Ancient Roman Amber Glass Bowl

£ 1,500.00

A delicate ancient Roman bowl blown from amber glass. The sides of this shallow vessel are formed from one continuous gradual curve that continues across the base. The simple design is enhanced with two concentric wheel cut lines below the lip of the bowl, but the colour of the glass is the main focal point. The thin sides display the translucency of the glass to great effect, which emphasises the swirls of subtly varying shades of yellow-amber and clear glass that flow across the surface. Patches of rainbow iridescence can be seen on the base.

Date: Circa 1st Century BC - 1st Century AD
Provenance: UK auction late 1990s. Bonhams refernce number: 445037/24. Ex JL Collection
Condition: Fine condition, with some chips and earthly encrustation to surface.
Product Code: RGS-64
Category: Tags: ,

The invention of glass casting and glass blowing revolutionized completely the production of glass in the ancient world, and thus became one of the principal and major industries in the Roman Empire. Roman glass became extremely popular and was used in many and different aspects of everyday life: some were used as drinking or tableware vessels, while others became perfume bottles. Miniature vessels would be used as charms, or even worn as pendants. Roman glass can be admired in a wide range of shapes and colours. Each different colour was created adding specific metal to the silica and soda compost. The amber colour on this beautiful piece has been created by adding iron-sulphur, and was typical of bowls found in Italy and the western provinces of the Roman Empire.

To learn more about Roman glass, visit our relevant post: How It Was Made: Roman Glass.

Dimensions W 15.0 x H 4.0 cm

Blown Glass


Southern Europe

Reference: For a similar item,The Metropolitan Museum, item 74.51.296

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