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Victorian Ruby Perfume and Salts Bottle c1860

Heading : 19th Century double-ended glass perfume and salts bottle
Date : c1860
Period : Victoria
Colour : Ruby gold glass
Body : Slice cut barrel body with white metal caps. One cap is hinged and the other a screw top, both of which work well.
Glass Type : Lead
Size : 10.5cm in length and approximately 2.3cm in diameter
Condition : A couple of small dings to one of the caps and one missing stopper
Restoration : None
Weight : 67 grams

Salt of hartshorne or smelling salts as they are known today were mixed with perfume and placed into a vinaigrette that one could hold close to the nose to mask the stenches of London, Birmingham, Glasgow, Auld Reekie and Manchester. With poor sanitation, little by way of regular refuse collection the cities of Britain were envelopped in a foul smelling miasma and suffered outbreaks of cholera, please read about the great stink of 1858. The engineer Joseph Bazalgette devised a solution whereby raw sewage was taken east from London before being pumped raw into the Thames away from the noses of the well to do parliamentarians. 

N. S Jenkins writing in 1854 attributes the development of such bottles to carry both smelling salts and perfume to the fashion for ladies to "have their waist constricted" which apparently gave rise to many ladies feeling faint. Corsetry was laced so tight and was so stiff with bone that it was difficult to breathe.

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  • Product Code: 2017062346
  • Availability: Sold
  • £80.00

Tags: old bottles, old glass bottles

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