PA-3020: Large Ancient Roman Glass Flask, c. 1st - 2nd Century AD (161 x 74 mm – 6 3/8 x 2 7/8 inches). A pleasingly formed large bluish-green, blown-glass Roman flask. It has a tapered 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!
See Corning Museum of Glass Monograph 6, #117 for a flask of similar form from a burial at Sardis, dated late 1st to early 2nd Century AD.
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.