Likely made and used in Britain, this large amethyst apothecary bottle was handblown by a glassmaker, an amazing feat given its size and remarkable evenness. Glass is made from sand that is melted in fires over 3,000 degrees Fahrenheit. In this state, it looks like a gel-like liquid, which can be blown and shaped before hardening into glass. The goldleaf label on this bottle for Hyoscy, known today as hyoscyamine, is a medicine still used to treat digestive problems, but it can be poisonous if consumed in large doses. An apothecary shop keeper would have dispensed small amounts to customers from this large bottle.
From the 2023 exhibition Liquidity: Art, Commodities, and Water, curated by Michael Hartman, Jonathan Little Cohen Associate Curator of American Art
First Year Student Enrichment Program - Cultures, Identities and Belongings, Francine A'Ness, Summer 2023
Liquidity: Art, Commodities, and Water, Israel Sack Gallery and the Rush Family Gallery, Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, July 29, 2023-June 16, 2024.
Thomas E. Tefft; to his son, Stanton E. Tefft and his wife Marie-Elaine Tefft, Bedford, New Hampshire; given to present collection, 2022.
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