Alabaster alabastron (perfume vase)


On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 170

Cut from one piece of stone, the vase consists of the container, in the form of a woman holding a lotos flower, and a base embellished with four female heads. The work is an Etruscan response to perfume flasks with the busts of women that originated in the Near East and spawned adaptations in Cyprus, East Greece, and Etruria. The concept of decorating four sides of a vessel ultimately derives from the East as well. Related works are exhibited in the Belfer Court on the main floor.

Alabaster alabastron (perfume vase), Alabaster, Etruscan

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