Cutlery

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Object Name: 
Cutlery
Place Made: 
Accession Number: 
2010.3.120 A
Dimensions: 
Overall W: 16.6 cm, Diam (max): 1.3 cm
Location: 
On Display
Date: 
about 1750
Web Description: 
This cutlery set has faceted pistol-shaped handles in aventurine glass mounted in cylindrical silver sockets onto a steel blade and fork. The glass is both rare and indicative of stylistic influences from the East. The shiny, evenly gold-speckled surface recalls the stylistic characteristics of both Japanese maki-e lacquer and Islamic gilding, which were known in Europe through treasured imports from Asia. The blade of the knife bears the hallmark of Daniel Gurney, an English craftsman. High-quality tools made from English steel were renowned throughout Europe. They were imported to Venice, where the metal blades were joined to glass handles. By the 18th century, Venice had gained a solid reputation for the exotic merchandise that came to Europe through its harbor and its well-established mercantile connections with the eastern Mediterranean. The prosperous city had supported an inventive glassmaking industry that was principally known for its cristallo (decolorized glass that resembles rock crystal), but it also produced glass-based objects that imitated Eastern materials such as porcelain and carved hard stones, including jade and chalcedony. This cutlery is a reflection of the experimental work in which Venetian glassmakers were engaged at that time—a period in which sophisticated northern European wares threatened to overwhelm traditional markets formerly dominated by Venice.
Department: 
Provenance: 
Kunstkammer Georg Laue, Source
Stevenson, Tony, Former Collection
Primary Description: 
Cutlery. Aventurine glass, cast, tooled; silver, steel fork, assembled. Two-pronged steel fork with an copper colored, sparkly, aventurine glass handle. Handle has two ridges on each side.
The Corning Museum of Glass: Notable Acquisitions 2010 (2011) illustrated, p. 18, #8; BIB# AI86878