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Glass gold-band mosaic bottle

Period:
Early Imperial, Julio-Claudian
Date:
1st half of 1st century A.D.
Culture:
Roman
Medium:
Glass; cast and blown, and cut
Dimensions:
H. 2 in. (5.1 cm.)
Classification:
Glass
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund, 1906
Accession Number:
06.1035.2
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 166
Translucent cobalt blue, translucent turquoise blue and opaque yellow partially mixed together to appear green, opaque white, and colorless encasing shattered gold leaf.
Everted, horizontal rim with rounded outer lip; cylindrical neck; sloping shoulder; small carinated body, with straight side above and curving side below point of greatest diameter; flat bottom.
Gold-band mosaic pattern formed from a single serpentine length of layered canes formed in the following order: blue outlined in white, blue, colorless with gold leaf, and green outlined in white and blue; the length is wound three times round body, being fused together across bottom.
Intact; slight dulling and pitting, and faint iridescent weathering; encrustation on inside of neck.
Rotary grinding marks on exterior.

Gold-band cast glass was a particularly opulent type of early Roman glassware. It combines canes of brightly colored translucent and opaque glass with strips of gold leaf encased between layers of colorless glass. Only a limited number of vessel shapes were made in this way, and some of the most common are small globular or carinated bottles such as these. Similar shapes are also found amongst the earliest free-blown and mold-blown bottles that made glass cheap and accessible to most Romans. Gold-band glass, however, was undoubtedly a luxury product that only the very rich could afford.
Oliver, Andrew Jr. 1967. "Late Hellenistic Glass in the Metropolitan Museum." Journal of Glass Studies, 9: no. 8, pp. 23-24, fig. 15.

Hoving, Thomas and Carmen Gómez-Moreno. 1973. "Gold." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, 31(2): pp. 107-9.

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