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Author Topic: E.Varnish mercury glass with embossed seal, circa 1849  (Read 5437 times)

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Offline flying free

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Re: E.Varnish mercury glass with embossed seal, circa 1849
« Reply #250 on: November 14, 2017, 07:39:09 PM »
Topic:  where was the glass blown?  the designs cut onto the glass

I noticed a few interesting cut design devices on some of the pieces - I will look some more links out but this is one example:

Two blue goblets sold via Woolley and Wallis - they have a sort of blob circle at the end of the curve cut. (scroll down once the page comes up on the link and then click on the vases for them to be in focus).
 I've seen this device on other pieces:
https://www.woolleyandwallis.co.uk/Lot/?sale=PG081013&lot=47&id=253607

but interestingly I came across this piece as well, similar blob cutting, but in this case the device was a series of diamond shaped curved cuts with the blob at the point of each of the diamond points.
White overlay on red glass, attributed as Bohemian with a range of makers given: 
https://i.pinimg.com/236x/84/62/83/84628350c860dcb0205ddbcfb8529f7b.jpg

It is difficult to tell because the image is slightly blurred, but I think it is possible the curious gilding on the front of this vase would make me think it is Bohemian.  I have seen that type of gilding done on Harrach and Buquoy glass.  It is done in a particular way and I think it is a Bohemian thing.

Perhaps if they were cutting the ornamental vases/goblets/weights etc in the workshop, Mellish was copying the patterns from Bohemian pieces?

m

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Re: E.Varnish mercury glass with embossed seal, circa 1849
« Reply #251 on: November 14, 2017, 09:42:06 PM »
Topic:  Where was the glass blown:  In 1845 Neuwelt (Harrach ) was producing flint glass and appears to be the only manufactory in Bohemia doing so at that time according to this:

page 267 (see right hand column, bottom chapter XV) of the Practical Mechanic and Engineer's mag vol 4 1845  (article on Glass in Bohemia by M. L. P. Debette - this article appears to have been laid out in three parts across this volume,so for the full article, please see from page 218-221, then 237-240 and 261-267. According to page 218 header it is an article translated in 1843)
[Mod: edited to correct page numbers for the three parts of the article]

click here

By flint glass did this mean lead glass?

And if it was lead glass would that feel heavier than say, more recent (1860 onwards) Bohemian silvered glass?

m

Offline KevinH

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Re: E.Varnish mercury glass with embossed seal, circa 1849
« Reply #252 on: November 21, 2017, 12:47:54 AM »
Quick note to say ... I have added a comment to Reply 188 about the vermicular pattern mentioned in that post.
KevinH

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Re: E.Varnish mercury glass with embossed seal, circa 1849
« Reply #253 on: November 28, 2017, 12:22:14 AM »
Thanks Kev.
I'm on something else at the moment so can't do glass, but will try and pull something together re the Apsley Pellatt reports when I get a chance.

Just in case it takes a while to get going again on this thread, I would like  to say that, in my opinion so far there is no evidence for any of these coloured pieces being made  at Whitefriars (Powell and Sons).

m

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Re: E.Varnish mercury glass with embossed seal, circa 1849
« Reply #254 on: December 19, 2017, 12:30:41 AM »
According to this document Willis's Current Notes for the Month - November 1853 (no XXXV), it appears to my reading,  that Whitefriars were not making ruby glass.
See page 87 where it appears to my reading of the reply, that Apsley Pellatt has made a written reply to a question on the origin of ruby glass :

https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=pmk5AQAAMAAJ&pg=RA2-PA87&dq=birmingham+gold+ruby+glass&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwj5-pGxtrzXAhUEJ8AKHaN4BKIQ6AEIJjAA#v=onepage&q=birmingham%20gold%20ruby%20glass&f=false


See also this article of April 1846 in the Civil Engineer and Architects Journal (Abstract of a paper read by Apsley Pellatt at the Royal Institution) on page 126 left hand column where it appears to my reading, to say that ruby glass made with gold was something the author seemed to think was unobtainable to 'modern makers', where it says ' ...in fact the modern glassmaker is quite at a loss for this colour'.
This appears to be because of the difficulty of making gold ruby glass when reading the text:

https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=A8NAAAAAcAAJ&pg=PA126&dq=midlands+gold+ruby+glass&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiW6bexvb7XAhXhL8AKHWX7D_o4ChDoAQg8MAU#v=onepage&q=midlands%20gold%20ruby%20glass&f=false

I would have thought that if Whitefriars were producing gold ruby glass or ruby glass, then Apsley Pellatt might have known about it when that reply was written apparently dated in 1853, if not in 1846.

The texts seems to imply that it wasn't possible to make ruby glass in glasshouses where there were large pots of clear glass being made because of the many difficulties of making ruby glass.
And also seems to say that ruby glass was produced in lumps which could then be used to 'case' other colours.
It doesn't seem entirely clear on where these 'lumps' either were being produced or whether they were gold ruby or ruby glass made with copper.
It reads to me as though there was not the ability to make gold ruby glass at a London glassmaker and possibly not in England at all.

Which I would think leaves the possibilities open that either a) the ruby goblets were made in England using a 'lump' of red glass to case them and with the casing 'lump' possibly being made in England but not of gold ruby glass (?), or b) that the goblet was made elsewhere other than in England.  Unless I have 'misread' the narrative in those two document links.  Open to correction as always.

I also wonder about the 'lumps' - is it possible that they cannot have been gold ruby glass, because the reheating/melting of them to case clear glass might have damaged the gold ruby colour because of the way it was made and reheated to bring out the colour?  Would that be true?

On the other hand there were red cased with white glass decanters shown at the Great Exhibition in 1851 under the name of Bacchus iirc ( a Midlands firm).  But I do not know if there is written evidence that they were produced at Bacchus (?) or just 'finished' at Bacchus (they are heavily cut if I recall correctly).  One would assume though that they must have been blown at Bacchus, if they were exhibited at the Great Exh under English glass? But that is an assumption.


(Kev, sorry about the links - I'll try and work out how to shorten them again).
m




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Re: E.Varnish mercury glass with embossed seal, circa 1849
« Reply #255 on: December 19, 2017, 02:01:04 AM »
In contrast to the above two links, in 1847 this article appeared in the Farmer and Mechanic starting on page 509 and apparently written by 'a correspondent'. The correspondent appears to say that they have been successful in producing a good ruby glass of crimson colour.  The correspondent also appears to talk about cased gold ruby glass being produced as scent bottles in Birmingham.  I think this might link with and refer back to possibly Meyr Oppenheim's ruby glass patent and his ruby glass 'toys' which I have talked about on two other threads.  I don't know who the 'correspondent' is, but the reference to being sold 'at Birmingham' might imply the correspondent is English perhaps.  It might be Apsley Pellatt because there is a reference to 'Jews glass' and it was a question about 'Jews glass' that he was asked to answer in the article/letter (1853) I cited in my previous post:

https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=WlI5AQAAMAAJ&pg=PA510&dq=gold+ruby+glass+birmingham+1847&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjOmruO-ZTYAhXD8qQKHXOIC7QQ6AEIMDAC#v=onepage&q=gold%20ruby%20glass%20birmingham%201847&f=false


Again I am open to correction on my reading of these articles.

As an aside to this thread, it appears to support the evidence that gold ruby glass was being produced in England for use in casing small glass items,which was my point on the gold ruby glass thread where I was saying that Meyr Oppenheim had been given a patent in the 18th century for said gold ruby glass recipe and used it for what is referred to as 'toys' i.e small glass items such as scent bottles or jewellery caskets etc (so not toys as in children's toys but rather, trinkets).


The linked article above was also printed in the Journal of the Franklyn Institute in 1847 here on page 359, where it says it was copied from the London Mechanics' Magazine and was published in the Beckman's History of Inventions:
https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=Z-Y5AQAAIAAJ&pg=PA360&dq=gold+ruby+glass+birmingham+1847&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjL9bGJgJXYAhXE8qQKHUlmCyQ4ChDoAQg6MAQ#v=onepage&q&f=false

The original article in Beckman's History of Inventions appears to have been printed in 1846 (?)
here:
https://jupiter.ai/books/55Xz/#coloured

it cites the following apparently to indicate the difficulty of making the ruby glass
'“Dr. Lewis states that he once produced a potfull of glass of beautiful colour, yet was never able to succeed a second time, though he took infinite pains, and tried a multitude of experiments with that view.” Commerce of Arts, p. 177.'

This is the Commerce of the Arts link re Dr Lewis (I think ??? though it seems to link to an Encylopaedia Britannica so I don't know when it was first published_):
https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=FWxBAAAAcAAJ&pg=PA777&lpg=PA777&dq=commerce+of+arts+Dr+Lewis+ruby+glass&source=bl&ots=NEJREBiOZL&sig=eWz-L5PKrzIlKIJ86jEfrv6yJLU&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjtvq-hgpXYAhVSpqQKHTilAA8Q6AEIJzAA#v=onepage&q=commerce%20of%20arts%20Dr%20Lewis%20ruby%20glass&f=false

Basically, I think all these links are saying that making gold ruby glass is incredibly difficult.
So where is the PR and self publicisation from Whitefriars that they made this difficult glass and not only that but that they made the green ones for the Lords Mayor and the others for the Queen and Prince Albert?  If they did, where is the publicity stating that? 

I propose that there is a question mark over the attribution of 'probably made at Whitefriars'.

m

Offline KevinH

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Re: E.Varnish mercury glass with embossed seal, circa 1849
« Reply #256 on: December 23, 2017, 03:24:24 AM »
I have been quiet here for a while, but today I found this ...

Not "Sago" but ... Thomas Seago, who was in partnership with Thomas Mellish .
Quote
.. in the business of Cut Glass Manufacturers and Silver Mounters, ... in Pimlico, under the style or firm of Mellish and Seago ..."
Dissolved 1st May, 1843, but continued by Mellish.

Page 1464 of The London Gazzette, Tuesday April 4, 1843 among notices of dissolution of partnerships.

Edited to add: Seago is a name known for other glass workers, and there was a Seago & Co in the 1870s in the Birmingham area I think. However, searching google books for "Thomas Seago glass" does not reveal anything positive for a possible connection to Thomson / Mellish after 1843.
KevinH

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Re: E.Varnish mercury glass with embossed seal, circa 1849
« Reply #257 on: December 23, 2017, 10:47:50 AM »
From looking at the later Thomas Seago evidence (Birmingham glass cutters, registered designs), is it possible that Seago was a finisher rather than a glass blower/ manufacturer?
Mellish might have known something about glass blowing but obviously didn't do it and  Seago may have been a cutter/mounter type thing?  just wondering.

i.e. he may have carried on having glass in stock which he sold to Thompson to use (after Mellish went to prison and they were trying to reduce costs)?
So it might be possible that Seago is the Sago that Thompson referred to in the court case.  However I still can't see the link to the double walled blown glass items. 

And thank you Kev.  That is an interesting find as the name Seago hadn't come up on any of my searches and I think that is a good possibility as an explanation for the Sago in the court case.

m


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Re: E.Varnish mercury glass with embossed seal, circa 1849
« Reply #258 on: January 04, 2018, 12:31:45 AM »
1) Just to say that I don't now think the 'correspondent' who wrote about making ruby glass was Apsley Pellatt.  I meant to correct my comment earlier but forgot.

2) It might be possible that the question was posed to Apsley Pellatt asking what was meant by 'Jews glass' in a later correspondence , because the questioner had read the article I linked to perhaps and wondered what was meant by the phrase?
The question and Apsley Pellatt's answer is here for refreshing memory:
https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=pmk5AQAAMAAJ&pg=RA2-PA87&dq=birmingham+gold+ruby+glass&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwj5-pGxtrzXAhUEJ8AKHaN4BKIQ6AEIJjAA#v=onepage&q=birmingham%20gold%20ruby%20glass&f=false

Apsley Pellatt's answer is not straight forward.  It doesn't read to me that he is absolutely certain of his facts on that question, nor does it read that he knew how to make gold ruby glass.

3) There is an interesting history of Whitefriars here on this link.
There is no information on whether they were producing red or gold-ruby glass in 1850:
http://www.whitefriarsorg.co.uk/history-of-whitefriars.php

4) As another aside, I think I've read somewhere that the red in stained glass windows in the UK was found to be copper ruby in all cases, not gold-ruby.  That is not 'fact'.  I need to remember where I read it (it was a recent piece of research) and attach a link.

m


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Re: E.Varnish mercury glass with embossed seal, circa 1849
« Reply #259 on: June 29, 2018, 09:25:15 PM »
I'm still looking for evidence of the early i.e.1840s and 1850s Powell/Whitefriars examples or catalogues. Just curious as to the shapes.

There is one catalogue from the 1860s on this link:
http://www.whitefriarsorg.co.uk/whitefriars-cat-1860.php

obviously 10 years is a long time in glassmaking but there is nothing in that catalogue that 'reminds' me of the E Varnish glass articles.
Also came across a comment in this article (snippet info only):
https://www.jstor.org/stable/41809196?seq=1#page_scan_tab_contents

'The table glass designs of Philip Webb and T.G. Jackson for James Powell & Sons,Whitefriars Glassworks', Judy Ruedo and Howard Coutts:
page 24, bottom of right hand column
'Surviving Whitefriars trade catalogues for the 1860s indicate that Powell's normal range comprised the standard cut and engraved glasses similar to those produced by other high-class glasshouses such as Apsley Pellatt, whose' (ends at that point)


 

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