Thecla Ampulla
Original Country
Sorting Title
Thecla Ampulla

The reverse of this flask (pictured here) depicts NULL standing with her hands behind her back and dressed in a robe. She is identified by an inscription which reads, "hagia thekl[a]", "Holy Thecla". To her right is the neck and head of a lion. Turning to face her from behind is an unidentified animal, perhaps a lioness or a bear. An inscription encircles the entire image which reads, "eulogia ton agion mena ame[n]", "blessing of Holy Menas, Amen".

The obverse of this flask (not pictured here) depicts St. Menas.

7th century
Style Genre
Pilgrimage Token
H 27 cm; Dm 17.5 cm
Format Medium


Original Location

The flask is associated with pilgrimage to Abu Mina in Egypt, and was probably produced at a workshop in or around Abu Mina.

Historical Context

Pilgrims called this ampulla and other such pilgrimage tokens "eulogiai", take-home blessings. Pilgrims would have filled this ampulla with oil, water, or dust from the holy site they visited. The sacred substance would then be used for medicinal purposes, protection, or to exorcise evil spirits.

Current Repository

Paris, Musée de Louvre, Départment des Antiquitiés grecques, étrusques, et romaines

Repository Number
MNC 1926
Photo Credit
Kornbluth Photography

Educational usage: Images on this site may be freely used in presentations for educational, non-commercial purposes. The large versions are sized correctly for classroom projection (PowerPoint friendly). If you find my photographs useful, please link my site to your own, your class's, and/or your institution's web site. Such links increase my visibility to clients.

Commercial usage: My images may not be used commercially without written permission. Please contact me if you wish to license them for commercial purposes. Higher-resolution versions are available.

Publication: My images may not be published without written permission. Please contact me if you wish to license them for publication. Reduced licensing fees are charged for use in scholarly, non-profit journals and books. Higher-resolution versions are available.

Contact: Genevra Kornbluth
10508 Forestgate Place, Glenn Dale, MD 20769 U.S.A.

Dina Boero
Administrator Notes

add bib and desc of object.

Image of Thecla Ampulla.