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Stained Glass Through the Ages

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RUNNING HEAD: Milestone 2 Structured Draft

Evolution of Stained Glass through the Ages
Marina Keenan
Southern NH University
FAS-201 Introduction to Humanities
Professor Peter Sukonek
February 2, 2015

Glass making is thought to have originated with the Phoenicians during the Mesopotamian Era around 3500 BCE. People were creating with glass even prior to this by using naturally occurring class like obsidian. Obsidian was a common material for weapons, jewelry and considered to be a currency. Initially glass was difficult to make. People were still working on the tools and techniques needed to create glass. In the first century BC the glass blowpipe was invented. This discovery revolutionized the glass making techniques, it was now faster, easier and cheaper to make. From there glass making and glass art spread throughout Europe and Northern Africa.

The making of colored glass has also been around since ancient times. This process was also thought to have been born by Mesopotamians. Glass is made in colors by adding metals to the mix. Although the art of exact color making was not known until the 8th century when a Persian Chemist, Jabir ibn Hayyan created 46 recipes for creating colored glass. The oxidation of the metals is what ultimately results in the colored glass. The specific art of stained glass windows came about in ancient Roman times. Ancient Romans glazed glass into windows. The used blowing techniques to spin discs and made glass cylinders. The glass was not very transparent.

Religions and Christian Churches in particular spurred the patronage of stained glass window making. One of the oldest examples of stained glass is found at the St Paul’s Monastery in Jarrow, England. The monastery was founded in 686 AD. The oldest complete European Windows were at Augsburg Cathedral in Germany. (Pictured below) The patronage of the arts...

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