During the Roman Empire glass was often the preferred material for storing expensive oils, perfumes, and medicines because it was not porous. The small body and mouth allowed the user carefully to pour and control the amount of liquid dispensed. Core-form is amongst the earliest methods of making glass. The molten glass was wrapped around an organic core; thin trails of glass were laid around the body and combed in two directions to form the feathering, the vessel was then marvered to create the smooth surface, retaining an opaque aspect. These small glass bottles are found frequently at Hellenistic and Roman sites, especially in cemeteries, and the liquids which filled them would have been gathered from all corners of the expansive Roman Empire.
A brief history of the object is recorded as such: The Adda family, the previous owners of the item, originally from Alexandria, were avid antiquities collectors and formed the majority of their collection in the 1920s-1930s. Abraham Adda (b. circa 1855) had three sons: Victor (b. circa 1885-1965) a collector of coins, Iznik and ancient Egyptian objects; Fernand, a collector of Iznik ceramics, and Joseph. The collection has been situated in Europe since before the Second World War. Collection of Mrs Petra Schamelman, Breitenbach, Germany. Private collection of a Kensington collector. Property of a London gentleman.