NEW ENGLISH TRANSLATION - Venetian Renaissance glass technology revealed

Italian proficient glass addicts may be familiar with the 2001 publication Ricette vetrarie del Rinascimento by C. Moretti and T. Toninato which transcribes a previously unknown mid 16th century manuscript of Venetian glassmaking practices and recipes. After a five-year grind I have now completed an English translation of the entire text and lengthy discussion which concludes that it was probably written by a member or relation of the Barovier family about 1560. To this I have added a few explanatory notes of my own and also some by Prof. Cesare Moretti with whom I collaborated in the later stages of the work to check for accuracy. But there is more! For some decades Venetian historian Luigi Zecchin has been beavering away in the Venetian archives as a result of which other glassmaking recipe books have come to light. The discussion compares the recipes in this text with those from five other recipe books (all new except Biringuccio and Neri) dating from the 1st half of the 14th century to 1644. These reveal that the glassmakers of the period were meticulous in their preparation and purification of the ingredients used, the type of pot required for a particular batch and the management of their furnaces. A form of cristallo using powdered flints was being made as early as the 14th century before the intrusion of the Black Death. Potash from grape vines as well as soda was used in formulating the batch where appropriate. So were extraordinary materials such as sheeps' shin bones!!!! and gold as used by the blacksmith. The recipes cover in addition to plain glass and cristallo, coloured glasses, enamels and the manufacture of mosaics - particularly those containing gold or silver foil inclusions. How these were made and the complexity of some of the recipes will amaze, particularly those for calcedonio (agate glass) as a result of which its manufacture by da Costa for Ravenscroft at the Savoy glasshouse resulted in the discovery of English lead crystal. It is no exaggeration to say that this text will revolutionise the understanding and thinking of those interested in early glassmaking and the processes involved.Reviews to date have been favourable. How much? you ask for the 94 A4 pages plus prelims and two pages of coloured plates. It costs only £15.00 plus P+P of £5.00 First Class (UK),and by Airmail £7.00 (Europe), £10.00 (Rest of World) so it will not break the bank. You can order via this web site. Members of the Glass Circle can save the postage if they are able to collect the book at a Glass Circle meeting. Email