Ancient Glass Blog of The Allaire Collection


Posted in Uncategorized by Allaire Collection of Glass on May 23, 2020

Two handled roman footed jug

of the Henk-Martin Goldschmidt collection

Origin: Roman Empire. Date: 4th century AD

Description: Two handled jug with roman foot, 11 ribs and pushed-in bottom with pontil mark (Isings form is hard to define precise). Several cracks, professionally restored, iridescent, light green transparent glass, free blown, two opposing handleds applied, in both handleds two thumb-rests, tooled. A narrowed collar around flared neck, a sphere-shaped dip molded corpus, brownish deposit. Neck and mouth are free formed; the ends of the two attached round coil handleds were pressed together with the flat-nose pliers to form semicircular discs.

Dimensions: Height 13 cm, diameter mouth 5,5 cm, diameter foot 4,5 cm, diameter corpus 8,0 cm, weight 81 gram, capacity 294 ml (i.e. approx. ½ sentarius)

Origin: Roman Empire. It would have been found nearby Bonn, possibly Rhein-Stieg-Kreis, region i.e. the Rhine valley in de surroundings of Bonn, Germany.  Based upon the limited number of parallels and the resemblance of the handleds this could be the place of production as well.  However based on color and presentation production in the eastern Mediterranean is also a possibility.

Additional information: Convenient handleds with two thumb-rests each enable the use of three fingers in one movement resulting in a perfect control over the object. The two handleds extending from the shoulder of the flask to the middle of the neck are noteworthy additions to this vessel and may indicate the involvement of a workshop in the western part of the Roman Empire. However based upon the overall form origin in the eastern part of the Roman Empire and subsequent transport are also possible.

Parallels: The particular shape of the handleds is an easy search criterion but, as it worked out, hard to find. In October 2016 a similar flask was auctioned at Christie’s from the John F Fort collection and the MET holds a similar bottle in its collection. Both about the same size and presentation. In the Rheinischen Landesmuseum in Bonn a grape jug has identical handleds but the upper part is attached to the collar instead of the neck. Another bottle from the same museum, but shown in an earlier catalogue, shows parts of identical handleds. In het Römisch-Germanisches Museum in Köln shows a very similar jug on display but with only one handled. In Detroit (Detroit Institute of Arts) a similar two-handled bottle from the 4th century is kept.

Provenance: A private German collection for a long time, acquired November 2019 from Leon Vrancken, Eijsden, The Netherlands.


–  A Roman blue-green two handled flask from the collection of John F Fort, Christie’s auction, lot 153, October 2016

–  The MET, New York, Glass two-handled Roman bottle from late imperial period, dated 4th–5th century A.D., Number: X.21.170

–  Die Römischer Gläser im Rheinischen Landesmuseum Bonn, Anna-Barbara Follmann-Schulz, Landschaftsverband Rheinland, 1992, pages 39 – 40

–  Die Römischer Gläser aus Bonn, Anna-Barbara Follmann-Schulz, Rheinland Verlag, Köln, 1988, page 71 and number 239, table 28

–  Detroit Institute of Arts, Roman two-handled bottle, number 62.171 (Detroit, Michigan, USA)

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