The Glass from Tarrha

Thomas S. Buechner
1960 Hesperia  
g EVEN of the nine trenches dug at Tarrha produced more than four hundred kY fragments of glass. Nine-tenths of these are unidentifiable, probably from the walls of blown vessels. Most of the forms and techniques suggested by the remaining tenth appear to be the more ordinary sort, common in the Roman Empire during the first and second centuries after Christ. The purpose of this brief note is to list the recognizable types and to illustrate the unusual forms of deterioration common to much of
more » ... common to much of the Tarrha glass.' Although one complete vessel was found (No. 12), not a single object could be assembled from fragments. In addition, the forms and techniques represented by the identifiable fragments do not fall into a neat, chronologically limited pattern. The value of even this small group of recognizable bits is lessened by the fact that many are very small, frequently badly misshapen and heavily corroded. Some are from well known and well dated vessel types (for example, Nos. 1, 26) while others can be identified by technique of manufacture (for example, No. 19). In most cases, however, there is only a small section of rim or base or, more frequently, a tiny bit from the wall of a vessel, which makes it practically impossible to associate a specific fragment with a vessel type. Of the pieces discussed here to which parallels are cited, only a very small percentage can be safely identified with a known type. Fragment No. 2, from a cored vessel, is probably the earliest specimen, either Hellenistic or-less likely-pre-Hellenistic. Among the latest found is No. 26, a fragment from a vessel embellished with flat, oval prunts or blobs of blue glass, probably of the fourth century after Christ. This indicates a span of about five hundred years, although most of the fragments appear to belong to the early Roman Empire, that is, between the first and second centuries after Christ, with the majority probably in the first century. The later examples are few and may either'be intrusions (No. 26 was found on the s'urface near the west steps leading down to th-e river) or incorrectly identified. No. 23 represents a special problem as it has certain characteristics associated with goblets of the early Islamic period.
doi:10.2307/147334 fatcat:3p5dd5guszfjna3neuwth62voa