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  1. #1

    Small pontiled amber utility jar- real deal or repro?

    Hi everyone, been a while! I was in a local antique shop today and came across this for cheap. There are very, very few antique bottles that turn up in the DMV area so finding anything is a good day in my books. This piece measures 4 5/8" tall, light amber glass, open pontil base, bimal (not freeblown or dip mold), outward rolled lip, shape is widest at the shoulders and tapers towards the base. Plenty of bubbles and a few potstones. I honestly am uncertain if this has any real age to it or if it's a more modern piece- there is no basewear and the glass has a nice sheen, but it almost seems too perfect? It came with a "matching" glass lid which is the same color and quite bubbly, but I doubt originally came with it if it is in fact an antique. Sort of leaning towards this being an authentic 1830's-50's utility jar but I was hoping for some input!

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    Last edited by Skoda; 08-05-2019 at 01:02 PM.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Bottle Master Harry Pristis's Avatar
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    What a lovely little jar. My guess is that it is French, and fairly early, as these jars go. Most of the jars I have have a disc pontil scar, rather than a glass-tipped scar. This little jar has much more "character" than the later jars I have. The taper you describe suggests a dip mold, doesn't it? All but one (shown below, I think) were blown in a turn mold. The odd one is blown in a bi-mold. Yours is likely to be earlier than the 1880s-90s.

    You're right to be skeptical about the glass stopper -- a cork might be more appropriate. Most of these jars in a larger size had an additional metal cap whose lower edge rested on the square shoulder. The examples I have are mostly in shades of green, blue, and amber.

    Good find.

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  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Harry Pristis View Post
    What a lovely little jar. My guess is that it is French, and fairly early, as these jars go. Most of the jars I have have a disc pontil scar, rather than a glass-tipped scar. This little jar has much more "character" than the later jars I have. The taper you describe suggests a dip mold, doesn't it? All but one (shown below, I think) were blown in a turn mold. The odd one is blown in a bi-mold. Yours is likely to be earlier than the 1880s-90s.

    You're right to be skeptical about the glass stopper -- a cork might be more appropriate. Most of these jars in a larger size had an additional metal cap whose lower edge rested on the square shoulder. The examples I have are mostly in shades of green, blue, and amber.

    Good find.
    Very cool, thank you for the information! My jar looks very similar to those examples; pretty safe to say it's a match. The jar I have is most certainly bimal as there are rather faint mold seams. The shape really does give off the impression that is dip molded and it is rather unusual.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Bottle Master sandchip's Avatar
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    My only cause of concern on a utility type jar like yours would be the complete absence of any base wear.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Bottle Master
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    I'm with Sandchip. I've seen these exact crude stoppered jars several times and they are quite a bit different than the ones Harry has posted (which are old). I'm not convinced the jar that was posted is old.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Bottle Master Harry Pristis's Avatar
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    Sandchip makes a good point. I looked for base wear on the jars in the images I posted with mixed results. Some had modest base wear, some had none. For example, of the two amber jars I posted, the smaller jar had light base wear while the larger has none at all.

    There is a famed artisanal commune on the French Riviera called BIOT which produces hand-blown glass jars (among other things). The BIOT jars may have stoppers, but I have not seen an all-glass stopper. But, I haven't see ALL the jars. The BIOT glass is known for myriad air bubbles, but again, I haven't see ALL their glass objects.

    Perhaps we can get Skoda to tell us where the "DMV area" is and to post an image of the stopper by itself. Here's an example of BIOT glass:


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