© Erimtan Archaeology and Arts Museum

Name of Object:

Perfume Bottle


Ankara, Turkey

Holding Museum:

Erimtan Archaeology and Arts Museum


AD First or second century

Type of object:

Glass Artefacts

Museum Inventory Number:


Material(s) / Technique(s):

Glass; mould-blown


Height: 7.2cm; Diameter bottom: 2.3cm

Period / Dynasty:

Roman Period




This is a fine and early example of a series of janiform head-flasks in glass. It was made in a two part mould and each of the two heads (related to the Roman god, Janus) is the same. Such mould-blown janiform bottles seem to originate in the first century AD and widely seen around the Eastern Mediterranean region. Janus masks continued being made into the third and fourth centuries. The janiform bottle has been used as a scent bottle which most probably belonged to the wealthy Roman households. It was used to store aromatic and herbal oils, as well as perfumes.
The double-faced glass bottle is made from clear glass which is light-blue in colour and it has a long cylindrical neck which protrudes from the centre of the head. The head has wavy hair and clear facial features which provide a naturalistic appearance. The bottom of the neck has been flattened so as to make a base for the bottle.

How date and origin were established:

By stylistic analysis and material dating

How Object was obtained:

By purchase

Selected bibliography:

Baykan, C. and Baykan, D., Eskiçağ’da Cam, İstanbul: Türk Eskiçağ Bilimleri Enstitüsü Yayınları, 2013.
Fleming, S. J., Roman Glass: Reflections on Cultural Change, Pennsylvania: University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, 1999.
Lightfoot, C. S. and Arslan, M. (eds), Ancient Glass of Asia Minor: The Yüksel Erimtan Collection, Ankara: Ünal Ofset, 1992.
Newby, M. S., Glass of Four Millennia, Oxford: Ashmolean Museum, 2000.
Özgümüş, Ü. C., Çağlar Boyu Cam Tasarımı, İstanbul: Arkeoloji ve Sanat Yayınları, 2013.

Citation of this web page:

Ezgi Özdemir, Selma Ünal "Perfume Bottle" in MWNF GALLERIES , Museum With No Frontiers, 2020. http://www.museumwnf.org/thematicgallery/thg_galleries/database_item.php?itemId=objects;DGA;tr;Mus41;11;en&id=glass

Prepared by: Ezgi Özdemir, Selma Ünal

MWNF Working Number: TUR1_011