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Classification: Glass

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Image of Cream Pitcher

Unknown Maker, American
American

Cream Pitcher

about 1880

Object Type: Glass
Creation Place: North America, American
Dimensions:
5 3/8 in. x 5 3/4 in. x Diam: 3 3/8 in. (13.65 cm x 14.61 cm x 8.57 cm)
Medium and Support: Pressed glass
Accession Number: 1930.0011

Credit Line: Gift of Dr. Isaac Monroe Cline

Currently On View


This translucent blue glass cream pitcher from the late nineteenth century was produced at an exciting time in the American glass industry. The Victorian era (about 1840 to 1900) was a time of rigid codes of behavior and opulence in design. The excess of a middle-class family’s income was routinely spent on objects for the home, as it was a major indicator of social status. The conventions of dining, from service at table to the tableware itself, was of particular importance.

The pitcher, cast in a four-part mold, is distinguished by its rich blue color; at this period yellow, ruby, or amber were the most common colors of pressed glass. In the latter part of the nineteenth century more decorative (and less functional) glass, known as art glass, gained in popularity, and this piece may signal a shift in taste toward the bright, deep coloration associated with art glass.

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