3000 years of glass making.
Artisans for more than 3000 years have been making glass by applying intense heat to sand.
The Art of making lead crystal is relatively new . Its discovery generally attributed to an Englishman-named - George Ravenscroft 1632- 1683.
As a result it was as brilliant as Rock Crystal , with a greater transparency weight and sonority difference than other forms of glass..
It was baptized "LEAD CRYSTAL" -" Glass with a soul."known to the collector's.
Crystal Glassware is a high quality glassware that does not actually contain crystalline structure.
It's a heavy lead based type of glassware that is often identifiable by the Intricate pattern faceting.
Collector's of glassware can most often recognize what factory each piece of glassware comes from and where it is made.
Little is known about Ravenscroft's personal life.. He was born in 1632. Much is written about the way in which Ravenscroft applied his art of glassmaking and adding Lead.
Unclear , though probably certain that he lived in Venice , Italy. Learning and working as a glassmaker and taking back his techniques to England.
Venitian glass was imported into England as early as the 13th century.
Venitian glass makers were hired in the industry during the 16th century.
It was Ravenscroft however , who introduced this beautiful method of glass making to the world.
John Beare(Englishman) 1748- Started the ROYAL GLASS FACTORY (Real Fabrica de Vidros)in 1748. Known and still known as - MARINHA GRANDE:
In 1769 ..William Stephens, bought the then very small factory and developed it under the protection of the "Marquis de Pombal ". Pombal lent him 80.000 Cruzads(currency of that period) and gave him the right to cut wood in parts of the forest of Marinha Grande, for use in the factory.
He also recognised a demand for building materials after the Earthquake of 1755 and saw a way he could make more lime by using "anthrocite" waste(culm) shipped from England. After which it was produced in Portugal.
Stephens became the richest industrialist in Europe.
In 1826. The factory was given to the state.
|Lapidated Stephen's red lead crystal (collection. )|
made to order at the " Marinha Grande" lead crystal factory.
|collectors piece (stephen's factory)|
|Sketch from stephen's drawings.|
|GREEN LAPIDATED LEAD CRYSTAL "Stephen's factory collector's piece)|
|Ravenscroft Crystal Chandalier.|
|BUST HEAD OF GUILLERME STEPHENS(WILLIAM STEPHENS) at Marinha Grande.|