Room IV, the alabaster urn
Urna di alabastro presso il Museo Archeologico Nazionale ad Aquileia. Foto di © Gianluca Baronchelli
This rare urn found in the early twentieth century in a necropolis north of the city of Aquileia comes from distant Egypt and strikes for its exotic elegance.
What makes it special is the precious material it is made of, alabaster, which distinguishes it from the more common terracotta, stone, glass or metal urns found in other tombs.
Along with the raw material used, its fine workmanship suggests that contained the ashes of an important person or tied to a prestigious family. Inside, the remains of the deceased were collected in a linen cloth, before the container was wrapped in a cloth and placed on a layer of lime inside a larger stone urn.