Glassmaking in Ireland: From the Medieval to the Contemporary


John M. Hearne

The first book to examine the full range of glassmaking in Ireland from the medieval period. Over 80 illustrations, many in colour. Asserts the rightful place for glass as the second most recognisable product of Ireland – outside of Guinness.

ISBN: 9780716531067 Categories: ,


A treasure-trove of fascinating information for the scholar, collector and enthusiast alike. In this, the first comprehensive survey of glassmaking in Ireland, the evolution of the industry from the sixteenth through to the twenty-first century is chronicled, and the impact of technological innovation and human invention examined. Adopting a multidisciplinary approach, the contributors use archaeological, architectural, artistic, historical, economic and pictorial evidence, along with the results of new research, to present an illuminating and fascinating account of glassmaking in Ireland that is accessible to the academic and general reader alike.

Among the many topics covered are the origins of Waterford glass and its re-emergence in the 20th Century, the invention of lead crystal glass, the origins of studio and contemporary glass in Ireland and how advanced Irish glass making was compared to English glassmaking of the period.

Table of Contents

Forward Cormac O’Grada
Introducation ~ Patrick F. Wallace
1 Irish glass in it European context ~ Hugh Willmott (University of Sheffield, England)
2 Medieval window glass; the Irish problem ~ Josephine Moran (freelance archaeologist)
3   Seventeenth-century Irish flat glass: its makers and its markets ~ Nessa Roche  (architectural conservation advisor)
4   From sand and ash – glassmaking in early seventeenth-century Ireland ~ Jean Farrelly  (archaeologist, Archaeological Survey of Ireland)
5 The archaeological evidence for John Odacio Formica’s glasshouse at Haymarket, Dublin 7, 1675-1696 ~ Franc Myles  (archaeologist)
6  The glass industry in the north of Ireland, 1750-1914 ~ John Cockerill  (former lecturer, Belfast Inst. Of Further and Higher Education)
7  Cork City glassworks 1782-1841 ~ Colin Rynne  (University College, Cork)
8   Penrose, Hill and Gatchell:  Irish enterprise, English alchemy and the creation of a brand.  The Waterford glassworks, 1783-1823 ~ John M. Hearne  (researcher, Waterford Inst. Of Technology)
9  The Waterford chandelier 1786: ‘An elegant lustre of the Waterford manufactory’ ~ Donnchadh O’ Ceallachain  (curator, Waterford Museum of Treasures)
10  Technology and innovation:  the architect C.R. Cockerell’s sketch of the Waterford glasshouse in 1823 and perspectives on the production of glass in early nineteenth-century Ireland ~ Anna Moran  (NCAD)
11  The Pugh Glasshouse in Dublin ~ Mary Boydell 
12  Recently Discovered signatures on glass from the Pugh Glassworks in Dublin.
13Harry Clarke, the artists of An Tur Gloine and the early twentieth-century Irish stained glass revival ~   Nicola Gordon Bowe  (NCAD and University of Ulster, Belfast)
14  The revival of Waterford Glass and its industrial design, 1947-1965 ~ Audrey Whitty & Tina Hunt  (National Museum of Ireland and Waterford College of Further Education, respectively)
15   ‘A mouth full of zephyrs’: the studio glass movement in Ireland, 1973-2003 ~ Joseph McBrinn  (University of Ulster, Belfast).

About the Editor

John M. Hearne is a graduate of University College Cork. He co-editor of Thomas Francis Meagher: The Making of an Irish American, published by Irish Academic Press. Dr Hearne has published widely, and is a visiting lecturer and editorial board member at Winthrop University, South Carolina. He is currently senior researcher in the Biographical Research Centre at Waterford Institute of Technology, and teaches History and Economics at St Paul’s Community College, Waterford City.