Old Bottle – New ‘Treasure’

A few weeks ago my husband was doing some repairs  to the old lean-to building out the back of the house which houses a toilet (for use when working outside – eg in welly boots and mucky coats). Now this building may have been used for such a function for many years, or it may not. For, when removing some of the slates before repair work to the roof, he came across an old bottle.

There is something beautiful about an old bottle, which judging by its style was probably made in the late 1800s. So, from junk, propped up on the top of the interior wall of an old out-building, it has become  a minor ‘treasure’  – something interesting to be handled and admired.

This bottle was for Percy’s Rennet (click on the pictures to see the words better). 

This would have been made  in a shaped metal hinged mould with the words embossed on the sides and  the glass would have been blown into the shape.


Rennet is used in cheese making, or at the very least, to make junket. You can still buy rennet for junkets in the shops in the local town. If you’ve never had Junket here’s the recipe

RECIPE for Junket – a dessert often given to invalids or children (clotted cream is a Cornish or Devon speciality cream – thick with a golden crust)


2 pints milk
1 tablespoon caster/superfine sugar
2 teaspoons rennet (or follow instructions on bottle for amount to be used)
1/4 teaspoon powdered cinnamon or nutmeg
1 tablespoon brandy or rum (optional)
clotted cream (optional)


– Warm the milk until it feels neither cold not warm (blood temp)
– Put it into a large serving dish and stir in the rennet and sugar.
– Add the brandy or rum. (if used)
– Stir once or twice and leave in the large bowl or or pour into smaller dishes – leave in a warm room to set.
– When set, cover with clotted cream (if used) and sprinkle with cinnamon or nutmeg.


At another time we also found this little bottle, made from a white glass.

This is my picture quiz for this month.

What did this bottle hold when in use?

The first correct answer left in the comments will WIN an e-copy of

Nothing Ever Happens Here by Ann Foweraker.

Click HERE to read descriptions, reviews and read first 3 chapters in pdf of this book and Divining the Line and Some Kind of Synchrony


I really love to hear from you all.. have you found such ‘old junk’ that today becomes a minor treasure or a collectable? What’s the best thing you’ve found? or just your favourite?  Do share and do have a guess at the picture quiz!

24 /2: It has been a week of thinking and guessing. I believe it is time for a clue as the guesses have dried up .. .  if you have already guessed once you are allowed to guess again!

CLUE 1:  This bottle held a commodity we all use everyday – though it now it comes in a different form

OK – as we are well into March I guess I’ll have to give the answer to this Picture quiz. This little bottle was used for TOOTH-POWDER. It may well have been a ‘sample’ bottle as it is so small – or a ‘travel’ bottle. It dates from the end of the 1800s.  As I mentioned in the comments it is missing a small cap. More often than not Tooth-powders came in a shallow ceramic pot with a decorated ceramic lid – so this is unusual. Thanks for everyone who did have a guess – but I’m afraid as no one was even near, the prize awaits the next quick quiz.


11 thoughts on “Old Bottle – New ‘Treasure’

    • Hi Liv, I can see where you are coming from with that idea with its shape, however I can tell you, and everyone else, that it is not part of something larger – though it is quite small when you look at it beside the pen there isn’t it?
      Good guess though, and you are alowed more than one go!

  1. You really got me trying to figure out what the milk glass bottle could be. I can’t figure out by the odd shape what it can be. Seems like it should be for medicine or eyedrops, but I give up. You got me. When will you tell us?
    Thanks for the rennet recipe, my grandmother used to make it when I was small–love it.

    • Hi Cora, Yeah, it’s a cute little bottle isn’t it? And both your ideas sound quite logical. I’m not saying what it is for a while – give a few other people a chance to have a guess – but I’ll post the answer by the end of the month, definitely! I like Junket too, though my husband doesn’t appreciate it at all (not a real pudding!)

  2. I haven’t had Junket for years! Wow thanks for the recipe. As for the little white bottle – I’m thinking that some kind of flexible tube or funnel may have been attached for liquids to go in or out?

    • Hi Margaret, Thanks for having a guess!
      I can see how the shape makes you think of attaching a tube – but, no, it didn’t have a tube attached. It is missing a small cap that kept the contents in – but that is all.
      The junket recipe still relies on finding junket rennet available near you though – not sure I could find it everywhere in the UK…..

  3. No worries Helen – easily done – and I only posted it today because I thought I ought to put a few people out of their misery and reveal the answer. I’m working on a quick quiz for March now….

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