All About Glass

All About Glass

This is your resource for exploring various topics in glass: delve deeper  with this collection of articles, multimedia, and virtual books all about glass. Content is frequently added to the area, so check back for new items. If you have a topic you'd like to see covered, send us your suggestion. If you have a specific question, Ask a Librarian at our Rakow Research Library.

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Prince Rupert’s drop
Glass Dictionary Term

A solid, hollow glass object, about two inches long, with a bulbous end and a narrow, curving “tail.” It is made by dropping a blob of hot glass into cold water and leaving it there until it has cooled. The rounded end resists a blow, but because of internal stress due to the absence of annealing,

Annagelb
Glass Dictionary Term

(German) Two types of glass colored by adding uranium oxide to the batch. Annagelb is yellow, and Annagrün is green. They were developed by Josef Riedel (1816-1894), who named them for his wife, Anna, and they were made from 1834. Annagrün annagelbs annagruns Uranium glass

Alabastron
Glass Dictionary Term

(from Greek), alabastrum (from Latin) A small bottle or flask for perfume or toilet oil, usually with a flattened rim, a narrow neck, a cylindrical body, and two small handles. Alabastrum Alabastron

Air trap
Glass Dictionary Term

An air-filled void, which may be of almost any shape. Air traps in stems are frequently tearshaped or elongated and spirally twisted. air traps Air lock Diamond air trap Pegging Twist Goblet

Blowing
Glass Dictionary Term

The technique of forming an object by inflating a gather or gob of molten glass on the end of a blowpipe. Traditionally and in modern furnace working, the gaffer blows through the tube, slightly inflating the gob, which is then manipulated into the required form by swinging it, rolling it on a

Cracking off
Glass Dictionary Term

The process of detaching the unwanted portion of the parison from the blowpipe and the intended rim. cracks off cracked off

Overblow
Glass Dictionary Term

A by-product of mold blowing, this is the portion of the parison that remains outside the mold. The overblow, or moil, is usually removed by cracking off. over-blow overblows over-blows Moil

Moil
Glass Dictionary Term

The unwanted top of a blown object. When the last stage in the forming process is the removal of the object from the blowpipe, the result is a narrow opening that almost certainly is not what the glassblower desires. After annealing, therefore, the top of the object is removed, usually by cracking

Pincers
Glass Dictionary Term

A glassworker’s tool used for decorating objects by pinching the glass while it is hot. pincer

Snuff bottle
Glass Dictionary Term

A small bottle (in China) or box (in Europe) for powdered tobacco, or snuff. The habit of inhaling snuff, which spread to Europe from the Americas in the 17th century, was introduced to China in the 18th century. snuff bottles snuff-bottle snuff-bottles snuffbox snuffboxes snuff box snuff boxes

Vetro di trina
Glass Dictionary Term

(Italian, “lace glass”) A term loosely applied to various types of vetro a reticello. Vetro a reticello Plate

Soft glass
Glass Dictionary Term

A generic name for glass (e.g., soda-lime glass) with a relatively high coefficient of expansion. The term hard glass (e.g., borosilicate glass) refers to glass with a relatively low coefficient of expansion. soft glasses soft-glass soft-glasses

Spechter
Glass Dictionary Term

(German) A drinking glass made in the Spessart region of Germany in the 16th century. Although the term is frequently applied to a tall glass resembling a Stangenglas, there is no proof that the usage is correct. spechters speckter speckters

Spill holder
Glass Dictionary Term

A tall, narrow vessel for spills. Spills are thin strips of wood, or folded or twisted pieces of paper, used for lighting candles, pipes, etc. spill holders spill-holder Taperstick

Spoon holder
Glass Dictionary Term

A tall, narrow container for spoons. Spoon holders were used at the table from the mid-19th century to World War I. spoon holders spoon-holder Spoon Holder in "Horn of Plenty" or "Comet" Pattern

Sport cup
Glass Dictionary Term

A first-century A.D. Roman mold-blown drinking vessel decorated with fighting gladiators or a chariot race. sport cups sport-cup sport-cups sports cup sports cups Sports Cup Depicting Gladiators

Sprinkler
Glass Dictionary Term

A vessel with a narrow neck, sometimes with a diaphragm at the bottom, that causes the contents to emerge drop by drop. sprinklers Sprinkler

Stained glass
Glass Dictionary Term

The generic name for decorative windows made of pieces of colored glass fitted into cames and set in iron frames. Strictly speaking, the term is inaccurate because, in addition to glass colored by staining, glaziers used, and continue to use, glass colored throughout by metallic oxide, glass

Stangenglas
Glass Dictionary Term

(German, “pole glass”) A tall, narrow cylindrical drinking vessel (hence the name “pole glass”), usually with a pedestal foot. stangenglases stangenglass Tall Beaker (Stangenglas)

Stem
Glass Dictionary Term

The narrow part of a goblet or tazza that separates the bowl and the foot. stems Goblet

Stemware
Glass Dictionary Term

The collective name for drinking vessels and serving dishes with a stem supporting the bowl. stemwares stem-ware stem ware stem-wares stem wares 2 Wineglasses

Stippling
Glass Dictionary Term

(1) The technique of tapping the surface of a glass object with a pointed tool, often with a diamond or tungsten-carbide tip. Each tap produces a mark, and the decoration is composed of many hundreds or thousands of marks. (2) On lacy-pattern glass, the stippling is part of the decoration of the

Stirrup cup
Glass Dictionary Term

(1) A cup of wine or some other drink handed to a person when on horseback and about to set out on a journey; hence (2) a drinking vessel for consuming such drinks. stirrup cups stirrup-cup stirrup-cups Stirrup Glass

Stone
Glass Dictionary Term

Any crystalline inclusion present in glass. Stones consist of unmelted particles of batch, fragments of refractory material from the pot, or devitrification crystals. Stones of the first two varieties are generally irregular but rounded; those of the third variety are angular and well formed.

Strain cracks
Glass Dictionary Term

Fissures in the body of a vessel caused by internal strain resulting from inadequate annealing and/or accidental thermal shock. strain crack strain cracking

Strigil
Glass Dictionary Term

(from Latin strigilis, “scraper”) A scraper used by the ancient Romans to remove impurities from the skin after bathing. Although strigils were usually made of metal, a few glass examples are known to exist. strigils Strigil

Striking
Glass Dictionary Term

The process of reheating glass after it has cooled, in order to develop color or an opacifying agent that appears only within a limited range of temperatures. strike Burmese Vase with “Lace Embroidery, Queen’s Pattern”

Studio glass
Glass Dictionary Term

A term popularized in the 1960s for unique or limited-edition objects designed and made in a studio rather than a factory, often, but not necessarily, by the same person. studio glasses Vase

Studio Glass movement
Glass Dictionary Term

A movement that began in the United States in the 1960s and has spread all over the world. It is characterized by the proliferation of glass artists who are not affiliated with factories, but work with hot glass in their own studios. The emergence of independent glass artists was made possible by

Sweetmeat
Glass Dictionary Term

A vessel for serving sweetmeats, sweet food such as preserved or candied fruit and sugared cakes or nuts. sweetmeats sweet meat sweet meats Sweetmeat Glass

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