Ancient Glass Cosmetic & Jewellery Vessels

Cosmetic and jewellery vessels were everyday items for men and women in ancient times. They are also known as cosmetic flasks or jars, kohl tubes, teardrop bottles, unguentaria and balsamaria. Wearing makeup was usual in ancient Egypt: it served multiple purposes, from protecting the skin and eyes from the glare of the sun, to symbolising amulets like the Wedj Eye. Containers were required for the powders which both men and women used to mix their own cosmetics and make up and some of these vessels were also used to store precious unguents or perfumes, like the roman glass examples in our selection. The evidence for jewellery vessels is also widespread as the wearing of jewellery was customary for both sexes across many ancient cultures. In ancient Roman society in particular, wearing jewellery was a public display of wealth and rank for men and women.