Bowl And Stand (Ireland), ca. 1825–30
The description of cut glass as being ‘crystal’ is a misnomer. Lead glass, lacking a crystalline structure, is a distinctly different material from true quartz crystal. Since the fifteenth century, glassmakers have aspired to produce glass as brilliant and clear as pure crystal.
Flint or lead glass has been made in the British Isles since the seventeenth century, about the time when coal was first used for fuel instead of wood. Before this time, glass would have been made with a soda-lime mixture. Flint glass is transparent, and dazzlingly refracts light, a property enhanced through the faceted cutting of the surface. Before steam power was used for glass cutting, it took two men to do the work by hand. One sat at the table and held the piece of blown glass to the edge of the rapidly revolving cutting wheel, turned by the other.
This bowl was decorated with a strawberry diamond pattern and is crowned with a large scalloped edge that becomes luminous when filled with light.
This object was
Walter Phelps Warren.
It is credited
Bequest of Walter Phelps Warren.
Its dimensions are
H x W: 22 x 27.5 cm (8 11/16 x 10 13/16in.)
Cite this object as
Bowl And Stand (Ireland), ca. 1825–30; glass; H x W: 22 x 27.5 cm (8 11/16 x 10 13/16in.); Bequest of Walter Phelps Warren; 1986-61-165-a,b