Ancient Glass Blog of The Allaire Collection


Posted in Uncategorized by Allaire Collection of Glass on December 31, 2018


The Middle Ages in European history is between the decline of the Roman Empire in the 5th century and the dawn of the Renaissance in the 15th century. The Migration period or early Middle Ages is 5th to 8th C.  This post will concentrate on glass made up the 6th C.  Fortunately, the Roman glass maker had local pupils who learned the trade and took care of the continuity in making glass.  Without their Roman over lords these glass makers soon developed their own style and forms. The Franks-Merovingian vessels of the early Migration period will illustrate the change in styling from the decorative man designs. The forms and colors are cruder, less ornamental with simpler shapes.  Also, in the 5th to 6th century in Europe you find glass which is called late is Roman. These glasses have a more Roman styling, decoration and design but at the same time they are not the same classic Roman style found in the 1st to 4th C.

Glass of The Early Migration Period 5th To 6th Century

Nico F. Bijnsdorp collection Merovingian cone beaker Late 5th – early 6th century

Merovingian bag beaker in Rijksmuseum voor Oudheden Leiden 5th to 7th century





Posted in Uncategorized by Allaire Collection of Glass on December 29, 2018

Gallo-Roman Beaker

115E Gallo-Roman Glass Beaker

H: 11.5 cm
D: 4th –Early 5th Century AD

Gallo-Roman beaker 115E was made in the beginning of the Migration Period in the Western Provinces. The elegantly formed beaker is made of light olive green glass with the conical bottom standing on a flat base ring.  Intact.  Ex: Martin Wunsch collection, NYC.

Ref: David Whitehouse, Roman Glass in the Corning Museum of Glass, Volume 1, #177 P.115, Sotheby’s Nov 20 1987 Lot 133, #81, Memoires de Verre, # 74 P. 40, Verreries Antiques der Musee de Picardie # 319 P. 5

Below is a glass which shows a design change from late Roman to Merovingian. The glass is in The Musee d Archeologie Nationale in St Germain. The museum is a major French archeology museum, covering among other areas Roman and the Merovingian period.


Posted in Uncategorized by Allaire Collection of Glass on December 27, 2018


In 1901 Henry Clay Fry began the H.C. Fry Glass Co. at Rochester, PA.  This company made complete dinner sets, tea sets and a large variety of heat-resistant oven glassware from 1916 to 1930 under a license from the Corning Glass Works. In the 1920’s they started to manufacture cut glass.   They are also known for their opalescent “Art Glass” called Foval.  The factory closed in 1934.  The following are examples of their heat-resistant dinner sets and tea sets from the Allaire Collection and other sources.

Allaire Collection of Fry Glass



Below are additional examples from other collections.


Blue handle tea set not complete, photo from Cottone Auctions

Green handle tea set not complete , photo from Jeffrey S. Evans @ Associates web page

Opalescent “Art Glass” Foval not complete, photo from Jeffrey S. Evans @ Associates web page

Opalescent tea set not complete, photo from Case Antiques


A good book on this type of glass is The Collector’s Encyclopedia of Fry Glassware (Cut Glass, Oven Ware, Art Glass and Kitchen Ware)

by H.C. Fry Glass Society

The Collector’s Encyclopedia of Fry Glassware





Posted in Uncategorized by Allaire Collection of Glass on December 25, 2018

Venetian Filigrana Glass Vase

107E Venetian Filigrana Vase

107E Venetian Filigrana Vase of the Allaire Collection of Glass



 The pear-shaped body of this Venetian vase is fashioned with two styles of filigrana retortoli canes. The straight neck may have had a lid.  The vessel is decorated with clear glass wing handles, single center trail and ring foot also of clear glass.  A similar object is in the collection in the Rosenborg Castle in Copenhagen.

H: 12.7

Date: 1700 Venice

Published: A Collection of Filigrana Glass, Kitty Lameris, 2012 #20

Ref: Coburg #452, HansCohn Collection #201, Golden Age of Venetian Glass #127

Photo: Courtesy of Frides Lameris Art and Antique, Amsterdam

Tagged with: ,


Posted in Uncategorized by Allaire Collection of Glass on December 23, 2018

97E Allaire Collection of Glass H: 3  5/8th  inches   Circa: 1820

This wineglass is blown from brilliant light green lead glass.  It has a circular bowl with heavy tapering cylindrical stem drawn from same gather to a broad circular foot with an in-folded rim.  The wine could be American or English.

Ref: McKearin, 200 Hundred Years of American Blown Glass p 242, plate 61 5&7


Corning Museum of Glass List the wine as American or English 19th century


Metropolitan art Museum list the wineglass as from Jersey Glass Co. in Jersey City 1824-1840


Posted in Uncategorized by Allaire Collection of Glass on December 21, 2018


Date: 2nd half of 1st century A.D. Dimensions: H. 4 1/8in. (10.5cm) Accession Number: 81.10.226


Description:  Slightly lopsided, everted, thick, knocked-off rim; narrow, cylindrical neck; body modeled in the shape of a head in the round; base ring with rounded lower edge; flat bottom. Two mold seams run from rim down sides of head to base ring, with a separate disk-shaped base section. Made by blowing molten glass into a three-part mold. Translucent blue green.

Provenance: Until 1881, collection of Jules Charvet, Le Pecq, Île-de-France; 1881, purchased from J. Charvet by Henry G. Marquand; acquired in 1881, gift of Henry G. Marquand.

Remarks: This beautiful example is not unique there is a similar one in Paris. In PETIT PALAIS, City of Paris Fine Art Museum (active link)









Posted in Uncategorized by Allaire Collection of Glass on December 18, 2018

Roman Glass handkerchief bowl

Date: 3rd–4th century A.D., Dimensions: H.: 3 5/8 in. (9.3 cm) Credit Line: Gift of J. Pierpont Morgan, 1917, Accession Number: 17.194.314, Gallery 169

Dale Chihuly is now known mainly for his large-scale installations.  When we first became familiar with his work we were collecting contemporary or modern glass objects.  His works at that time where much smaller than they are now and he was well known for brilliantly colored fluted bowls. (See example below) One day we were exploring in The Metropolitan Art Museum and found a Roman glass fluted bowl. (See example above) This changed the direction of our collection, understanding of glass history and vastness of this interest.


Dale Chihuly is a contemporary American glassblower whose large-scale installations can be found on permanent display in institutions worldwide. Employing a myriad of colors, Chihuly’s work is often placed atop lights to accentuate it transparent glow. “Glass is the most magical of all materials,” he has said. “It transmits light in a special way.” Born on September 20, 1941 in Tacoma, WA, he studied glassblowing at the University of Madison-Wisconsin—the first dedicated program of study of its kind in the United States. He continued his studies at the Rhode Island School of Design, where he graduated with an MFA in 1986. Set on knowing as much about traditional glassblowing as possible, he traveled to the island of Murano in Venice, Italy, where he worked at the Venini factory perfecting his understanding of the medium through both contemporary and ancient techniques. In 1976, Chihuly lost his eye in a car accident, and would eventually be forced to stop blowing glass directly altogether. He now works with a team to coordinate his numerous projects, which include large tentacle-like glass chandeliers, ikebana installations, and garden works that require careful assembly. In 2002, he gifted his home city of Tacoma one of his largest installations, The Glass Bridge, a concrete bridge decorated with small vases. The artist currently lives and works in Seattle, WA.

Above write-up is from  Artnet at




Posted in Uncategorized by Allaire Collection of Glass on December 16, 2018

Sebastian Stoskopff Still Life of Glasses in a Basket (1644)


Both from the collection of Elisabeth & Theo Zandbergen Venetian toastmaster’s or deceptive glass with spiked gadroons#130 (active Links)


Posted in Uncategorized by Allaire Collection of Glass on December 15, 2018

“AJAX” AMPHORISKOS of Nico F. Bijnsdorp





Mid first century AD. Sidonian or Italian.
H = 8.3 cm. D max = 4.1 cm. D rim = 1.7 cm. D base = 2.5 cm. Weight 42 gr.

Condition: Body intact. Relief more crisp than parallels. Chip to rim, where rests of one aquamarine handle remained. Some weathering.
Technique: Blown in mold with two vertical sections (MCT VIII A). One continuous mold seam around body and base extends onto neck.
Description: Opaque white glass with aquamarine handles (now missing). Everted rim, possibly rounded in flame. Short cylindrical neck on rounded shoulder. Strait walled body, tapering towards the flat base without pontil mark. The body decorated in relief with two scenes: (a) a ship with a high prow and stern, with a single central mast, with sail drawn up to top spar to reveal the rigging descending from the top spar to the hull from which six oars are at rest. In the stern to the right the diminutive figure of a helmsman. In the prow, to the left, a larger figure wearing a helmet and holding a shield. To his left leg a diagonal inscription in Greek, retrograde from bottom to top, reading “AIAC” (= AJAX). Below the ship waves and a fish. (b) Under an olive tree with oval leaves and a wineskin suspended from a branch, a man is sitting on a rock, facing to the right and wearing an animal’s skin or cloak over his shoulder and back. He is stabbing or withdrawing a weapon from an animal, probably a sheep, in front of him.
Remarks: “Ajax” amphoriskoi are extremely rare. Only eight other examples are known in publications. Six of these are in museums and two are in private collections. The relief of this amphoriskos is in comparison to its parallels extremely crisp. The aquamarine color of the (missing) handles is unique. Glasses of this type also belong to a different group of vessels, attributed to the “Workshop of the Floating Handles”, whereby the handle was first attached to the rim and then drawn downwards but not attached to the body. The scenes on this amphoriskos represent two episodes from the mythological story of Ajax, son of Telamon, king of Salamis. On side (a) he is shown leading his island’s contingent of twelve ships that sailed to Troy. After the dead of Achilles, who’s body was rescued from the battlefield by Ajax, the latter went mad after being refused the former’s weapons as his share in the spoils in favor of Odysseus. As a revenge he killed the animals that the Greek had captured from the Trojans. Realizing next day the consequences of what he had done, he committed suicide. Side (b) of the amphoriskos shows the scene of Ajax killing one of the animals.
Provenance: Ex collection Ronald David Bussey, London, 1968
Published: Bonhams, 29 April 2009, No. 97.
Romeins Glas uit particulier bezit, J. v.d. Groen & H. van Rossum 2011, p. 69.
Exhibited: Thermenmuseum Heerlen (NL), Romeins Glas, geleend uit particulier bezit,
29 April – 28 August 2011.
Reference: Whitehouse 2001, Corning Museum, No. 523., Sotheby’s 4/5 June 1979, The Constable-Maxwell Collection, No. 90., Pellatti 1998, Murano Museum, No. 70.
Özet 2000, Bodrum Museum, No. 2.17.91., Matheson 1980, Yale Art Gallery, No. 127.
Israeli 2011, The Shlomo Moussaieff Collection, p. 80.


Posted in Uncategorized by Allaire Collection of Glass on December 13, 2018

Example: Johannes Vermeer’s The Procuress Date 1656


The Allaire collection 18E (active link)



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