The first evidence of glass making was found in Syria around 5000BC. But the first archaeological evidence was found to be around 1500 BC in Egypt and Mesopotamia. Initially, manufacturing glass was a very difficult and a slow process. But it became easier with the invention of the blow pipe in Syria in the 1st century. Glass industry expanded manifold in the coming centuries, slumped in the next years, and picked up again in the 700 BC in Mesopotamia and in 500BC in Egypt. Over the next 500 years, Egypt, Syria and other countries along the Mediterranean Sea were centers for glass manufacturing.
The miraculous art of making stained glass on churches and cathedrals spread across Europe the first examples being 13th century Chartres
and 14th century Canterbury cathedral windows.
Before glass manufacturing was invented, naturally occurring glass, especially obsidian or black volcanic glass, was used for making jewelry, knives and money. As new inventions paved the way for finer glass, glass-making equipment was transferred to island of Murano in 1291. By 1608, the world saw its first glass factory in Jamestown, Virginia in the United States. In the early 1800s, the invention of hand operated machine ended the practice of blowing individual bottles
. Slowly and gradually, machinery started being used for development and manufacturing of various kinds of glass products. Mass production of window glasses was possible after 1902, when Irving W. Colburn invented the sheet glass drawing machine. In 1904, the American engineer Michael Owens patented the automatic bottle blowing machine.
Glass has many more uses now, as it can withstand heat, rain, cold and even temperature swings. It is fully recyclable and sustainable. It has a wide range of applications from packaging, tableware, interior design, appliances and electronics, automotive, medical field, and fiber optics among others. One of the most common uses of glass is the mirror. Although any polished metal can be a mirror, glass is used as a substrate to hold and protect a thin metallic layer. Another major use of glass is glassware or drinking glass such as water tumbler, wine glass, champagne flute, cocktail glass or even the beer mug.
A good quality glass needs to be made of borosilicate as it is more heat resistant than other types of glass, making it ideal for glass pieces. A common misconception is that a thick quality glass is of better quality than thinner ones. But the fact is, even a 9 mm thick but bad quality glass can break easily. At the end of the day, if you can’t judge the quality of the glass by looking at it, buy glass from a good brand, that way you’ll be assured of the quality. For designer glassware go to www.Beverlyheels.com for fab designs and great quality.