Unguentaria were amongst the most common objects of Roman blown glass: produced in large numbers, they were items of every day use for keeping expensive unguents and cosmetic oils. By the 1st century AD, the technique of glass-blowing had revolutionised the art of glass-making, allowing for the production of small medicine, incense, and perfume containers in new forms. The small body and mouth allowed the user carefully to pour and control the amount of liquid dispensed, and glass was the material of choice for storing the oils because it was not porous. These small glass (or ceramic) bottles are found frequently at Hellenistic and Roman sites, especially in cemeteries, and the perfumes which filled them would have been gathered from all corners of the expansive Roman Empire.
Roman Pale Green Unguentaria
Two Roman glass vessels. Each is a tall Roman glass unguentarium of the candlestick type, in translucent glass. Each has a wide rim, the tall neck merging into a bulbous body, and stands on a flattened base with an inverted centre.
B. Height 15 cm, in pale green glass; with some encrustations.
Condition: Fine condition with some surface encrustations.