Roman Rod formed miniature glass vessels, 3rd.-4th. century AD
Size: ca. 23-29 mm. tall each.
Condition: 6 intact, 3 with minor repairs to the handles.
These small vessels comes in a variety of forms and colors, and first appear in the archaeological record around the mid-3rd Century AD. Production seems to have begun in the broader Syria / Palestine area, though examples have been found over a very wide area, including western Europe.
These remarkable objects were created by bead makers, not glass blowers. Their structure is basically that of a short tubular bead, closed at one end, tooled to create a neck or mouth, and enhanced with a tiny loop handle and either trailed and marvered decoration in a contrasting color or a contrasting latticework applied to the body.
COMPARISONS: See Maud Spaer, "Ancient Glass in the Israel Museum, Beads and Other Small Objects" catalog #s 343-354 for several similar examples, and pages 170-173 for a detailed description of this class of objects.