Glass and its history

Glass is an fascinating material, that move the people from the immemorial. It exists sine more than 7000 years and belongs to the oldest materials.

Also the art of glass-blowing exists already since 2000 years. The word 'glass' is based on the Germanic, from the term  'glasa' and means something is shinning or shimmering. The history of glass goes from ca. 8000 before Christ to the 20th century.

We have summarized the most important milestones on the following timetable.

Timetable from 8000 B.C. to 1997

From 8000 to 6000 B.C.
In the neolithic was natural glass, also called 'Obsidian', used for arrowheads and spearheads, gemstones and amulets by grinding, polishing, boring and fragmenting.

 

5500 B.C.
In Egypt was discovered the oldest glass piece which was artificially created by melting.

 

4000 B.C.
At this time was the discovery and application of the melting for the glass production.

 

At the turning point of history
The blowpipe was invented and used in Syria.

 

At 50 AD
Influence of the glass production by Roman occupying forces in Germania, Spain and Britain.
Pliny the Elder described the antique glass art.

 

From 350 to 700 AD
At that time the glasses were sparingly decorated with rills and were made of Utilitarian glass. The processing areas of Utilitarian glass were Rhineland, Belgium and Norway.

 

From 800 AD to 1200
The glass production of simple glass has diffused by monastery glassworks.

1023
Hrabanus Maurus has illustrated a glass factory for the first time.

 

1100
The Benedictine monk Theophilus wrote a Latin description of the glass production.

 

1200
Expansion of the glass factories in the forests of the Bavarian Forest and the Fichtel Mountains.
Mainly drinking vessels of every kind were produced.

 

1291
Emigration of the glassworks Venice to the island Murano.

1500 to 1550
Venetian glass art experience its peak.
All antique production and decoration methods were rediscovered an improved.

 

1566
Already 69 glass factories were recorded on the Bavarian country plate.

 

1635
The coal heating in covered stoves was implemented for the first time.

 

1674
Georg Ravenscroft from England invented the 'flint glass'. This glass consists of  lead crystal with 30% lead content.

 

1688
Lucas de Nehou from France invented the rolling process for cast glass.

In the 18th century
Thuringian gaffers produced filmy glass threads, the so called 'angel or fairy hiar'

 

1791
Production of soda was executed on the basis of the sodium chloride process.

 

1810
Pressed glass was invented in America and England.

 

1820
Fr. Egermann rediscovered and refined colour pickling.

 

1856/1858
The brothers Siemens invented the regeneration stoves for the heating of glass-kiln.

 

1863
The soda production on basis of the ammonia-soda-process, which is still used today, was invented.

1910
Hartford Empire-Comp. (USA) invented the 'Speiser'-Glass machine.

 

1959
Sir Alastair Pilkington from England developed the float glass technology for the production of flat glasses.

 

1961
In Germany started the automatically production of goblets.

 

1971
The law for the identification of lead crystal and crystal of the EU came into effect.

 

1973
The first ceramic stove tops for electro- and gas ranges came on the market.

 

1974
Start of Glass recycling in Germany.

 

1994
Flat glasses were produced of borosilicate glass by the float glass technology.

 

1997
It was developed lead free and barium free crystal glass for the consumption sector.