Pilgrim Flask (Ampulla)

Early Medieval 

 replica: hand-crafted from an original at ancientlamps.com

date of the original: 4th-7th century AD 

provenance of the original: the Shrine of St. Menas, near Alexandria, Egypt

description: Early Medieval. Terracotta replica of terracotta original. This pilgrim flask, or ampulla, was found at the shrine of St. Menas (see also: Ivory Pyxis). It depicts the saint flanked by two camels. Ampullae were used by pilgrims to transport holy water from shrines and other religious sites. Length 10 cm.