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An unusual and nicely proportioned lead metal balustroid wine glass with a trumpet bowl above a fairly complex knopped stem comprised of a ball knop resting on a cushion supported collar at the shoulder and a basal knop below, all standing on a folded conical foot. A very similar glass in the local Tibbenham Collection in Christchurch Mansion, Ipswich, is illustrated in Bickerton’s “English Drinking Glasses” page 107 fig. 213.
Balustroid stem glasses were generally made for tavern use whereas their heavy baluster brothers were made for the wealthy. Because of this division of use balustroids are sometimes less formally made than their upmarket siblings. What they might lose in finer detail they gain with their unselfconscious flair and their ability to convey the fluid nature of glass as a medium. This glass provides a good example to illustrate the point. It has some of the typical balustroid features such as a slightly rocky foot (from manufacture and quite common), a generous sprinkling of minute air bubbles throughout the glass and a slightly textured feel to the stem. However, the glass more than compensates for this with the shear exuberance of its lavish knopping and its delightful poise. Balustroids can be considered to be the Cinderellas of the antique glass world but this charming, down-to-earth example really deserves to be taken to the ball.
Height 6¼ inches;
Bowl diameter 2½ inches;
Foot diameter 2⅞ inches.
In good, original condition.