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.

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


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


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


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.


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


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


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


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'


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


Pressed glass was invented in America and England.


Fr. Egermann rediscovered and refined colour pickling.


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


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

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


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


In Germany started the automatically production of goblets.


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


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


Start of Glass recycling in Germany.


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


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