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Author Topic: E.Varnish mercury glass with embossed seal, circa 1849  (Read 4892 times)

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Re: E.Varnish mercury glass with embossed seal, circa 1849
« Reply #230 on: November 10, 2017, 12:58:51 AM »
Topic:  Where was the glass blown?


Two new potentially interesting items here - both mold blown

https://www.woolleyandwallis.co.uk/Lot/?sale=PG081013&lot=49&id=253609

I don't know which of these in the group have the Varnish and Hale Thomson plugs (some do but not named), but the Parkington collection is named, so possibly they originated from that?

The interest is the gold one in the middle (CH British Glass 1800-1914 shows a mold blown item and specifically mentions it as of interest in this Varnish glass story),  and the green item on the right which has a familiar ribbed mold shape similar to a perfume bottle apparently made by  Buquoy featured on this board (and also possibly similar to French items in Gorge de Pigeon coloured glass).


With Kev's (??) access to the Parkington catalogue we may be able to ascertain which of those have the Varnish and Hale Thomson plugs.  And then we may have mold blown items  to add to the one in the Charles Hajdamach book, which we may have a good chance of matching somewhere along the line.

m

Edited 23 Nov 2017 to add ...
See Reply #236 for info on the only item of the nine in the above sale that was in the Parkington sale

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Re: E.Varnish mercury glass with embossed seal, circa 1849
« Reply #231 on: November 10, 2017, 01:36:14 AM »
Topic:  Where was the glass blown?

I know this is going to put the cat amongst the pigeons but I'm just leaving this here for future reference:

https://www.cmog.org/artwork/fathers-gift-maria-1860

The shape is reminiscent of the op's.  New England Glass company were making silvered glass using Thomas Kidd's W. Kidd's patent for silvering glass by 1854 (see page 143):

click here

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Re: E.Varnish mercury glass with embossed seal, circa 1849
« Reply #232 on: November 11, 2017, 01:50:39 PM »
Topic:  Where was the glass blown?



I'm going to leave some additional thoughts here :)

1) In this link the beautiful purple glass item colour is remarkably similar to a colour referred to as 'violet' in this reference (though that may just be a translation of 'amethyst'),  and produced  by Harrach (before 1839) and to a 'light sphere' made in Hungary, before 1837.   (ref: Farbenglas II , Neuwirth W, pp126)

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/58/GroupMercuryCover3.JPG

Note - there is one other ribbed mold blown item by Count Buquoy Glassworks in Silberberg (item before 1836) shown on the page of that reference also in violet, but the colour is very slightly more blue it seems to me than either the Harrach or the Hungarian light sphere.

Were English glassmakers making a violet glass at this time?

Of course it may just be that all amethysts look remarkably similar when they've been silvered, and it's incredibly difficult to tell from photographs -  But just wondering.
So for example, the amethyst of the early 1800s that I think of appears to be quite bluey or browny rather than with that violet undertone of the salt on Wikipedia if you see what I mean?  I've added one example here to show it:
https://scottishantiques.com/amethyst

And these are the most similar in colour to the salt I've been able to find in that they are less 'blue or brown' but they still don't have that 'violet' type tinge:
https://scottishantiques.com/amethyst-wine-glasses



2) In this link the green salt on the right appears to have been blown into a ribbed mold.  This has similarities with a mold I've seen used on the violet glass from Harrach where the ribs are indented, but also to a mold used by Buquoy  where the ribs protrude outwards (ref:  see as above)

https://www.woolleyandwallis.co.uk/Lot/?sale=PG081013&lot=49&id=253609

Here is another ref to a Buquoy flakon with protruding ribs to show what I mean.  It's not the same as the one in the book btw as the one in the book has a different cutting on the top of each rib but they protrude the same way and look the same ribs iyswim?

http://www.glassmessages.com/index.php/topic,53466.msg303506.html#msg303506




3) I'm still curious about the gold inners to some of the items (especially see the two salts in the Woolley and Wallis link above.  Is it possible they were blown clear, shaped the stem of the item on the rod, then tipped the top in amber glass melt whilst still on the rod,  and then shaped the top inwards?
Just asking because the cross patterned mold blown item above seems to have been made completely in amber glass and then silvered inside basically.





4)  Is it possible the Art Journal misused the term of their description for the red glass? (I'll come back to that one).




5)  This piece is interesting.  It appears to be a hollow vase (hollow all the way down to the foot blown in one piece as it were) and appears to have a very large polished pontil mark left on it.  Then it appears to have had a hole cut in the middle to silver it and insert the plug.  So what I mean is, they didn't just cut a hole where a rough pontil mark was left.  The item was blown hollow, cased, a large pontil mark was polished in and then supplied presumably?

https://www.1stdibs.com/furniture/dining-entertaining/glass/varnish-vase-blue-luster/id-f_1032800/







m


Offline KevinH

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Re: E.Varnish mercury glass with embossed seal, circa 1849
« Reply #233 on: November 11, 2017, 04:26:18 PM »
A couple of extra links for reference, although I am not sure whether or not we have seen them before ...

Plarr’s Lives of the Fellows Online (pertaining to the Royal College of Surgeons):
Thomson, Frederick J H Hale (1799 - 1860) (Note the extra initials in the name.)
The details suggest at least two sides to Mr Thomson's character. They also suggest some further information may be found elsewhere, such as for Thomson versus Sir Charles Forbes, and also Thomson versus Sir Anthony Carlisle. The comments also touch on the "Glass-silvering Company" being a disastrous speculation and the cause of Thomson's death.

Hunt's Hand-Book to the Official Catalogues of the Great Exhibition: Vol 2
This is a partial digitizing of a modern reprint by Cambridge Library Collection
End of page 588 and start of page 589
Gives a slightly different perspective of "Drayton + hermetically sealed"! And shows that one of the "official" sources gives an incorrect overview of who achieved what with regard to Drayton / Thomson.
KevinH

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Re: E.Varnish mercury glass with embossed seal, circa 1849
« Reply #234 on: November 11, 2017, 04:45:27 PM »
Hi Kev

Regarding your point one:
Yes I did link to the description of Thomson and his character I think in the post when I reported his death.  There was a long report of it in the Westminster hospital papers as well.


Regarding your point two,
In my opinion;
a) the process they are describing at the end of page 588 and going on to page 599 under the heading of Illuminated and Embroidered glass is  the Kidd's Patent of embroidered silvered glass  (see my explanation below) - and I have read numerous reports about this and the patent.

b) The next point down from there under the heading 'Silvered Glass' describes exactly what we know about Drayton and Thomson and the Thomson silvered glass and in the right way.  It is accurately reported in my opinion.


Re Kidd's Patent Embroidered and Silvered Glass:

- Examples of Kidd's patent embroidered and silvered glass was done that way from what I have read.
- There is mention iirc of a plate made of clear glass, then cased with white opaline glass then cased on top of that with ruby coloured glass (or it might have been clear glass as base layer, cased with white opaline and then with ruby glass and then topped (uppermost layer) with clear with the clear glass being the uppermost surface of the plate . 
- The top of the plate as far as I made out was completely flat to the touch. 
- The underneath of the plate had been engraved or cut through with a design, so some of it then showing clear glass from the top,some leaving red glass showing and some presumably leaving the white opaline glass showing.  Then some of it, presumably the bits that had been cut back to the clear top layer of the plate, would be silvered. 
So from the top of the plate you would see some silvered design, some red design and some white opaline presumably.


And it is to this Kidd's Patent silver embroidered glass that I was referring a little earlier in the thread, when I mentioned that the New England glass company were producing this type of glass using Kidd's Patent by 1854.


And now I have written that I'm wondering if Kidd engraved and silvered a Bohemian plate?


Thomson had competition for silvered glass, specifically for silvered glass FLAT items. 
The problem with him having competition for silvered glass flat items, is that they were the ones with the mass selling point in my opinion:
They could be sold to furniture makers for insets in furniture cupboards and doors, they could be used by mirror makers to surround mirrors decoratively, they could be used for finger plates on doors, etc.

However ... there was a problem with them.  I am not sure they were backed and hermetically sealed. 
i.e. Thomson's win was that he patented double walled glass and knew the items had to be hermetically sealed to prevent damage and the silver tarnishing I suppose.

I have no idea how he did not become more successful but I suspect it might be because he was embezzled out of what would now be millions of pounds and he simply did not have the money to progress his idea.
He felt it could be used for reflectors, lenses etc. and that is where there would have been lots of money to be made I suppose.

After he went bankrupt a German chemist worked on the silver idea further for use on telescopes I believe.



Kev, do you have the Parkington catalogue handy to see if any of those mold blown items are in there please?  Just curious to know what might have been said if anything.
Edited 23 Nov 2017 to add ...
See Reply #236 for info on the only item of the nine in the Woolley & Wallis sale that was in the Parkington sale



To all - No quotes please.  My words are all my own and this is just a summary from memory of all the articles I've ploughed through.




m

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Re: E.Varnish mercury glass with embossed seal, circa 1849
« Reply #235 on: November 11, 2017, 06:04:15 PM »
re Maes award - reply #220 and #228

the award was for the clarity of a lens:
Report by the Juries see page 532 bottom of page right hand column

click here



However, it also says 'Mr Maes has likewise exhibited some very beautiful specimens of coloured, and other ornamental glass ' .

(Mr Maes should have a double dot over the e in his name and was the Clichy person)

Offline KevinH

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Re: E.Varnish mercury glass with embossed seal, circa 1849
« Reply #236 on: November 11, 2017, 06:17:35 PM »
Re: Replies #230 and #234

Of the nine items of silvered glass in Lot 49 of the Woolley & Wallis sale, 8 Oct, 2013, only the Ring Stand was part of the Parkington Collection sale at Christie's (it was in part II, 8 April 1998, as given in the Woolley & Wallis listing in the provenance note).

That Ring Stand had a "Varnish & Co," plug. And as far as I can tell from the Christie's image, it was a "monochrome" version without any moulding or cutting.
KevinH

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Re: E.Varnish mercury glass with embossed seal, circa 1849
« Reply #237 on: November 11, 2017, 06:43:08 PM »
thank you.

Do we know if Whitefriars were using dip-moulds in 1850?
Thomas Webb's The Platts (1840-1855) had a diamond dip mold introduced in 1847 (Charles Hajdamach British Glass 1800-1914 pp 432).
They also had all the colours available including 'Chrysoprase' which I am assuming was uranium green but might not have been.



m

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Re: E.Varnish mercury glass with embossed seal, circa 1849
« Reply #238 on: November 11, 2017, 07:18:10 PM »
more about Kidd's Patent (he is W. Kidd I see from the Juries report document)

http://www.glassmessages.com/index.php/topic,62490.msg350881.html#msg350881

Offline KevinH

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Re: E.Varnish mercury glass with embossed seal, circa 1849
« Reply #239 on: November 11, 2017, 07:24:41 PM »
Dip moulds at Whitefriars (for our period of discussion)? It will need careful reading of the big Whitefriars book to get a decent answer. I will add it to the list of things I am preparing this weekend.
KevinH

 

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