Wine glass with a silver groat in the stem
England, late 17th century
The coin is dated 1687
George Ravenscroft (1632-83), an English glassmaker working in London, is considered responsible for the introduction into England of glass containing lead, and for the further development of lead glass. By around 1681 other English glass-makers were also making heavy, but brilliantly clear lead glass.
It was not possible
to blow this glass thinly, and thus impossible to make the strong,
simple forms with the delicately pulled ribbons of glass in the
Venetian style. Instead a new, essentially English form of
decoration was created, with a variety of stem forms using knops,
balusters and teardrops. Glass was often decorated with applied and
The inclusion of a coin - here a groat (fourpence piece) - within the stem was a popular glassmaking trick.
R.J. Charleston, Journal of Glass Studies-2, 10 (1968), pp. 156-67
H. Tait (ed.), Five thousand years of glass (London, The British Museum Press, 1991)
R. J. Charleston, English glass and the glass us (London, Allen and Unwin, 1984)
Diameter: 8.600 cm
Gift of Mrs. Edmund Lamb through the