c. 2573–2454 BC
Diameter: 10.8 cm (4 1/4 in.); Diameter of mouth: 9.1 cm (3 9/16 in.); Overall: 6.4 cm (2 1/2 in.)
Bequest of Leonard C. Hanna, Jr. and various donors by exchange 1985.108
Both ancient Egyptian men and women loved cosmetics. Unguents, oils, and perfumes made from aromatic plant resins and gums were obtained at great cost from distant lands. The objects identified with cosmetics were given lavish treatment. The luxurious obsidian and gold beaker hints at the precious contents it once held. Others are fanciful in form, such as an ostrich egg. The god Bes, patron god of cosmetics, himself is the subject of a colorful jar. The delicately carved human face and the head of a giraffe decorated elaborate ivory cosmetic spoons.
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