Opaque glass; H. 7 in. (17.7 cm)
Gift of J. Pierpont Morgan, 1917 (17.194.170)
This elegant jug, the shape of which imitates that of a metal vessel, shows how quickly the newly founded Roman glass industry mastered its medium. The jug is so expertly crafted that modern scholars have disagreed about its method of manufacture. Some maintain that its body was cast and carved, while others regard it as an exquisite piece of early free-blown production. The handle was cold-carved and the base was cut on a latheboth highly unusual techniques for blown glass that are paralleled only in some examples of early Roman cameo glass. It is therefore likely that the jug was made in a workshop closely associated with those that produced luxury cameos and that it represents a transitional phase in glassmaking when both casting and blowing techniques were used.