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[al-uh-bas-tron, -truh n, -bah-stron, -struh n] /ˌæl əˈbæs trɒn, -trən, -ˈbɑ strɒn, -strən/
noun, plural alabastra
[al-uh-bas-truh, -bah-struh] /ˌæl əˈbæs trə, -ˈbɑ strə/ (Show IPA),
alabastrons. Greek and Roman Antiquity
a jar characteristically having an elongated shape, narrow neck, flat-rimmed mouth, and rounded base requiring a stand or support, chiefly used for fragrant ointments.
Compare aryballos, askos, lekythos.
1840-50; < Greek alábastron alabaster vase


[al-uh-bas-truh m, -bah-struh m] /ˌæl əˈbæs trəm, -ˈbɑ strəm/
noun, plural alabastra
[al-uh-bas-truh, -bah-struh] /ˌæl əˈbæs trə, -ˈbɑ strə/ (Show IPA),
alabastrums. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Encyclopedia Article for alabastra


elongated, narrow-necked flask, used as a perfume or unguent container. The Greek alabastron has no handles but often lugs (ear-shaped projections), sometimes pierced with string holes. There are three types of classical alabastron: a basic Corinthian bulbous shape about 3 to 4 inches (8 to 10 cm) high that appeared from the mid-7th century BC and was common in Greece (see ); a long, pointed version found in eastern Greek, Etruscan, and Italo-Corinthian pottery; and an Attic type, from 4 to 8 inches (10 to 20 cm) high, with a rounded base and occasionally two small lugs, common from the late 6th to the early 4th century BC. All three types are found in pottery form. The last two types are justifiably named alabastron, as they were made of alabaster.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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