Amberina Glass

Amberina Glass
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Amberina Glass

Amberina Glass: A short explanation:

Amberina glass was first patented in the USA by Joseph Locke and Edward D. Libby in 1883. Locke was head designer for the Cambridge works of the New England Glass Company, and W. L Libbey and Son were proprietors of this glassworks. Amberina Glass is "heat sensitive" glass, which shades in colour from amber at the bottom to red at the top. This colour shading is due to the effects of reheating the top part of the glass before allowing it to cool. Amberina glass contains a precipitate of colloidal gold (as does gold ruby glass), which is heat sensitive and turns red at the right temperature.

If the effect is reversed and the bottom part of a vessel is reheated rather than the top, the result is called "reverse amberina"- which is red at the bottom and amber at the top.

Mt Washington Glass Company of New Bedford, USA, also made amberina glass for a few years in the early 1880s. There was a dispute between the New England Glass Company and Mt Washington Glass about patent rights, which was not resolved by Mt Washington calling their amberina glass "Rose Amber", and in 1886 an injunction was granted against them and they stopped making it.

Hobbs, Brockunier and Co of Wheeling USA also made amberina glass, but they had obtained a license from Libbey/New England Glass.

There were also European companies making versions of amberina glass, including the great French company Baccarat.

Amberina glass was used to make both blown art glass and pressed glass items. It is still popular today and is made by contemporary glass works such as Boyd in the USA.

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References and Further Reading

1: Mt Washington Art Glass by Betty B. Sisk, published by Collector Books, 2003 (see pages 168 - 172).

2: Hobbs, Brockunier & Co., Glass by Neila & Tom Bredehoft, published by Collector Books, 1997.

3: 19th Century Glass, Revised Edition by A. C. Revi, Schiffer Publishing Ltd, 1967 (pages 16 - 27).

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