RESERVED - Rare 'Irish' Volunteer Opaque Twist Cordial Glass c1760

£1,150.00 $1,447.74 Product Code: 2019090402

Date & Origin 

Ireland, c1760. Period of George III.


Excellent, age-related wear as shown.


Height: 17cm Bowl diameter: 3.9cm Foot diameter: 7.1cm.


140 grams

Technical Description 

An opaque twist cordial glass with a small round funnel bowl with a solid section at the base. Sits on a thick single series opaque twist stem consisting of a multiply corkscrew. Conical foot with a snapped pontil.

The bowl has been engraved with a flower rimed, blaze/diamond cut cartouche with a central harp and the words MALLOW INDEPENDENT VOLUNTEERS.

Points worth considering

18th century Volunteer glasses are rare things indeed and I can’t honestly say that in the past I've never had an example which I considered genuine, although I dare say they exist.


The Irish Volunteers were formed in 1778 and were local militias used to keep law and order and guard against invasion when the British soldiers were withdrawn from Ireland to fight in American Revolutionary war. The Mallow Independent Volunteers were formed around this time and there are a few online references covering the history and minutes of their meetings during this period.


The glass itself is most certainly 18th century dating to c1760-65. The thickness of the stem would indicate that it belonged to the ‘Irish’ form having an approx. 50% thicker stem than there so-called English counterparts.


This then leads us to the engravings and the question of their date…period or later?


As many glass collectors know and a subject written about many times, the gentleman Franz Tieze (1842-1932) an active engraver in Dublin in the late 19th century, was almost certainly responsible for the vast majority of Volunteer engravings on both period and later reproduction glasses. We have had many examples of Tieze workmanship over the years and we have included a picture of his workmanship on a glass we sold recently. So the obvious question becomes…is the engraving by Franz Teize? In my opinion, most certainly not, for the simple reason that the engraving style is not good enough to be Tieze. Although certainly not the best, his workmanship and lettering was of a high standard and for many years his work got past some of the world’s top museum curators. So based on comparison the engraving is not Tieze.


Are the engravings 18th century? A difficult question and perhaps not one with a definitive answer. The little leaves around the cartouche are quite delicate, as is the central harp. In comparison, the circular band of blaze/diamonds as well as the lettering is quite naïve initially leading one to suspect that perhaps two different engravers were involved. However, looking at the ‘strings’ on the harp and comparing to the blaze circular workmanship, it would seem, that they are by the same hand... The actual lettering itself is quite irregular as far as spacing and letter size accuracy is concerned as is some of the blaze work which runs outside the circle in small parts… which is unusual. Becoming proficient and passing an apprenticeship in glass engravings was a very long process and like any form of art, some were better than others.


From my own perspective, I can see nothing in the engravings or their style that would say they were ‘significantly’ later than the glass…they are later…perhaps 1782…1790…1800…I’m afraid it’s impossible to say. Are they late 19th century…I see no reason why they would be. They were certainly not placed on the glass to deceive and if they were, I would expect to see ‘quality’ workmanship.


In conclusion and in our opinion, the engravings are probably period but slightly later than the date of glass manufacture…

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