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Author Topic: Old English, or what?  (Read 705 times)

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Offline w84it

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Old English, or what?
« on: July 14, 2008, 06:30:09 PM »
Noticed this on ebay.   Sold for not a lot.   Does anyone recognise it?   Note the canes at the centre spiral outwards.  And the dome shape.
Weightforit   -  mad about marbries, crowns and swirls ...

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Offline alexander

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Re: Old English, or what?
« Reply #1 on: July 14, 2008, 06:39:57 PM »
Definately OE - I was away when it ended and my tiny bid didn't stand up.

Had I noticed the spiral I'd have put in a higher bid. It does look intentional.
Norwegian glass collector

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Offline KevinH

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Re: Old English, or what?
« Reply #2 on: July 14, 2008, 07:43:34 PM »
I am not so sure about the "spiral" being intentional. But it may have been.

Some patterns, such as with this Bacchus heart pattern weight seem to be deliberate, based on the way the canes are set within the overall design, even though parts look like just a slippage of canes.

In the Bacchus heart, note that at positions 1 and 4, the outer edge canes slip inwards. For 4, the outer cane appears to have just pushed the next row canes aside without any major affect on others. For 1, the "push" appears to continue alll the way to the centre canes, but this may have been a result of the setting of canes in the centre rather than a "push" from the edge. The central area clearly shows at 2 and 3 that there are additional canes (two at 2 and three at 3) added at those parts of the inner circle. This strongly suggests a deliberate pattern design with the line of canes from 1 simply moving in to fill the shape at the centre.

However note also that, as is often the case, different sized canes may be used in various positions and that in itself could cause a slippage in a regular concentric design. Although the eBay weight shows a similar line of "slipped" canes, as with the Bacchus, there are no addtiional canes around the centre which seems to have just parted at one position allowing outer canes to slide inwards.

But please feel free to disagree. :)

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Offline tropdevin

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Re: Old English, or what?
« Reply #3 on: July 15, 2008, 07:05:31 AM »

A couple of points.

1. This is an Old English weight, and it went cheap, even though it is rather dull! It belongs to the group I have labelled OE2, all of whose members (comprising bottles and paperweights) have very similar simple canes, similar specific gravity, and a limited colour pallet. They are usually good concentrics, although I have seen a couple of closepacks.  I wrote a 14 page illustrated article on classification of OE paperweights in the 2007 PCA Bulletin, and have written shorter ones in various PCC Newsletters. Below is an image of typical items of that group. They were made in the 1850s.

2. I think it very rare to find an intentional spiral or heart shape in an old millefiori weight. Never say never, but I think it is just about always due to slippage of the setup during the pick up. I am 99.99% certain this spiral is accidental. It is impossible to make a concentric paperweight from identical sized circular canes without small gaps that can allow movement when heated (unless it is infinite diameter). So you find slippage in many OE weights (including many Bacchus), in St Louis, and so on. In practice, makers adjust the cane sizes to get a tighter fit - hence the 'rogue' canes in some weights.  They are not worker's signatures - they are pragmatic solutions to a real problem.

Alan  (The Paperweight People

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The comments in this posting reflect the opinion of the author, Alan Thornton, and not that of the owners, administrators or moderators of this board. Comments are copyright Alan Thornton.

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