Kohl Tube

  • West Asia (probably Northwest Iran)
  • 5th - 4th centuries B.C.
Catalogue Entry

Vessel made from pillar-shaped rod-formed glass. The main body of the vessel has been weathered overall to a light brown surface color, and the original color of the glass is undetermined. A small neck extends from the sharply jutting shoulders. The base is almost flat. Threads of turquoise glass spiral in a zigzag pattern from the shoulders to the base. The four corners of the body have been fitted with projecting orange glass threads which extend from shoulders to base, and protrusions the same color as the body have been attached to the shoulders. Orange glass has also been attached to the mouth area. The four corner attachments give the overall body a clearly formed, squared pillar shape. This was used as a bottle for a substance known as kohl. This cosmetic paste was used to dye the area around the wearer's eyes black. Vessels of this shape were produced in Iran during the Achaemenid dynasty.