Although “Mary Gregory” glass was first made before 1880, that name was not applied until the 1920s. Later research showed much of it was probably made in Bohemia, but the name of Mary Alice Gregory, an American glass decorator, stuck. Mostly mouth-blown, its distinguishing feature is white enamel painting fired onto the glass, which is why it is also known as “painted cameo” glass. In addition to children and romantic scenes, feathery trees and foliage were typical decoration. Cranberry, a characteristic colour, required the use of gold, which carried added significance: gold symbolises pure light, divine energy, marriage, faith and fruitfulness. Maurice Lemay, a highly knowledgeable Sherbrooke antique dealer and collector, bequeathed this cranberry glass to the Stanstead Historical Society.
Although “Mary Gregory” glass was first made before 1880, that name was not applied until the 1920s. Later research showed much of it was probably made in Bohemia, but the name of Mary Alice Gregory, an American glass decorator, stuck. Mostly mouth-blown, its distinguishing feature is white enamel painting fired onto the glass, which is why it is also known as “painted cameo” glass. In addition to children and romantic scenes, feathery trees and foliage were typical decoration. Cranberry, a characteristic colour, required the use of gold, which carried added significance: gold symbolises pure light, divine energy, marriage, faith and fruitfulness. Maurice Lemay, a highly knowledgeable Sherbrooke antique dealer and collector, bequeathed this cranberry glass to the Stanstead Historical Society.

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Lovers' Meeting

This urn-shape vase is typical of Victorian mouth-blown cranberry glass. The male and female figures are in the rococo style.

Photo Credit:Sylvain Lessard

Mouth-blown cranberry glass
25 x 12.5 cm
1993.2.9.
© Musée Colby-Curtis-Société historique de Stanstead.


Learning Objectives

The learner will:

  • Explain how symbolism is used to represent romantic emotions in Valentine’s greetings
  • Describe the types of symbols traditionally used to represent feelings of love and affection

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