Ancient Glass Blog of The Allaire Collection


Posted in Uncategorized by Allaire Collection of Glass on November 30, 2021

109E Medieval Beaker of the Allaire Glass Collection

109E Medieval Beaker 15th Century

Height: 8 cm, Date: 15th century

Maigeline is a common name for this style of Waldglas or forest-glass beakers. Other examples in our collection 23E & 49E (see below) are closer to the true maigeline shape. This wrythen beaker above has patterned ribbing covering the sides and continuing down into the foot. The most common style of maigelines have no foot unlike this object. The underside of the base has a small kick. The common style has a very high kick in the base. This high kick helps annealing process by dissipating the heat resulting in less cracked beakers.

Ref: Baumgartner, Phoenix aus Sand and Asche, 1988 P. 310 # 363, Baumgartner, Amend Collection, 2005P. 130, Henkes, Glass Without Gloss, 1994, #15.2

Remarks: The Middle Ages is a period of European history between the decline of the Roman Empire in the fifth century A.D. and the dawn of the Renaissance in 15th century Italy.  The Western Roman Empire ended more or less at the end of the 5th century. The Eastern Roman empire, Byzantium, ended basically in the 15th century when the Ottoman Empire conquered Constantinople and formed an Islamic state at the eastern borders of Europe. During the 1,000 years of the Middle Ages also referred to as the Dark Ages, Europe underwent profound changes. The Early Middle Ages is from the fifth to the eighth century, the Central Middle Ages starting with the eighth to the eleventh and the Late Middle Ages 12th to 14th centuries. Some scholars refer to Early Middle Ages also as the Migration Period. Glass from the Early and Central Middle Ages is mostly a story of drinking vessels, bowls, cups, beakers, drinking horns, and bottles. In the later period drinking vessels start to decline in importance with the rise of stained glass used for the windows of cathedrals.  

Waldglas: Most of the glass vessels produced in the later Middle Ages are from northern Germany, the Low Countries, and central Europe. These objects were made mostly of transparent green Waldglas or forest-glass.  The color came from the presence of impurities (iron oxide) in the raw materials.  This type of glass particularly the Berkemeyer and Krautstrunk evolved in the 17th century into the Roemer.

See part two Medieval Beakers in the Late Middle Ages 12th to 14th C


Posted in Uncategorized by Allaire Collection of Glass on November 26, 2021

Juglet of Hans van Rossum

Date: Late 3rd – 4th century A D Size:↑10.8 cm | ø 5.0 cm | Weight 50  g

Technique: Free blown, handle and coils applied; tooled

Classification: Kisa 1908: Band II nr. 10, p. 317 for the type of the handles

Condition: Intact and perfect condition; some slightly incrustation in the interior

Description: Translucent purple glass, ovoid body; cylindrical neck with glass coil applied to half of neck in two revolutions. Trefoil mouth with a trail of applied purple glass around the lip. Angular coil handle applied to the shoulder, drawn up and down, terminating in fold to edge of rim, forming a thumb-rest. Excess glass snapped-off. Folded base-disk applied with rest of pontil.

Remarks:  A juglet of purple glass, in combination with a trefoil mouth is really rare.

Provenance: Formerly part of a French private collection.

References: Ancient Glass in the Israel Museum, The Eliahu Dobkin Collection and Other Gifts, Y. Israeli 2003 no. 201 Sotheby’s Antiquities New York, auction 7 December 2001 lot no. 177 Christie’s Antiquities New York, auction 13 June 2000 lot no. 364 (wide rounded mouth) Bonhams Antiquities London, auction 7 April 1998 lot no. 153 Christie’s London, auction 9 July 1991, The Alfred Wolkenberg Collection of Ancient Glass, lot no. 75 (wide rounded mouth)


Posted in Uncategorized by Allaire Collection of Glass on November 25, 2021

Thanksgiving Day is a national holiday celebrated in Canada, the United States, some of the Caribbean islands, and Liberia. It began as a day of giving thanks for the blessing of the harvest and of the preceding year. Similarly named festival holidays occur in Germany and Japan. Although Thanksgiving has historical roots in religious and cultural traditions, it has long been celebrated as a secular holiday as well.

It is a day to celebrate and give thanks for health, home, family, friends and good food.


Posted in Uncategorized by Allaire Collection of Glass on November 20, 2021

49R Roman Bottle with Chain Decoration

of the Allaire Glass Collection

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H: 13.3 cm W: 54.8 Date: 5th-6th Century Late Roman Period

 Description: This green glass flask is unusual due to the elaborate chain decoration, a late Roman motif, which was transitional into the early Islamic styling.  The bottle was made by blowing molten glass into the vessel shape, applying trails which were then pinched to forming the chain decoration. The neck of the vessel is rather elongated giving way to a wide funnel mouth topped by a thick rounded rim.

Condition: Intact. The object has weathered inside a beautiful silvery iridescence.

Reference: Ancient and Islamic Glass in the Carnegie Museum of Natural History, Andrew Oliver Jr. Pittsburgh, #190, Kunz 1981, Kunstmuseum Luzern, #448,Verres Antiques et De L’Islam, Juin 3 & 4, 1985 Paris, lot #513


Posted in Uncategorized by Allaire Collection of Glass on November 16, 2021

45R Green Roman Glass Jar with Thin Trailing from Base to Rim

of the Allaire Glass Collection

Date: 3rd to 4th Century AD, H: 8 cm, W 67g

Remarks: A pale-green twin handled jar has a depressed globular form with indented base and wide flaring neck.  The body and neck are decorated with a continuous spiral thread. The jar is almost clear and is in excellent condition.


Ref: Charles Ede, June 1990, # 28


Posted in Uncategorized by Allaire Collection of Glass on November 11, 2021



The Augustinus Collection of Ancient Glass

Date:           Dynasty of the ancient Egyptian New Kingdom, 1292 B.C. – 1189 B.C.

Size:     Length: ® 17.2 cm | ­ Body: 6.78 cm | Ø Mouth: 2.3 x 2.6 cm |  Weight: 99.0 g  |

Description: Polychrome glass vessel formed as a fish*; body of dark blue glass built around a core, with a tailfin formed from a surplus of the body; decorated with festoons of lightblue and yellow glass; with white lines around the mouth and placed as the gills behind the dropped-on eyes in yellow, lightblue and white; yellow dorsal- side- and bellyfins, with six ornaments, in yellow and white, placed on the tail, as prefabricated elements, with visible impressed toolmarks to the fins. A white layer allover is partly visible and originates most likely from combustion or wear throughout time.*

What kind of fish is depicted has not become clear but a nile fish or perch fish comes very close*; the six adornments on the tailfin, plus the small seized belly- and side-fins, brings up the thought that the representation of a fish is purely symbolic and colourfull, meant to be an offer to the gods by the rulers of the New Kingdom, who at the same time were the gardiens of the secret of how to produce ‘the melted stone’, valued as precious as silver and gold.

Technique: Fish-shaped bottle: kobalt blue glass as a base formed around a core of the body – remnants of the core are still visible when observed into the mouth or opening of the bottle -, 17 windings of a socalled Guirlandenmuster*, of which 14 were produced in mid yellow and three in light blue, starting with one blue festoon behind the gills, one in the middle and one on top of a yellow line near the back of the body or tail.

The mouth was formed after the festoons and basic body were rolled in on a flat surface; the tail was made of a surplus of the dark blue body mass, after which the dorsal-, side- and bellyfins, eyes, and decorations on the tail were positioned in a second step. The fins were created of the same yellow color as the festoons, that partly occurs in the eyes and on the tail ornaments aswell. The eyes are built up from three colours: yellow, blue and white, whereas the tail-ornaments are formed from yellow and white glass only.

Condition: Cracked and unrepaired, for the fish-shaped vessel most likely suffered from tension when the dorsal- and sidefins, plus the tail ornaments, were placed on the hardly cooled and then reheated body – together with the eyes, all the external elements  were prefabricated -. Some scholars* state that the summum of technical skill and agility might have been to create the elements while the glass was still at it’s highest temperature. Another possible reason is, the glass could have suffered from tension during the process of cooling down*. The white encrustation seems to be from later date, for it covers the breaklines, and might have been caused by a fire, intentionally or unintentionally started before burial or disposal. Also the contact with water during a long period of time, might have caused decomposition of the glass itself, thus forming the white layer, of which at date only a small percentage is left but still visible. It seems parts have been removed by means of scratching the surface.

The Museum van Oudheden in Leiden, the Netherlands, was the first to inspect the fish in a histotorical context resulting in a simple answer: ‘it is not equivalent with the period of Toutanchamon’,.

 A new research to date the fish in a chemical context at the Radboud University of Nijmegen brought the conclusion that further investigation to pinpoint the production date of the glass is needed by means of Roentgen fluorescence that might tell the age of the glass exactly. The results will be published at a later occasion and will become accessible to scholars in the field of Archeology…

It is a true fact that the same technique of working the glass, also into fish-shaped bottles, did last untill the second century B.C. in styles of different outcome.*


* 1. According to Birgit Slick-Nolte in her dissertation* of 1968, fish-shaped bottles belong to the ‘exceptional forms’ (page 176, XI), she mentions four examples in total from that time, i.e. The New Kingdom: one in the Brooklyn Museum (length: 10.7 cm, no.37.316 E), one in the Kairo Museum (length:11,0 cm, no. J.32974), and two in the Britisch Museum (length: 11.6 and 14,0 cm, no’s. 63786 and 55193).

A fifth, though much smaller fish, in a similar technique and style was added to her investigation in 1998. See her written report of December 3rd., 1998, Glass vessel in the shape of a Nile fish.

From recent time four fish-shaped bottles of a later date and different technique can be added: one in the Yale-Collection, with similar dorsal fins and mouth in a blue colour; another in the Getty Collection, with a similar shaped tailfin; also a fish in a totally different shape from the museum in St. Petersburg (Kunina 1997, p. 294 no. 200) and last but not least the Corning Museum of Glass fish registered as: no. 946/55.1.5. (length:16.0cm), that comes very close in terms of technical approach, but was created in a totally different era of history and geographical space: the 1st. century AD, or later.

2. B. Slick-Nolte/ M. Stern in: Early Glass of the Ancient World/ Ernesto Wolf Collection. Prefabricated and Protruding Appliqués: ‘Examples of protruding appliqués include fish fins made from single or multiple segments of cane fused to the surface of fish-shaped vessels’, from the time of Amenhotep III (1387-1350 BC, footnote 124: Nolte 1968, plates 28.6, 29.1,2). See the example of a sandcore formed bottle with two protruding breasts on the body of a vessel similar in style to the eye- and tail-ornaments of the AcoaG # 64-fish – in Bonn, Akademisches Kunstmuseum no. E 191. ‘Werkkreis’ 1, Tafel V, no.22, page: 214. A very special method to date the object, making it part of a certain group of glass-workers, all working exclusively for the Pharaoh.

3. Birgit Slick-Nolte / M. Stern in: Early Glass of the Ancient World/ Ernesto Wolf Collection. Page 34: ‘The latest and most highly developed appliqués were stratified eyes, made from the second half of the Eighteenth Dynasty (mid 14th century B.C. The eyes usualy consist of progressively smaller layers of yellow, blue, and white glass, but other colour combinations were also used. Stratified eye appliqués, usually fused flush, often decorate the walls of orange and turquoise coloured glass vessels; they are also found on vessels in the form of a fish. It is not clear whether the ancient craftsman prepared the stratified eye motifs in advance from slices of canes with different diameters, for he might have created the motif by fusing individual slices to the surface of the glass itself?’

Provenance: Malkata, El-Amarna, Lisht, or Menshiyeh in Egypt, are the only known glass production centres of The New Kingdom. From a private dutch collection in Maastricht. The Netherlands. Previously unpublished.


Fossing, Poul, Glass vessels Before Glass-Blowing, 1940.

*Nolte, Birgit, Die Glasgefässe im alten Ägypten, 1968, Dissertation,Verlag Bruno Hessling Berlin, Münchner ägyptologische Studien no. 14.

Goldstein, Sidney M., Pre-Roman and Early Roman Glass, 1979.

Grose, Frederick David, Early Ancient Glass, The Toledo Museum, 1989.

Nolte/Stern, Early Glass of the Ancient World/ Ernesto Wolf Collection, 1994.

AcoaG 64.4 view from above, facing to the right.
Acoag 64. 5 view from the side, facing to the right.
AcoaG 64.6 view at the belly, facing to the right.

Quote from Abdel Rakman El Gamal, May 28 2019,

‘It may be of interest to know that the Nile perch which is currently considered a premium freshwater fish and contributes significantly to fish exports of several African countries was a sacred species in old Egypt.

According to the Natonal Museum labeling and ‘Our Egypt portal regarding Nile perch, the species during the Graeco-Roman period was eaten throughout Egypt except in Esna whereas the species was regarded as sacred and presumably not eaten.

In fact, the Greek called the town Latopolis after the Nile perch (Lates niloticus Percidae).

The species revered as it seems to be the embodiment of the goddess Neith and buried in extensive cemeteries.’


Posted in Uncategorized by Allaire Collection of Glass on November 8, 2021

84R Roman Glass Concave Beaker with Trailing

of The Allaire Glass Collection

Date: 4th to 5th century, Height: 8 cm, Diameter at rim: 5.3 cm Weight: 44.5 g

Description: Beaker is a transparent light greenish glass with slight silvery iridescence; blown, with applied trail of the same glass color. The rim is out spayed, thickened and rounded; wall descends vertically, but with a slightly concave profile, almost to bottom, where it bends in sharply into the solid foot-ring base with pontil mark. Trail wound once around wall with ends overlapping above the midpoint.

Remarks: This type of beaker was a common form found in Syria and Palestine.

References: Roman Glass in The Corning Museum of GlassVol II, David Whitehouse, 2001 #662,#664,#666, Glass From the Roman Empire, Paul E. Cuperus, June 2009 p.95, Les verres antiques du musee du Louvres #989, Ancient Glass in the Israel Museum, The Elihu Dobkin Collection and Other Gifts, Yael Israeli, The Israel Museum Jerusalem, 2003 #167, Stern-Roman, Byzantine, and Early Medieval Glass, Ernesto Wolf Collection, Marianne Stern, 2001 #108, #109, Fire and Sand: Ancient Glass in the Princeton University Art Museum, Anastassios C. Antonaras, 2012 #185, #187

84R is in the center of this picture and is shown in its case with other like colored Roman glass vessels.


Posted in Uncategorized by Allaire Collection of Glass on November 6, 2021

76R Green Late Roman Glass Goblet of The Allaire Glass Collection

76R Green Frankish Goblet 2

Transparent pale green glass goblet with conical bowl the rim rounded and slightly thickened showing horizontal tool marks near edge.  The short stem was made separately, then connected.  The folded foot has a hollow tubular edge.  Goblets of similar form have been found dating from late Roman 4th on into the 6th&7th Century.

H: 10 cm

D: 5th to 7th Century

Ref: Corning Vol1 #156, Stern, 2001 #174


Posted in Uncategorized by Allaire Collection of Glass on November 3, 2021

26E Spanish Facon de Venise Wine Glass of The Allaire Glass Collection

26E Spanish Facon de Venise Wine Glass with Hollos-blown knop, Spanish 18th Century

Dimensions: H= 10.5 cm, Stem H = 3.0  Weight = 9.9 grams, Date = 18th century

Origin: Catalonia, Spain

Stem definition: Hollow, inverted baluster stem

Description: This straw colored wine has a bucket bowl with a hollow baluster stem and folded foot. Glassmakers of Catalonia in the 18th century often imitated the Venetian styles but added their own distinctive creativity.

Ref: Frothingham # 39A


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