Extremely Rare and early Female silver Kohl pot with filigree design on the container and interesting early top. Purpose: the black Kohl was used as make-up by women. This kohl container is very special as the cover is identical to the covers of 19th century silver gun powder boxes, the cover of gun powder containers and the silver toe-pin of early Omani sandals. The side of the container is decorated with some filigree similar to that on a Saidi khanjar. All these features suggest that the Kohl-pot was made in the 19th century! Finally the application stick is also very finely decorated.
The Stick is used to apply the Kohl and the pot is used to store it. Children, men and women in Oman wear the cosmetic Kohl round the eye, which gives the (already large) eyes more expression.
Local believe is that it improves eyesight however in practice many people LOST eyesight due to eye infections by the practice of passing the application stick around from person to person.
Kohl is paste traditionally made from finely powdered sulphide of antimony mixed with rosewater. However it is also made form wood-ash mixed with vegetable oils and other means. The book by Lane (ref 3) contains detailed information on the use and manufacture of Kohl which is almost identical to that in Oman. Oman Adorned (ref 4) page 131/133 contains a recipe for Kohl. Weight 80 grams. The container including the eye is 5 cm high. The application stick including the eye is 10,5 cm long (probably a bit shortened over time)
Antique Omani silver kohl container for females