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Light green glass bowl


Height: 7.500 cm
Diameter: 12.400 cm

ME 91534

Room 55: Mesopotamia

    Light green glass bowl

    Possibly Phoenician, 8th century BC
    Found at Nimrud (ancient Kalhu), northern Iraq

    Found in the palace of King Ashurnasirpal II

    This glass bowl was discovered in the nineteenth century by the excavator Henry Layard. Although it comes from the palace of King Ashurnasirpal II (reigned 883-859 BC), it dates to a later period. It was found together with three other bowls and is very similar in colour and technique of manufacture to the 'Sargon Vase'. It may have its origins in Phoenicia on the Mediterranean coast, since it was found in a room which contained a lot of material that we can be sure was imported as booty or tribute, although it is equally possible that this bowl was in fact manufactured in Assyria.

    Glass vessels are known in the ancient Near East from as early as the second millennium BC. They were originally made by building glass up around a core of clay which was afterwards removed. By the time of this bowl, however, glass vessels were cast, probably using the lost wax technique, and then finished by grinding and polishing.

    J.E. Curtis and J.E. Reade (eds), Art and empire: treasures from (London, The British Museum Press, 1995)

    A.H. Layard, Discoveries in the ruins of Ni (London, J. Murray, 1853)


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    On display: Room 55: Mesopotamia

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