All crystal clear : 18th-century glass à la façon de Bohème from the cistercian nunnery of Clairefontaine, Belgium
Faculty of Sciences. Chemistry
Journal of glass studies. - Corning
, p. 137-+
University of Antwerp
Excavations at the Cistercian nunnery of Clairefontaine, located near Arlon in the south of Belgium, revealed an assemblage of 18th-century colorless glass. The morphology of the vessels and the engraved decoration suggest a central European origin or, at least, stylistic inspiration. The composition of the glass points to a recipe combining silica, lime, and potash: a colorless potash glass a la facon de Boheme. This article considers the technology, morphology, and origin of the vessels. The art-historical analysis is supported by chemical research (scanning electron microscopy energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy [SEM-EDX]). The finds are also discussed in light of the emerging northwestern European glass industry, changing consumer practices during the 18th century, and their meaning for the inhabitants of the abbey.