The Glass Scent Bottle
Lalique-scent-bottle This lecture examines perhaps the evolution of the prettiest of all glass vessels, the scent bottle. These have been formed almost since the birth of glassmaking itself, either in Egypt or Mesopotamia, around 4,000BC. Before the introduction of glass-blowing, around the time of the birth of Christ, scented oil bottles were formed by coiling molten glass, like plastisene, around a core of camel dung moulded into the appropriate shape. Even using these primitive methods, Middle Eastern and Greek glassmakers achieved astonishingly beautiful results.

1845-65-Scent-Bottle This trend has continued ever since, albeit using superior technology, with the finest examples set with precious gems and lavished with gilded, engraved and cut decoration. The story traces the stylistic and technological advances that have marked glassmaking and the scent bottle since the days of Rome, through the 18th century and Victorian eccentricity, to the present day.