword
This object has the following keywords:
  • glass - An amorphous, inorganic substance made by fusing silica (silicon dioxide) with a basic oxide; generally transparent but often translucent or opaque. Its characteristic properties are its hardness and rigidity at ordinary temperatures, its capacity for plastic working at elevated temperatures, and its resistance to weathering and to most chemicals except hydrofluoric acid. Used for both utilitarian and decorative purposes, it can be formed into various shapes, colored or decorated. Glass originated as a glaze in Mesopotamia in about 3500 BCE and the first objects made wholly of glass date to about 2500 BCE.
  • unguentaria - Containers probably used to hold ointments and perfume. Early ceramic examples found at Petra (probably 4th-century BCE) were in the typical Hellenistic form of the spindle bottle, but this form was later completely replaced by a series of high-necked types with round to ovoid bodies of varying and apparently standardized forms (from the 1st century BCE onwards). The number of unguentaria found at Petra suggests that they were made locally; their manufacture would have been linked to the myrrh and other unguents that the Nabataeans traded. They have also been found at western sites. Pear-shaped glass unguentaria were later made at various locations in the Arabian peninsula.

Additional Images Click an image to view a larger version
Additional Image G.5_BMC_c_3.jpg
G.5_BMC_c_3.jpg

Exhibition List
This object was included in the following exhibitions:
  • Shifting Sands: Roman Glass in the Bryn Mawr College Collections Bryn Mawr College , Oct 15, 2007 – May 30, 2008

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If you would like to cite this object in a Wikipedia article please use the following template:

<ref name=BMC>cite web |url=http://triarte.brynmawr.edu/objects-1/info/153820 |title=Unguentarium |author=Bryn Mawr College Library Special Collections |accessdate=10/5/2022 |publisher=Bryn Mawr College</ref>

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