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Drinking glass

Drinking glass

  • Place of origin:

    England (made)

  • Date:

    1685-1690 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:

    Lead glass, mould-blown, with pincered ribbing and 'propellor' stem

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    British Galleries, Room 56, The Djanogly Gallery, case 13

Object Type
Wine glasses such as this must have been made in large numbers at the end of the 17th century, though very few survive. Clear 'flint' drinking glasses (one of the basic ingredients being calcined and powdered flint) were available in two grades, according to their weight. The thin bowl and light construction of this glass show that it is an example of 'single flint' rather than the thicker and more expensive 'double flint' glass.

It was the glassmaker George Ravenscroft (1632-1681) who developed English lead or flint glass. By 1690, however, the influence of the Italian glassmakers he had employed some 15 years earlier was fading. But just before the truly English heavy baluster stem was invented, some foreign influence was still sometimes to be found. Of the small number of specialist tools needed to work hot glass, the pincers (tongs or pucellas introduced by Italian glassmakers) were one of the most useful. On this piece, the pincering of the mould-blown ribbing and the stem are typical Venetian techniques. Here they were applied to hot molten lead glass that could easily be compressed, but was unwilling to be pulled and teased into the fantastic shapes beloved of Italian glassmakers.

Physical description

Foot: folded; Knop: lobed; Bowl: funnel

Place of Origin

England (made)


1685-1690 (made)



Materials and Techniques

Lead glass, mould-blown, with pincered ribbing and 'propellor' stem


Height: 14.2 cm, Diameter: 7.4 cm, Diameter: 7.1 cm top

Object history note

Made in England

Descriptive line

Drinking glass, England, , 1685-1690, C.144-1928 .

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

R J Charleston, English Glass (1984), pl.26b

Labels and date

British Galleries:

Consumption of alcohol was a driving force behind developments in glass-making. George Ravenscroft (1632-1681) produced mainly beer and wine glasses, of which few have survived. The personalised 'black' bottle for storing wine in good condition was a product of the prosperous Restoration period, while the decanter-jug showed the beauty of the wine on the table. [27/03/2003]


British Galleries; Glass; Drinking


Ceramics Collection

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