Ancient Glass Blog of The Allaire Collection


Posted in Uncategorized by Allaire Collection of Glass on February 14, 2021

Roman Glass Aryballos with Bronze Suspension Chain


The Windmill Collection of Roman Glass


Date:  2nd Century A.D.  Roman Empire, probably Eastern Mediterranean (Syria)  Size: ↑ 15.5 cm (aryballos) │ Ø 12.0 cm, ↑ 34.5 cm (with chain)

Classification: Isings (1957) form 61

Provenance: 1985 Private U.K.  collection

Description The free-blown blue-green aryballos or stock bottle has a spherical body and cylindrical neck. The top of the long (↑ 5.3 cm) neck has been pulled out, then up and inwards, after which the rim is flattened at the top. The bottom (without pontil mark) rises slightly. Two dolphin-like handles (in the same color) are applied to the body, pulled up from the shoulder and pressed against the neck (one with a small double loop). The double bronze chain is attached to the handles with a ring on each side and also has a (hanging) ring at the end. The rings of the chains vary slightly in size from bottom to top.

Remarks Most probably aryballoi or amphorae of this size were used in Roman household as a storage bottle, hung on the wall or shelf. Possibly also full of oil for the athletes or other visitors to the Thermae who could refill their small bottles before each bath.

Condition Completely intact

References Christie’s New York December 9, 2005 no. 145 (yellow, with same bronze suspension chain); Christie’s  June 8, 2005 no 128 (different chain); Bonhams London May 14, 2003, no. 329 (green, with bronze suspension chain; The Yunwai  Collection of Ancient Glass and Antiquities 2015, nr.157


Published Archeology Magazine Vind 23, September 2016 (cover and page 31)

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