Molar Flask (Unguentarium)

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Molar flask (unguentarium) 9th–10th centuries, Egypt Blown and cut glass Kelsey Museum of Archaeology, 1970.3.1011

Molar flask (unguentarium)

This clear glass vial was formed and decorated by a wheel-cutting technique that was popular during late antiquity and later revived during the medieval period in Islamic lands. The small vessel was likely used to house cosmetics such as kohl or unguents such as perfumes and essential oils. The shape of the minute vessel, with its four feet and chiseled sides, has earned it the appellation "molar flask."

Bibliography: Carboni 2001, 98–100, cat. no. 27a–c and 124–127, cat. no. 2.28a–q; Georges 1911; and Jenkins 1986, 25, fig. 23.

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