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Classification: Glass

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Image of Tankard Pitcher

Smith Brothers (aka Alfred and Harry Smith)
American, born 1878

Tankard Pitcher

about 1887

Object Type: Glass
Dimensions:
11 3/4 in. x 5 3/4 in. x Diam: 4 in. (29.85 cm x 14.61 cm x 10.16 cm)
Medium and Support: Mold-blown glass
Accession Number: 2008.0002

Credit Line: Gift of Mr. and Mrs. James Lucien Loeb in memory of Helen Weil Loeb

Currently On View


The Smith Brothers firm made this pitcher, also called a champagne jug, during the late Victorian period. This was also the height of the Temperance Movement in America. The movement encouraged abstinence from alcoholic beverages, and thus this pitcher would not have been used for spirits, but for "Punch," that is, diluted wine or a cordial drink that had been weakened by milk or a fruit base. Such beverages were typically served at ladies’ luncheons or receptions.
Colored pitchers and glassware were popular for these events because of their feminine delicacy. The floral designs of ivy and columbine on the pitcher were inspired by the Aesthetic Movement of the late 1800s, an art movement originating in Europe that was influenced by simple nature scenes and designs originally found in Japanese art.

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