A Majestic Late 19thC Glass Apothecary Bottle for Royal Orchid


Origin: British
Period: Late Nineteenth Century
Provenance: Unknown
Date: c.1890
Circumference: 12.25 inches
Height: 10 inches

The label under glass bottle having the original squat spherical stopper over protruding lip and frosted neck, the label for ‘Royal Orchid’ with canted corners and gilt border.

There are no chips, cracks or signs of restoration, the inner red border has faded but the rest of the label is showing good colour. The inside of the bottle could be cleaned if so desired.

This bottle would have carried the essence of an orchid, for medicinal purposes. Used for centuries throughout the world, for many different purposes, from scents to ice creams, medicines and aphrodisiacs, the Orchid family is claimed to be the largest plant family with about 30 000 species. 

Historically speaking, the Chinese were the first to use and document their use of orchids as aphrodisiacs, and in fact as a medicinal plant altogether. In Greece especially, this flower and its scent were said to arouse women completely, making them more lustful and more effective lovers to their husbands. This belief made the orchid invaluably priceless and today there are at least 50 orchid species used especially in traditional Chinese medicine formulas. The use for dried orchids ranges from immune system build-up, to cancer treatment, eye-sight improvement, and quick recovery after sex.

This is an attractive example in good original condition, and with a very decorative, uncommon and appealing label; the “Royal Orchid” now a popular name for hotels and restaurants around the world.