Notebook, 1993-


GLASS - Glossary - A List of Museums and Galleries

American - Bohemian - Chinese - English - French - Irish - Venetian

Glass Glossary - A-Co - Co-Fl - Fl-K - L-Ro - Ro-T - U-Z

Rousseau, Eugène. The greatest French glass artist of the 19th c. He began as a dealer in decorative ceramics and appears to have devoted himself to glass from c. 1875. His ideas were realized by Appert Frères, one of the most progressive and well-equipped factories in Paris at the time.

Rousseau's glasses are usually made of a heavy transparent metal, tinted into a light champagne colour. Decoration is achieved through cutting, engraving, or enamel painting, and cased and flushed glass, with cut-away patterns, can also be found. The shapes are borrowed from historical sources, German or Italian Renaissance pottery or French Baroque ornament. The Japanese fashion seems to have made a great impression on Rousseau. He reproduced Japanese ornaments and imitated the ceramic technique of running glazes, and seems even to have absorbed the subtler sides of the Japanese message, the preference for simple outlines, and the dislike of rigid symmetry and hard precision. His most famous creation is massive, sometimes crackled glass with streaks of colours, preferably purples and reds, embedded between transparent casings. The effect is obtained by the use of metal oxides. The grandeur of the execution , the boldness of the colour, and the originality and taste in the decor place Rousseau's glass in a class apart among contemporary art glass.

His works were sold in his shop at 74 boulevard Haussmann. A few are signed on the base with his name and address. At the Paris Exhibitions in 1878 [p. 284] and 1884 Rousseau's glass was highly admired, and his techniques were imitated, more or less successfully, in France and in other countries. In 1885 he handed over his establishment to E. Leveillé [q.v.], who carried on his work. Rummer, 1760-1850. Short-stemmed drinking glass with capacious thinly blown ovoid bowl and small foot. From 1790 a series of thicker section and on heavy feet for holding hot toddy.

St. Louis, Cristalleries de. Together with Baccarat the greatest large-scale producer of fine glass in France all through the period. Founded in 1767 as Verrerie Royale de St. Louis. In 1781 the first French production of lead crystal of the English type was started there, and from 1782 it was carried on on a commercial basis. The archives of the factory were to a large extent destroyed during World War II, and its history until 1834 is obscure. From 1839 the factory is known to have made excellent coloured glass, the earliest dated examples being from 1844. The colour products of the middle of the century are distinguished by the brightness of their colour and the simplicity and grace of the shapes. Fresh and unpompous and astoundingly modern in appearance, they are among the finest examples of glass made anywhere at the time.

All through the nineteenth century Cristalleries de St. Louis were the main producer of fine table glass in France.

Salts with feet. Small vessel with double ogee bowls, flattened knops, and applied circular feet usually slightly sloping and sometimes scalloped. 1790's to 1850's in English flint glass.

Scalloped foot. See Foot [U.S.].

Scalloping. A rim outline formed by a series of semicircles with edges ground sharply until about 1750. Castellated rims date from about 1770.

Scent Bottles. In England scent bottles made of coloured and of opaque white glass are not uncommon. Some of the latter can be attributed to Bristol manufactories because of their creamy colour and their complete opacity, and because the painting on them is related to that on more important specimens of white glass. Of coloured glass scent bottles, it is not possible to say more than that they were probably made at Bristol. Many of the surviving examples resemble closely in their decoration the work to be seen on watch cases and other articles known to have been made in London. As it is known that glass 'smelling bottles' were being made there as early as 1752, perhaps a London origin was common to them all. Scent bottles continued to be made in the prevailing types of glass until the 1830s, when, for half a century, they were made in huge numbers and every conceivable shape and colour.

Sealed glasses. Early English flint-glass tableware to which were applied small glass discs impressed with the maker's mark: raven's head, George Ravenscroft, September 1675-1681; the king's arms, Henry Holden, glass maker to the King from 1683; Lion and coronet, Duke of Buckingham.

Seals. The circular glass seals were almost certainly impressed with an original intaglio made of brass. This was made either by a professional engraver working on his own behalf or, in the case of a glassworks specializing in sealed bottles, by one on the staff of the manufactory. No name of any craftsman connected with this particular branch of the rat of die sinking has been recorded, and the makers of these seals, as most of the makers of more elaborate desk seals, have remained anonymous.

Glass bottle seals fall into three categories, whether they bear dates or not, and may be conveniently classified as: armorial, name or initial, and 'others', the last including merchant's marks, Masonic signs, and the names of houses.

Seeds. Minute air bubbles in the metal, indication that the glasshouse could not raise furnace temperature high enough to eliminate all air bubbles trapped among the raw materials.

Set-in and set-over covers. See Covers.

Shaft. Usually applied to section between socket or font and base of candlestick or lamp; in blown glass, applied forms similar to stems; in early pressed glass, in two sections - one with base and one with socket, joined by a merese; in later pressed glass, in one with socket and base.

Shakers. Term usually preceded by salt or pepper; casters.

Sheared lip. Plain; see Rims [4].

Skânska Glasbruket, 1691-1762. Swedish glass manufactory situated in Northern Scania. Skânska Glasbruket was founded by a certain Göran Adlersten, an enterprising civil servant of the locality. The factory began by making purely utilitarian glass, but in 1715 production of decorative glass was taken up. It lasted until 1762, when the works were destroyed by fire.

South Jersey tradition. Tradition of glass blowing and decorating presumed to have had its American beginnings in Wistar's and other South Jersey houses; see South Jersey type.

South Jersey types. Generic term for individual pieces blown from bottle and window glass in natural colours, occasionally artificial, fashioned by free blowing and manipulation, plain and decorated by glass applied to itself and tooled, very rarely [p. 285] pattern-moulded; first associated with the Wistar's 18th-c. glassworks, southern Jersey, U.S.A.; then later houses in the area; now known to have been blown in most Eastern bottle- and window-glass houses into the late nineteenth century; called folk art in American glass, largely because of individual rendering and centuries-old traditional techniques in blowing and decorating include the lily pad, prunts, quilling, swagging, pricots, bird finials, threading, and crimping.

Spangled glass. Molten glass rolled over flakes of mica or metal particles which fused when heated. Made by Hobbs, Brockunier & Company, Wheeling, West Virginia, 1883; called 'Vasa Murrhina'; blue flecked with silver and gold and other combinations are known. Made also in England and Bohemia.

Stems. Dates apply to English Glass.
Air-twist,1740-65. [1] Single-twist air spirals in a drawn stem formed by the extension of air bubbles; multiple spirals throughout the period, from 1745 two or four corkscrews; not until about 1750 were threads of uniform thickness and spaced regularly: [b] single-twist in a three-piece glass: 1740-65 the shank cut from long lengths made by extension of air bubbles; from 1750 spirals made by a mould process, filaments finely drawn and coiled with precision in some thirty variations; [c] compound-twist in three-piece glass: 1760-5 in a dozen variations.

Baluster, 1685-1760. Stem consisting of a pure baluster form which might be inverted: also a baluster associated with various knopped motifs; [a] 1685-1725: heavy inverted baluster with solid bowl base and interior bowl depth almost invariably less than stem length; [b] 1700-25: simple knop such as angular, annulated, cushioned, or drop knop, with or without a baluster; from 1710 acorn, cylinder, of mushroom knops; from 1715 true baluster alone or with various knops and a pair of balusters placed head to head between a pair of knops; [c] 1725-65: light balusters, true or inverted, supporting bowls with thin bases; illustrated on trade cards of the 1760s. Between 1725 and 1740 the stem and collar baluster in which a merese separated bowl from stem.

Colour twist, 1755-75. Spirals of glass, opaque or transparent, singly or in combination: commonly in blue, green, or ruby, less frequently in red, yellow, sapphire, black, and greyish blue.

Composite. Built up of two or more parts welded together; found on U.S. drinking vessels, compotes, candlesticks, occasionally on covered sweetmeats dishes, sugar bowls, pitchers.

Compound-twist, 1760-1800. A pair of air or enamel spiral formations, one within the other: a central spiral or [in enamel] a closely knotted central cable with another formation spiraling around it. In straight stems only.

Drawn, from 1682. A plain knopped or baluster stem drawn directly from a gathering of metal at the base of the bowl; [a] to 1725 in large, heavy forms; [b] 1720-45 with waisted thick-based bowl; [c] from 1735 the standard pattern was a straw shank drawn from a trumpet-shaped bowl; by 1770 had degenerated into a thin-stemmed tavern glass.

Facet-cut, c. 1748-1800. Almost invariably drawn stems; [a] elongated diamond facets, two or three times longer than width with angles of 120 degrees and 60 degrees: found throughout the period; [b] 1755-80, elongated hexagonal facets; [c] 1760-80, shouldered and centrally knopped stems; [d] 1760-75, scale facets; [e] 1770-1800, facets cut deeper than formerly; [f] 1790-1800, stems shorter than formerly.

Hollow, early 1760s to late 1780s. Stem in the form of a hollow cylinder, sometimes, though rarely, knopped.

Incised, 1678-1780. Alternating ridges and grooves spiralling around the stem surface; [a] 1678-1720, incised balusters; [b] 1740-60, closely spaced medium to coarse spirals with almost imperceptible reduction of stem diameter at centre; [c] 1660-1780, finer, more uniform, incisions on stem of unvarying diameter.

Knoppe, 1700-55. Stem composed of four to six knops, none sufficiently large to dominate its fellows; [a] to 1740 heavy knops, well-modelled until 1735; [b] from 1740 light knops. [p. 287]

Mercury-twist, 1745-65. Air twists of exceptionally large diameter spiralling down the center of a stem in close coils, or a pair of corkscrew threads.

Mixed-twist, 1750-70. A combination of air twist and opaque-white twist in a single stem.

Moulded pedestal, 1705-85. Known also as Silesian and shouldered stem; on good-quality ware until about 1730; [a] 1705-20, four-sided moulded stem, never collared at the base; by 1710 the shoulders were being shaped in the form of four arches; [b] 1720-40, sides moulded with deep, vertical reds; [c] 1727-35, six-sided pedestal; [d] 1730-50, eight-sided pedestal lacking precision and definition; [e] 1750-80, thin, coarse-ribbed versions of the earlier types: [f] 1765-85, well-designed pedestal stem with four or six sides enriched with cutting.

Opaque-twist, mid-1740s to end of eighteenth century. Spirals of dense-textured white enamel, varying from fine hairs to bread solid tapes; single or compound in more than a hundred variations; [a] straight stem with single twist; [b] with shoulder or central knop and single twist, usually multiple spiral; [c] straight stem with compound twist - the most common type - from 1760; [d] with knops in various positions, shoulder, central, base, or any two or all three, with compound twist, from 1760.

Rib-twist. See Incised.

Silesian. See Moulded Pedestal.

Single-twist, late 1740s to early 1800s. One formation of air, enamel, or coloured threads spiraling around a clear glass centre, or a pair of reciprocal spirals.

Straight, plain, 1725 to nineteenth century. On three-piece glasses; after 1748 tended to be thinner than formerly.

Stuck shank. A stem made from a separate gather of metal welded to the base of the bowl.

Vertical flute cutting, mid-1780s-1800. [a] to 1790, stem fluted above and below a central diamond-cut knop; [b] 1790-1800, long, straight flutes from foot to bowl, either notched on alternate angles, horizontally grooved, or sliced.

Wormed. See Air-twist.

Wrythen. See Incised.

Step. A flattened glass button connecting the Stem of a rummer with its foot.

Stiegel tradition. Tradition of glass blowing and decorating by use of pattern moulds, presumed to have had its American beginnings in Stiegel's second Manheim glassworks [1769-74]. See Stiegel type [3]

Stiegel type. Term applied to main types of ware produced in Stiegel's Manheim, Pennsylvania, glass-houses, c. 1765-74. [1] Engraved [shallow copper wheel] and [2] enamelled glass like common Continental commercial wares of mid-18th-early 19th century, today called peasant glass in Europe. [3] Pattern-moulded glass, usually flint glass, like the British ware produced in the early 19th c.; coloured [mainly blues, greens, and amethysts] and colourless. See also Diamond daisy and Daisy-in-hexagon.

Stiegel-type salt. See Salts with feet.

Stippling. Minute raised dots forming the background in lacy glass, glitter-producing device never used in glass making until made possible by mechanical pressing; an earmark of lacy glass [q.v.]

Stones. Red and black specks within the fabric of early flint glass, the result of imperfect fusion between oxide of lead and silica.

Strap handle. See Handles.

Straw shank. See Stems, drawn.

Striae. Apparent undulating markings within the metal, perfectly vitrified and transparent, show the metal to be of uneven composition because insufficiently molten before working.

String course or string rim. The raised band near the top of the neck of a bottle, which provided a grip under which the string for securing a cork or other cover might be fastened. In seventeenth-century bottles this took the form of a single band of a glass about a quarter of an inch below the orifice, and it remains a feature of subsequent bottles.

Strûmbergshyttan. Modern Swedish art-glass manufactory situated in SmÅland.

Stuck shank. See Stems.

Sugar basins. Have a boldly concave outline and a flat base, and are for the most part boldly cut with diamond patterns or moulded with thick gadroons.

Sulphides. Known contemporaneously as crystallo ceramie and by some collectors as sulphides or glass-encrusted cameos. The process was patented [No. 4424, 1819] by Apsley Pellatt, London. A pressed bas relief of unglazed white stoneware was embedded in [ p. 287] flawless flint glass, assuming the glowing loveliness of silver. Many of these reliefs were embedded in paperweights, but others enriched tableware and jewelry. Most commonly the sulphide was a profile portrait of a contemporary celebrity: profile portraits were also made to the commission of sitters now unknown.

Earlier crude examples, greyish in tint, had been made in Bohemia and France: later the French glass-houses at Baccarat, St. Louis, and Clichy copied Pellatt's invention with success.

Sunken panel. See Panelling.

Superimposed decoration. Any decoration of device fashioned by tooling layer of glass formed from a pearl. See Lily pad.

Swagging. Superimposed layer tooled into wavy formation, usually created by a picot.

Swirl. Familiar name for a paperweight composed of coloured canes radiating spirally from the top.

Swirled ribbing. Pattern-moulded design formed by twisting vertical ribs impressed in a gather inserted in ribbed or fluted dip mould; English, wrythen ornamentation.

Swords, sceptres, crowns, and hats. In England examples of these articles made from glass are occasionally seen. Their original purpose is made clear by the following paragraph from the Daily Post, 14 November 1738: 'Bristol, Nov. 11. - Yesterday the Prince and Princess of Wales paid their promised visit to this City . . . . The Companies of the City made a magnificent appearance in their formalities, marching two by two preceding the Corporation and the Royal Guests. The Company of Glassmen went first dressed in white Holland shorts on horse-back, some with swords, others with crowns and sceptres in their hands, made of glass.' It should be pointed out, however, that few [if any] of the surviving example of these Friggers are of such an early date as 1738, as these items continued to be made and used for a long time afterwards.

Glass hats were made for similar purposes to the above; it is said that they were very uncomfortable to wear.

Table centres. These usually consisted of numerous glass figures, and were made in the eighteenth c. An unusually large, and very fine example, in the museum at Murano, Italy, is in the form of a model garden with balustrades, urns, hedges, and a central fountain, all made of glass. Birmingham glassmen during the mid-nineteenth century made large numbers of lavishly designed table centres, particularly George Bacchus & Sons.

Tale glass. A second-quality metal taken from the top of the pot, and sold more cheaply than the lower, finer metal.

Tears. Bubbles of air enclosed within the metal for decorative purposes: first appeared in stems; from 1715 to about 1760 clusters or spherical or comma-shaped tears appeared in bowl base, knop, and finial.

Thread circuit. A tin trail of applied glass encircling a bowl rim or decorating the neck of a vessel.

Three-piece glasses. Bowl, stem, and foot made separately and welded together.

Tiffany glass. A type of U.S. art glass; made by Louis Comfort Tiffany [1848-1933] in New York in the late 1890s; many pieces marked Favrile. Process fused various colours by heat, then exposed the pieces to fumes of vaporized metals; pieces were handblown in fanciful forms; spinning and twisting during blowing process produced wavy lines suggestive of leaves, waves, or peacock feathers; bluish green and gold, light mother-of-pearl, red, and other more unusual colours; is characteristically iridescent with a satiny finish in imitation of ancient glass.

Tint. A residual colour tinge inherent in the ingredients from which the metal is composed.

Toasting glass. A flute of fine metal with tall stem drawn to a diameter of one-eighth to one-quarter of an inch.

Toastmaster's glass. A thick bowl designed to magnify its capacity, on a tall stem. Short, deceptive glasses, known as sham drams, were used by tavern keepers, 1775-1850.

Tobacco pipes. Were made at all the glass centres in England, at first with small bowls and solid stems of transparent colour often enriched with spiralling threads of coloured or opaque white enamel. They lack the affluent air of the later pipes blown from high-quality glass. From the mid-1840s their bowls followed the designs of the new pipe bowls of porcelain with long, slender mouthpieces. Other may be found imitating early Victorian briar pipes. Measurements range from 19 to 25 inches [25. 4-63.5 cm] overall with occasional giants more than a yard [91.4 cm] long. They were in considerable demand as wall decorations for small homes. The most common form has a large bowl with a flared and welted rim, the mouthpiece with its curved stem widening as it approaches the bowl, but reduced to a very narrow tube at the bowl junction. These are to be found in all combinations of colour, latticinio work in milk white and pink being common. Red glass was popular and is found in qualities varying from brilliant unflawed ruby with opaque horizontal lines on bowl and bobbin stem to poor-quality colour with striations and other flaws in the glass.

Toddy lifter. A pipette with bulbous or decanter-shaped body for lifting hot toddy from bowl to drinking glass, c. 1800-40.

Tortoiseshell Pale brownish-amber glass with [p. 288] darker splotches; another glass made in imitation of other ware which was popular in the late nineteenth century; attributed to the Sandwich Glass Company, U.S.A.

Trailed ornament. Leopard threads of glass applied to the surface of a bowl or foot.

Trailing, pinched. Applied bands of glass pinched into wavy formation.

Tumblers Were exported from Murano in fine glass and made in most European countries in poor quality throughout the 17th c. By the end of the century they were made in flint glass with vertical sides and a slightly rounded base with a medium kick. From about 1710 they might be lightly touched with shallow-cut diamond facets or large diamonds and triangles. Pint, half-pint, and quarter-pint tumblers were advertised.

Not until the early 1740s were glass tumblers designed with outward sloping sides and a height about double the base diameter. The heavy-based waisted tumbler had come into use. From the late 1750s they were made without a kick, and all-over shallow cutting became slightly deeper and a wider variety of motifs used. Finger fluting encircling the lower half of tumblers dates from the same period, at first flat and broad, little more than the surface of the glass being removed. As the century progressed flutes were cut deeper and in varying widths, and between 1790 and 1820 the crests might be notched. Deep relief cutting is found on heavy tumblers from 1790, some fifty varieties and combinations being found after 1805.

Twisted ribbing. Swirled ribs or flutes; on solid canes, used as stems, sometimes handles; English, incised or reeded, see Stems.

Two-piece glasses. Stem drawn in a piece from the bowl and a foot added.


NOTE: References to MARKS may refer to the illustrations of these marks which are not included in this document.
NOTE: * represents a configuration not available on the computer

[L. G. G. Ramsey, F.S.A., ed. The Complete Color Encyclopedia of Antiques. Preface by Bevis Hillier, Editor of The Connoisseur. Compiled by The Connoisseur, London. New York: Hawthorn Books, Inc. 1962. Revised and Expanded Edition.]



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