Jun 19, 2007

Cosmetic Vessel

Cosmetic Vessel

c. 1980–1901 BCE


Diameter: 7 cm (2 3/4 in.); Overall: 6.8 cm (2 11/16 in.)

Edwin R. and Harriet Pelton Perkins Memorial Fund 1982.3


Cosmetic vessels would have once contained scented oils or ointments used for beautifying the body, while kohl containers held the eye paint seen in many depictions of ancient Egyptians. Galena, a mineral used in eye paint, helped reflect the sun and repelled insects and tiny organisms that could cause eye disease and blindness. Cosmetics were an essential element of daily life and associated with upholding the ancient Egyptians’ high standards of cleanliness.

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