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Posted by / 18-Aug-2017 09:47

Dating old ink bottles

A Bit About Balsams: A Chapter in the History of 19th Century Medicine - by Betty Blasi.

This is certainly one of the "good" bottle books in that even though it is somewhat narrow in focus (balsam medicines) it includes a lot of history about a lot of the bottles listed - which is in the hundreds.

This hard to find and well researched book is an excellent source of information on of the common and not so common medicine bottles made during the 19th century.

Profusely illustrated with pictures of all of the covered bottles, advertising, and very large section at the back of the book that describes the history behind the bottles listed.

: Like with all collectibles and antiques, good advice is always to "Buy the book before the bottle." Knowledge is power and even safety (of your money) when dealing with any collectible - bottles even more so than many other fields of collecting because of the incredible diversity of historic bottles.

Beyond that, the history behind the glass companies that made the bottles - as well as the individuals and businesses that ordered and used the bottles - is simply fascinating..isn't that a big part of why we collect bottles?

As the image shows, this is the "gold" cover version; others were printed with gray covers but all seem to have been printed at the same time by the same printing outfit.

Wine would also have been drunk during everyday meals, which often featured toasting.'As a medicine, social lubricant, mind-altering substance, and highly-valued commodity, wine became the focus of religious cults, pharmacopoeias, cuisines, economics, and society throughout the ancient Near East,' said Dr Batiuk.'The infinite range of flavours and aromas of today's 8,000-10,000 grape varieties are the end result of the domesticated Eurasian grapevine being transplanted and crossed with wild grapevines elsewhere over and over again.' Scientists from the University of Toronto and the Georgian National Museum believe the practice of crushing grapes to produce a heady alcoholic drink started up to 1,000 years earlier in the South Caucasus region between eastern Europe and western Asia.

Ceramic pottery fragments from two sites about 30 miles south of the Georgian capital Tbilisi contained residues that yielded chemical signatures of grapes and wine.

For the Neolithic Georgians, the drinking and offering of wine would have permeated nearly every aspect of life from medical practice to special celebrations.

Pictured is a Neolithic jar from the site of Khramis Didi Gora'As a medicine, social lubricant, mind-altering substance, and highly-valued commodity, wine became the focus of religious cults, pharmacopoeias, cuisines, economics, and society throughout the ancient Near East,' said Dr Batiuk.'The infinite range of flavours and aromas of today's 8,000-10,000 grape varieties are the end result of the domesticated Eurasian grapevine being transplanted and crossed with wild grapevines elsewhere over and over again.'The Eurasian grapevine that now accounts for 99.9 per cent of wine made in the world today, has its roots in Caucasia.'When asked how much the jars would be worth, Dr Batiuk could not provide a figure, but mentioned that the one on display at the museum in Georgia is considered so valuable that when they had the Georgian exhibit in the Bordeaux wine museum this year, a copy was provided instead of the original.

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State-of-the-art methods of chemical extraction revealed tartaric acid, and the organic acids malic, succinic and citric, the researchers reported in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

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