PA-2874: (144 x 81 mm – 5 5/8 x 3 3/16 inches). A pleasingly formed large bluish-green, blown-glass Roman flask. It has a slightly tapered, domed body with a slender neck and a flared lip with a rolled rim. Glass of this shape was used to store ointments or cosmetic oils. Beautiful light green glass and very fine silvery surface patina with some interior earthen deposits with areas of intense blue, green, silver and magenta iridescence – excellent condition. Exceptional size and unusual shape – quite scarce!
c. 2nd – 3rd century AD
Provenance: Roman Middle East, from a museum (accession numbers on base);
New York City Private Collection, Sotheby's 1993.
The survival of this fragile glass seems nearly miraculous. Occasionally examples where the glass has reacted to burial exhibit a shimmering iridescence that has long captivated the imagination of the most ardent collectors and artists.