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Author Topic: 2 Old Drinking Glasses- Help With Origin & Date Please!  (Read 354 times)

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Offline MatW

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2 Old Drinking Glasses- Help With Origin & Date Please!
« on: February 19, 2014, 11:36:51 AM »
Dear Forum Members,
I have recently bought 2 glasses. I did some research and think they could be from 18th century??? I showed them in a general antiques forum and there they tried to help me, but they were not sure about age and origin. The big one is 16, 5 cm high and the small one (with the engraved pattern) 10 cm. Both have a pointil mark in the centre of the foot. The big one has a lot of air bubbles and whitish inclusions, the small one has small bubbles but no inclusions. Is it possible to find a date of production and where they were made? A suggestion in the other forum was England, but I am not sure...
Thank you for any help in advance,
Mat

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Offline Paul S.

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Re: 2 Old Drinking Glasses- Help With Origin & Date Please!
« Reply #1 on: February 19, 2014, 07:11:09 PM »
hello Mat  -  welcome to the GMB :)

I'd suggest these aren't English from the C18  -  the glass appears too gritty/bubbled, and I don't recognize the stem formation.                      They also appear not to be of lead glass (you might flick them for a ring), and in my opinion the wheel engraving is too grainy and without recognizable style for the period you are suggesting.             You don't mention wear on the underside of the foot - which should be very noticeable if these were C18.
The snapped pontil scar occurs at various times since, and appears on glasses that are made to look older than they really are, and regret that even if these do turn out to be period you will never find a maker  -  the world is awash with drinking glasses destined to always remain anonymous, unfortunately.          I think the bowls are both 'bell' shaped.
As you say, dating pieces by the pc screen only isn't infallible  -  I'd like to be proven wrong, but feel these lack the necessary quality.

It's a fallacy that because a piece of glass is 200 plus years old, it will be crude in manufacture - the C18 produced some of the most beautiful and well crafted drinking glasses ever made.

Sorry to sound depressing  -  how/where did you acquire these? :)

 


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Offline MatW

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Re: 2 Old Drinking Glasses- Help With Origin & Date Please!
« Reply #2 on: February 19, 2014, 09:13:36 PM »
Hello Paul,
thank you for answering me! I bought these in an antique shop in Athens, which normally has nothing special in its shelves. But that does not mean anything for antique shops here have from time to time some nice things and they usually do not care what they have. The glasses were very cheap - 5 the two of them, so I am not dissapointed if they are not what I thought they might be. Nevertheless both show a lot of wear on the foot. I have one other 18th century glass, a twisted stem glass from Northern Germany, that I bought from a reputable dealer there, and It shows very comparable signs of wear. The big glass sounds like lead glass when flicked, for the small glass I am not sure, it has a very "metallic" sound, almost like when you hit a stone with a hammer.  Maybe they could be from Germany too? I have seen some German glasses that are more crude than the English ones and also had very crude engravings...
Regards, Mat :)

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Offline Antwerp1954

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Re: 2 Old Drinking Glasses- Help With Origin & Date Please!
« Reply #3 on: February 20, 2014, 01:15:07 PM »
I don't want to be too negative but they remind me of two of my glasses both of which I believe are "repro". See photos. The first was possibly made in Venice just over a hundred years ago. The second I think is a commemorative glass for King Christian of Sweden - don't know it's age, but it's certainly not 250 years old and may even be less than 50 years old.

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Offline MatW

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Re: 2 Old Drinking Glasses- Help With Origin & Date Please!
« Reply #4 on: February 20, 2014, 06:59:23 PM »
Hi Antwerp, thank you for your remarks,most likely you and Paul are right.
But, I will just give it a last try and show some details of the inclusions in the big glass. Sorry for the colours in the photo, it was already dark outside and so I had to use artificial light. Actually the colour of the inclusions is white, and they are up to 2 mm big. There are also some black dirt particles you can see in the photo of the stem. I have read on a site about 18th c glass that these inclusions are a typical sign of glass of that period and that later on they do not occur any more. Is that wrong?
Mat

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Offline neil53

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Re: 2 Old Drinking Glasses- Help With Origin & Date Please!
« Reply #5 on: February 21, 2014, 09:48:27 AM »
Hi Mat,

The inclusions are typically signs of older glass but is easy to replicate if a modern practitioner really wanted to do so.  18th century European glass was often made in forest clearings using charcoal for fuel, which was later replaced by coal fired furnaces.  Little bits of ash would creep into the pot and generally settle towards the edges and find their way into the finished product.  There is some evidence to there having been two grades of glass in the 18th century - tale and best glass - with tale glass being from the edge of the pot, and the best (clearer) glass coming from the middle.  I've had dwarf ale glasses that have been so full of inclusions that you can't see through them.

As for your glasses featured in this stream they don't initially strike me as being 18th century but early to mid 19th century continental glasses would also potentially have rough pontil marks, inclusions and air bubbles.  If you are going to the Cambridge Glass Fair on Sunday then I am sure that there will be people there (including Peter and I) who would be interested in seeing the glasses. 

Best wishes
Neil

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Offline oldglassman

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Re: 2 Old Drinking Glasses- Help With Origin & Date Please!
« Reply #6 on: February 21, 2014, 11:08:25 AM »
 HI MattW,
                 Well!!  its time for me to throw a spanner in the works,
 Lets start with this comment ,

"The inclusions are typically signs of older glass but is easy to replicate if a modern practitioner really wanted to do so. "
 Sorry but I have to disagree,inclusions such as these occur from poor temperature control in the furnace and poor quality materials in the batch,for a modern glass maker to replicate these they would also need to replicate the conditions that the originals were made in,today's materials and furnaces are much more refined and accurate re temperature etc,and why would someone want to reproduce cr-----p(sorry !! poor quality)  glass ???

The inclusions on these glasses are obviously silica and iron and have nothing at all to do with "forest Glass" production.

 Now onto Antwerp1952's comment "they remind me of two of my glasses both of which I believe are "repro".

 The first glass is NOT a reproduction an 18th c glass , it is an early 20th interpretation of one( Italian probably but Venice I don't know  :-\ ), no 18th c twist glasses have the twist going from left to right down the stem,therefor it cant be a reproduction of an 18th c piece.

  My opinion of the 2 glasses , I believe they are 18thc pieces ,probably the 2nd  1/2 and more than likely from the Low Countries, ie Northern Germany, Belgium ,The Netherlands, the bowl forms,the elongated almost inverted baluster stem I come across frequently along with the crude engraving, 1 appears to be poor quality lead and and the other non lead, as with everything in life you will find the good and the less good , glass was made for a market the best glass for the top end and whole heaps made for the lower ends, not everyone could afford the best top quality glass,so as with today there is always something similar at all price levels for the many different sizes of pockets,

"If you are going to the Cambridge Glass Fair on Sunday"  ;)  I think it's a long way from Greece for a day trip , I could be wrong though,
   Cheers ,
               Peter.

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Offline MatW

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Re: 2 Old Drinking Glasses- Help With Origin & Date Please!
« Reply #7 on: February 21, 2014, 02:00:43 PM »
Hello again, nice to hear that l may have been right about the age of these glasses. "Low Countries" would be great, because originally I come from that region of Europe, Northern Germany to be precise... And yes, it will be a bit difficult for me to come to Cambridge this Sunday, hopefully some other time!  :'(
Thank you all again for all the information, this is a great place to learn about glass!
Mat

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