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Author Topic: What's "Bristol glass"?  (Read 3049 times)

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Offline Frank

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Re: What's "Bristol glass"?
« Reply #10 on: March 16, 2008, 02:08:46 PM »
Mentions in literature:
Percy Bates wrote an article in 1905: An Eighteenth Century Industry: Bristol Enamel Glass.
E M Elville includes Bristol Glass in Paperweights and Other Glass Curiosities 1954 and later.
Moore 1935 in Old Glass European and American
 
Schwind, Arlene Palmer, Weeden, Cyril and Witt, Cleo (1984), "Bristol Glass": 94 pages 18 colour 28 b/w.
Witt, Cleo (1984), "Introducing Bristol Glass": 32 pages 8 b/w 18 colour.
Bedford, John (1964), "Bristol and Other Coloured Glass": 64 pages b/w colour.
Pountney, W. J. (1938), "A Short History of Bristol - Cut Glass": 8 page booklet 4 b/w.

But apart from those are no obvious specific references to Bristol blue. Bedford does debunk the myths in his book, perhaps someone has a copy of that to hand.

I suspect that this is just a folklore that has never been used in any serious study. It might be found in some of the Glass Encyclopaedia of course.
Frank A.
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Offline krsilber

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Re: What's "Bristol glass"?
« Reply #11 on: March 16, 2008, 07:12:06 PM »
"It might be found in some of the Glass Encyclopaedia of course."

Indeed, it is.  Newman's  An Illustrated Dictionary of Glass has entries for Bristol blue glass ("Blue-coloured glassware, made in England at Bridstol and at many other factories furing the 18th century, but often all such ware is erroneously attributed to Bristol...") and Bristol glassware:  "Various types and styles of glassware made at Bristol, in western England, which was the site in the 17th and 18th centuries of many glassworks..."

Very interesting that you all confine your definition to blue (and green?) glass, or glass that was made with a colourant imported at Bristol.  The latter seems like a particularly tough thing to track or prove!

"To complicate things, there is another misnomer for Bristol - the opaque painted vases from the end of the Victorian era. These are invariably Bohemian, but because there has been a glass industry in Bristol until the beginning of the 19th ct. which decorated milk glass, the  name stuck." 
Yep, this would be the common view apparently held by many of my copatriots, except it often extends to opaque glasses of other colors.  In fact, until joining you all, I don't remember ever seeing any transparent blue glass described as Bristol!  But I don't understand the "invariably Bohemian" part.  Surely some of it is English (or American, or French), though not necessarily from Bristol.

I've also heard someone confine the term to opaque glass with a particular kind of pontil-less foot.

Americans! ::) ;)
Kristi


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Offline Ivo

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Re: What's "Bristol glass"?
« Reply #12 on: March 16, 2008, 07:38:38 PM »
Believe me, this has been an item of extensive research and no specific glass industry has shown up in the city of Bristol since the early 1800s.

The term Bristol blue is  an adjective referring to a colour and is specifically English - not an attribution to "many glass houses around the city of Bristol" - we could not find a single one.

Bristol decoration on milk glass is well recorded - please check the books Frank listed. What was imported at the end of the 19th century is of a different style, weight, decoration, colour  and market.  These should not be confused.
Ivo
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Offline Frank

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Re: What's "Bristol glass"?
« Reply #13 on: March 16, 2008, 10:17:03 PM »
There we go Mr Newman  ;)
Frank A.
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Online Lustrousstone

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Re: What's "Bristol glass"?
« Reply #14 on: March 17, 2008, 07:08:49 AM »
The import of blue colorant through Bristol is actually probably an easy thing to track. England is a small place, there weren't/aren't that many ports.

Offline Ivo

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Offline krsilber

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Re: What's "Bristol glass"?
« Reply #16 on: March 17, 2008, 09:52:37 PM »
Boy, you English sure managed to produce a lot of great glass for such a small country!

I found a cheap copy of Bedford's book, so maybe that will help clarify things for me.  How nice to have people around who can suggest appropriate reading - thanks, Frank! ;D

(On the other hand, the last thing I need is to diversify my interests more, when I can't manage to master those I have! ::))
Kristi


"The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and all science."

- Albert Einstein

Offline KevinH

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Re: What's "Bristol glass"?
« Reply #17 on: March 17, 2008, 11:02:12 PM »
Amazon.com currently has two copies of Bristol Glass by Witt, Weeden & Schwind (1986 edition) - although prices are "from $59.85". [My second-hand copy of the 1984 initial publication cost £9.95!

Also there are many available copies of John Bedford's Bristol and Other Coloured Glass starting at just $3.88.
KevinH

Offline Andy

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Re: What's "Bristol glass"?
« Reply #18 on: March 17, 2008, 11:03:38 PM »
Kristi,
this is the UK! we invented everything over here, i see you are from the US, How nice that
you have worked out how to make nice glass , over there at last! ;)
He He He  ;D
Only joking!

Cheers
Andy 8)
"Born to lose, Live to win." Ian (Lemmy) Kilmister Motorhead (1945-????)

Offline krsilber

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Re: What's "Bristol glass"?
« Reply #19 on: March 18, 2008, 07:47:31 AM »
Yeah, as if you invented glass!  I suppose you invented the wheel, too? ;D

We caught up quick, though.  The best of our ABP beats the pants off anything you guys did for rich cut. ;) ;D  That could have been a style thing...  I just heard someone say that at the time the British despised American Brilliant glass because it was gaudy.  Is that true?  That would explain why the super sparkly never caught on in Europe at the time.

Kristi


"The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and all science."

- Albert Einstein

 

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