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Bohemian crystal is a national treasure

Bohemian crystal is a national treasure of the Czech Republic. It is impeccably transparent, has an unsurpassed quality. The tradition of glassmaking in the Czech Republic has never been interrupted, which has given it the right to set the tone for the art of glassworking around the world. As in ancient times, today Czech glass is processed with diamond tools, a play of light is created with the addition of copper, manganese, iron, decorated with silver, gold, and precious stones. Aleks-Crystal.com — bohemia cut crystal E-shop.

History of Bohemian glass

The land on which the Czech Republic is now located was formerly called Bohemia. Archaeologists claim that glass-blowing skills appeared here as early as the 9th century. Then there were very few glass blowers and glass carvers, and therefore only the rich and the nobility had crystal and glass products. But in the XII century, the active development of the Bohemian glass industry begins, and by the XIV century, every tradesman can afford glass objects in the Czech Republic.

Natural crystal is a rare mineral that the ancient Greeks and Romans masterfully knew how to handle. The Czechs managed to create artificial crystal by adding barium and lead to glass. The jeweler of Emperor Rudolf II, the Czech Kaspar Leman, applied the ancient Roman technique of carving on crystal — and glorified Czech glass all over the world. Leman’s uniquely fine engraving made the glass look like a diamond and fascinated connoisseurs of beauty for many centuries. The beauty of Czech glass products, their wide range of colors and quality surpassed the popular Venetian glass, and then English.

Czech glass has always been famous for its special transparency: the fact is that the sands in Bohemia contain a minimum amount of iron oxides. However, it would be wrong to explain the success of Czech glassmaking only with a large amount of good raw materials. Many dynasties of glassmakers lived on the territory of the Czech Republic. The secret of glass making was passed down from father to son. It was the Czech dynasties that developed glassmaking technology and spread it throughout Europe. Interestingly, the Austrian brand Swarovski was created by hereditary glassblower Daniel Swarovski, who was born in Bohemia.

Today in the Czech Republic, the ancient traditions of the production of crystal and smooth glass, which can be engraved, ground or painted, are alive. Many operations are still performed manually. Czech glass is becoming a highlight of lamps from the world’s best manufacturers.

Lamps for kings

The first Czech crystal chandelier was born in 1724 thanks to the master Josef Malmö. Such chandeliers were made for the royal chambers, including the residences of Maria Theresa, Queen Elizabeth, Louis XIV. Crystal chandeliers are still an obligatory attribute in palace halls in the Czech Republic: Bohemian glass can serve for centuries, becoming more and more attractive over time.

Today, Czech crystal lamps are available to everyone. Lasvit products demonstrate a brilliant combination of modern ideas and ancient techniques. Even Schonbek, a leading player in the design and manufacture of crystal chandeliers, owes its existence to the secrets of the Czech glassblower Adolf Schonbek.

A bohemian crystal lamp will always catch the eye. The light in it seems to explode with millions of «rainbows», sparkles and gives a luxurious shine. However, few people know that the amazing play of light in a chandelier depends on the amount of lead oxide in the crystal.

Bohemian crystal: the secrets of authenticity

  • The crystal details of the chandelier must be transparent, free of bubbles, scratches, streaks and other defects. They should radiate a rainbow of light. If you see only a monotonous shine, you have a glass product in front of you.
  • Real crystal «sings» wonderfully. Rub the crystal suspension with a wet finger or lightly tap it with a hard object — and it will give you a melodic long ringing. The glass will only make a dry clatter.
  • Hold the crystal element in your hand: real crystal remains cool for a very long time, while glass heats up quickly.
  • Never buy crystal products in the markets or in stores with a dubious reputation. It is better to deal with branded salons and stores where qualified sellers guarantee you the quality of the goods.

Bohemian crystal is not just an exquisite interior decoration and a sign of good taste. Buying a chandelier is an investment in a beautiful item that has centuries of tradition.