preserve, look through, decorate glass

Why was glass so popular as a material? For the simple reason that it has incomparable properties! Depending on the additives, the material can be clear and transparent, tinted, coloured or non-transparent (opaque). When melted, it can be transformed into almost boundless shapes. Depending on its thickness or the thickness of its walls, once solidified it is fragile to stable, it has no smell or taste of its own. Light can be refracted in it as in a prism or it can be bundled as by a magnifying glass. Its surface may be engraved or painted. Glass objects seem to be caught in action, as if a liquid had been frozen. Glass was as highly valued as gold, both for its material properties and for its aesthetics. So, how was glass used? The examples below provide a first insight into the manifold usage of glass objects.