So I have this pitcher......

DLM2000December 10, 2009

A family piece, from my grandmother. She lived with us so it was always in the dining room breakfront of the house I grew up in. It was used on special occasions, only for water as I remember. When my grandmother would decide it was time to clean the breakfront shelves and contents, she'd hold this up to the light or in the sun so I could see all the brilliant colors. Nice memories. I don't have a breakfront, my dining room storage is closed cupboards, so this is not on view, unfortunately.

I see no marks on it but I think we've already established that I have no idea what to look for! Can you tell me what it is, where it might be from, time period.... And oh, yeah, how much could I get for it if I sold it - NOT!

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If it's glass, I'd Google 'Bohemian' and 'Moser' and you'll find some pieces that are similar in many respects. Are there 'jewels' on there? Paint? Or glass on glass? Or glass and enamel on glass?

    Bookmark   December 10, 2009 at 6:48PM
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Looks like set stones to me.
I am mystified....never have seen anything quite like that.
Moser and Bohemian are starts....but very broad categorys.
If I had to describe it for a catalog, I would say "blown glass pitcher with applied handle. Gold and enamel decorated, with...either sets tones or enamel jewels...."
A fabulous piece...shouts Czech...Bohemia ...Gypsy.
was your grandmother Bohemian or Czech?
Linda C

    Bookmark   December 10, 2009 at 7:35PM
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Would it help if I got a closer shot?

My grandmother was Russian, or at least her parents were - she never wanted to discuss whether she was born here or there, but it was very near the Hungarian border.

    Bookmark   December 10, 2009 at 10:04PM
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I have no idea what it would be worth, but my guestimate is that it would be considered pretty special. I hope you are going to get your things appraised. For insurance value, if nothing else.

    Bookmark   December 10, 2009 at 10:56PM
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Yeah....a closer shot would be good....
Did she bring it with her from Russia or Hungary ..?

    Bookmark   December 10, 2009 at 11:51PM
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I would look for Russian, I used to read a lot of books on Russia when I was a kid & they had a movie on the Russian Royal family-Romanovs-I think, that was killed & something about what life was like in Russia & also when movie was made, showed lot of glassware with jewels & enamel & said it dated back to the Royal family & their lifestyle. My neighbor was from Russia but she didn't have anything like that. If you Google "Russian Royal family" you should come up with who they were seems like Anastasia claimed to be the daughter, or try "Russian Royal Jewels" maybe they brought some to L.A. for a show once, I remember seeing this kind of work & I haven't been to Russia. Schroeder's Antique book says that the metalcraft men used semi precious stones & precious stones in many of their work & this type work was popular 1880-1910, most famous Carl Faberge 1852-1920 he did the fabulous eggs!! Look for any mark on your pitcher, Hold it up to light & may see some marks. Either signed by artist or Russian word for Russia or number of some type. If not marked on bottom or bottom edge could be under the handle or on handle need good light & magnifying glass & hold on tight to it!! put a towel under it on a table. May be worth quite a lot!

    Bookmark   December 11, 2009 at 2:50AM
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Well I'm no photographer but hopefully these will help. I don't *think* these are jewels - can't imagine how they would be attached. It almost appears to be enamel-like to mimic jewels - possible? The gold is wearing a bit in places but I guess that is expected with the use it had and age.

squirrel we don't have specific addendums per item but do have a general 'art and antiques' ryder for insurance - our agent has seen the house and contents but I'll ask again if we're adequately covered.

Linda I have no idea if this came with her (or actually her family) or if it was purchased here. She was born in 1894 and either came here as an infant or was born shortly after her parents arrived. I suppose she could have purchased it as a young bride, too. But if so, I have no idea if it was new at that time or not. There's no one left to ask.

sunnyca I've looked for marks - can't find a thing.

The detailing is really beautiful. Not only is there actual relief but the 'painting' emphasizes/amplifies the relief. It's the round 'center's that have me totally stumped - can't tell what they are at all. There are prong-like details on them to creat an illusion, I believe but they aren't actual prongs unless I'm totally whacked.

    Bookmark   December 11, 2009 at 10:13AM
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Get that piece appraised by someone who really knows what they're doing -- it looks fabulous! I've seen many smaller and less detailed pieces of that general style offered for $500-800, others for $2,000-$5,000 -- so it's worth getting it looked at by a really knowledgeable professional. Are you in or near a major city where that can be done?

I would not count on finding any makers' marks, since many pieces of gorgeous glassware (even of that caliber) are unmarked. If I had to guess from the close-ups, it looks to me like the periwinkle? odd-shaped pieces are another layer of glass that has been carved away to reveal the ruby glass underneath - a technigue called 'cased glass'. Depending on how raised it is, the white may also be a layer of glass. Then enamel work and guilding, with the jewels glued on.

I'll try to find some good photos of similar pieces for you --

    Bookmark   December 11, 2009 at 10:46AM
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Thanks sweeby - that's very interesting about the cased glass. I'll have to research that a bit and see how it's done - sounds fascinating. I'm in suburban Chicago - plenty of qualified appraisers. I had an appointment set up with one a while ago and had to cancel - just never rescheduled. But this wasn't even the piece I intended to ask about!

    Bookmark   December 11, 2009 at 10:53AM
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dlm, that is one of the most stunning and intriguing pieces to come across this board in a long time (imho). It is breathtaking!

I followed the lead of some suggestions here and did some searching. I guess I became obsessed with it because I've been looking till my vision has blurred (A day off for me, I should be getting something done around here, but am that enthralled by it).

I have only found two so far that are remotely similar.
This Russian beaker. Yes, the substrate is metal rather than glass, but envision that style of workmanship and materials transferred onto glass. So perhaps it is of Russian origin? Here is the home page of that site (coincidentally I just noticed located in Chicago!).

Following sweeby's lead I started adding 'cased' to 'glass' in my search terms. I had seen other Moser pieces while searching earlier but none similar till this Moser piece on ebay. Appears to be similar, tho not nearly as beautiful as yours, imho.

I can't wait to see how this turns out - just can't get over how beautiful that pitcher is!

    Bookmark   December 11, 2009 at 11:34AM
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It doesn't look like cased glass to's just very very nice enameled glass with what looks like set stones glued on? Or affixed in the glass some how.
You can see some wear to the gold...and I bet at one time that handle was all gold.
What does the inside look like? And what's the view looking straight down from the top? And the bottom?
Cased glass means the glass has 2 layers...usually white and another color....and it may or may not be cut away. Phoenix glass is an example of cased glass that is often carved to reveal other layers...but that 2 color glass often referred to a "bohemian glass" is not really cases...although there it a top layer of a different color. It's commonly called "overlay"...which is different from flashed..
I know confusing.
Not sure why you would want to pay an appraiser, unless you want to "schedule" things on your household policy...I am sure you would never sell it....but for might be nice to be able to say this is a piece of Imperial Russian Kerfefsky glass made in the 1890.. LOL!
I'm curious too!
Linda c

    Bookmark   December 11, 2009 at 11:53AM
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It looks enameled to me, and the style does seem to be Russian. I don't think Fabrege worked on tableware, but there were plenty of china and glass manufacturers in Russia before the revolution.

You might contact A La Vieille Russie in New York, and see what they think.

Here is a link that might be useful: A La Vieille Russie

    Bookmark   December 11, 2009 at 12:40PM
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moonshadow you pointed me in the right direction, I think - look what I found in the link below. And I'm so flattered you find this worth all your efforts - thank you! It's quite fun to share even just the pictures with people who have an appreciation and knowledge - otherwise things sit in cupboards and just collect dust :(

Linda it's not layered - it is cranberry with the decoration applied to the outside. The only reason to involve an appraiser would be for insurance value and perhaps a more specific ID and at this point I'm thinking that might not be a bad idea. There is a local appraisor with an excellent reputation who charges by the hour - you set out everything you want looked at and he goes through piece by piece. It'd be fun to hire him for an 'Appraisal Party' and have some friends in for wine, snacks and appraisals - BYOUI bring your own unidentified objects !

ideefixe thank you for that link - it's certainly worth an email and some pictures to see if they can offer any information.

Here is a link that might be useful: Moser Enameled Cranberry Pitcher

    Bookmark   December 11, 2009 at 3:00PM
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Here are some similar items attributed to Moser:

And the link below goes to the 'Great Glass Library' which has a fabulous gallery with lots of pieces in a similar vein.

Here is a link that might be useful: Great Glass

    Bookmark   December 11, 2009 at 5:30PM
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lindac big is your pitcher?
Does it have a polished pontil mark on the bottom? That would be a spot about the size of a quarter on the bottom that is slightly indented and polished.
In googling and reading....those applied glass "jewels" are very typical Moser glass. And all Moser glass was mouth blown and an ID mark is the finely polished pontil mark.
Moser is always non lead crystal.....and much if not most of moser is marked...with a variety of marks.
How about a picture of the bottom? Looks to me like it is Moser.....and I am sure it's one of a will find pictures of things similar...but not exactly like it.
Linda C

    Bookmark   December 11, 2009 at 5:49PM
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Oh, you are very welcome, dlm. But I'll have to share credit with sweeby for some of my searching, she shoved me in another direction. ;)

I dunno, I'm no glass expert by any means, but somehow something isn't sitting right with me comparing this piece to the other Moser pieces seen so far (to my untrained eye). dlm's looks better, nicer quality. It's very subtle, what I'm seeing. What's the description I'm struggling for here...more refined somehow. Like it has an essence to it that's not shared by the other pieces. (Maybe it's because I'm so enchanted with it, lol.) Or maybe it's all due to the craftsman's skill. Just thinking out loud here...

Just for kicks, here's a virtual tour of the Moser Glass Museum. Even the Queen of England has some. ;) But only a couple similar to this style are shown.

    Bookmark   December 11, 2009 at 7:03PM
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"And all Moser glass was mouth blown and an ID mark is the finely polished pontil mark."

That goes against much of what I've read about Moser --- (I'm researching a vase I inherited that I think may be theirs. Nothing like your piece DLM other than the cased glass and enamel.)

And Moonshadow - There's a whole lot of garbage being touted as 'Moser' that absolutely is NOT Moser. Typical examples of that ilk are:

    Bookmark   December 11, 2009 at 10:10PM
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Sweeby....curious....what have you read that goes against the fact that Moser was blown with a finely polished pontil?
Early in the history, they decorated blanks made by others....but at that time all fine glass was mouth blown. Today you can find machine blown glass, but it is not the same quality as mouth blown...judging by the price.
DLM's pitcher isn't cased she says, and the last pictures clearly show that. The lamp above is cased Bohemian glass.

The eBay link posted by DLM clearly shows the polished pontil on the bottom of that pitcher, showing that the piece was mouth blown and hand finished.
Linda C

    Bookmark   December 11, 2009 at 11:41PM
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"what have you read that goes against the fact that Moser was blown with a finely polished pontil?"

Absolutely nothing Linda -- My response was *very* unclear - sorry! And I think I misinterpreted your post also... I thought you were saying that Moser's pieces were always marked -- My research indicates that they often weren't.

The parts that look 'cased' to me are the irregularly-shaped lavender-blue chips. They appear too 3-D to be enamel, and don't have the same 'glued-on' appearance as the jewels. (If course, I could be wrong.) While 'flashed' glass has a much thinner color layer, I am under the impression that 'cased' and 'overlay' glass are really just two different terms for the same thing.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2009 at 11:39AM
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sweeby the irregularly-shaped lavender-blue chips you mentioned are what I was talking about when I said **Not only is there actual relief but the 'painting' emphasizes/amplifies the relief.** There is some serious shading work done in places - I'm a decorative painter and the line work on this absolutely wows me.

I'm going to get a picture of the base now and see what other questions I missed - thanks again for all your input everyone.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2009 at 11:49AM
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The pitcher is just under 9" tall and a bit over 6" wide at the widest point, not including the handle - with that it's 7.5" wide.

The pointil is larger than a quarter as you can see - don't know if that's significant or not in relation to a Moser ID

But it does appear to be highly polished (sounds like I know what I'm talking about, doesn't it!)

    Bookmark   December 12, 2009 at 12:16PM
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You saying what I think? that the blue chips are painted to look 3 D and not actually raised?
Cased is a term for 2 or more layers of about the same thickness ...overlay is a color of glass laid over a piece....and over lay usually is the term used when it's color over clear....cased usually refers to white under a color and flashed is just a thin dip coat of glass meant to be cut through.
Notice I said "Usually!"...French cameo glass like some made by Daum Nancy is a good example of an exception.
Linda C

    Bookmark   December 12, 2009 at 12:22PM
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Thank you....that shows it's finely made and blown. It's not the size of the pontil that matters but how well polished it is...I have things with an unpolished well as things with a nicely polished mark.
It's clear that it's not cased...just lovely cranberry glass...nothing about it says it isn't Moser....but in the absence of a mark or an example in a pattern book, no one can tell for sure. There were lots of fine glass makers in that area pre war.
Doesn't matter what it is....a rose by any other name etc.
It's beautiful! and was your grandmother's...Moser or another factory doesn't diminish it one bit. But we know that Moser did do some glass in that Persian sort of grometric style in addition to the curvey curly decorations.
Guestimating....$250....maybe $350?
Probably prewar.
Linda C

    Bookmark   December 12, 2009 at 12:41PM
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No, the blue chips ARE raised but they are also shaded (painted) to accentuate the relief. Clearer? The value is totally unimportant (but thank you for the guesstimate) because as you say, it's not going anywhere - nice to have a ballpark but things are only worth what they sell for and this isn't going to be for sale.

We're in mid dining room botox (tweaking and refreshing, not buying all new stuff) and now I want DH to build hutch units for our consoles so that the pretties like this pitcher can be seen!

I'll dig another mystery piece out soon - I'm having fun with all the information and it's a kick to show things to people that appreciate and know what is what. Now I want to see what people here collect - and why.

Thanks for all your help and experience.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2009 at 1:24PM
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Great item! The green "jewels" in the enamelled panels are glass. It's a wonderful cut overlay jug. Enamelling and gilding are masterful. Could be Russian, or eastern European. I'm not feeling that it's Moser, but can't put my finger on why I think this. The decoration is lavish yet restrained to neat little panels of symmetric design. Probably late late 19th or very early 20th c. I will not hazard a guess to value, as its date of manufacture is out of my bailiwick. Best thing would be to ask for validation. You can locate appraisers at some museums and at the better auction salerooms. It would be nice to know for certain what you have. What a nice piece of your life, too, with the memories it brings.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2009 at 4:41PM
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