RE: Glass

From: Bernuetz, Oliver: WPG (
Date: Wed 11 Feb 1998 - 19:31:30 EET

Richard Develyn asked:

>What is the state of play with glass in Glorantha. Does the technology

>1) glass ornaments and bottles
>2) "bottle-glass" windows
>3) clear glass
>4) flat glass windows
>5) flat mirrors
>6) sextants (using tiny flat highly accurate mirrors)

>7) re-inforced windows

>How widespread is it?

>The earth parallel, BTW, was that flat clear glass did not appear until
>1670 or so, the first sextants (sp?) were 1740. Are dwarves interested
>in glass?

I'd say that many places would be capable of glass processing.
The ability to make glass dates back to around 2000 BC in the RW
while blowing bottles dates back to the 1st century BC. Any technique
that dates to the period BC would probably exist in regions like the
Lunar Empire, Esrolia, Kralorela, parts of the Eastern Isles, the northern
parts of Pamaltea and among the Mostali. Other early techniques
included carving solid glass, casting glass in molds, fusing bands of
glass together and the core technique where a core of dung and clay
was dipped in molten glass and the glass then shaped around the
core. After the object was finished the core was picked out and you
had a small container. All of these techniques would produce luxury
objects. The 1st century AD saw colorless glass replace colored
glass as the most popular form in the Roman Empire.

Blowing glass, especially in molds saw prices go down so glass
became cheaper and more common. I would imagine this would
only be true in the Lunar Empire and Kralorela.

The West would probably have stained glass windows in their
cathedrals as the RW dates for those are anywhere from the 6th
century AD to the 13th-14th centuries (when the best windows
were considered to have been done). All those periods are
probably analagous to Western Glorantha.

I doubt sextants and re-inforced glass exist.

As far as the Mostali go I'd imagine they can produce pretty
good utilitarian containers from glass. I doubt they're interested in
windows though. They might even be able to produce reinforced
glass to use in alchemy.

Glass mirrors only exist in the West in a fairly crude form and among
the Mostali who can even make curved mirrors. Everyone else has
to rely on polished metal or magically stilled pools of quicksilver if
you belong to a sea cult.

The source of the above was Microsoft's Encarta which has a nice
little potted history of glass making.

There's some additional information to be found at the Corning
Museum of Glass site at:

Oliver D. Bernuetz
"The most beautiful glassware I have ever had the priviliege to see
were the sacred objects created by the Lodrili priests to glorify
their God. Every shape and colour imaginable of glassware was
there on the high altar. The shapes were so delicate and fantastic!
Strong men were reduced to tears and women to hysterics when the
priests smashed the objects at the height of the ceremonies as a
sacrifice to their God. Any one of them would have been worth an
entire coffle of the most beautiful pleasure slaves or a wagon load of

The entire cult has a monopoly on glass production within the
Empire and each crafts-priest dedicates his life to producing a
piece worthy of being smashed on the high altar. Many of the
priests die without ever having attained this feat.

Some say the glassware produced by the priestesses and priests
of Caladra and Aurelion is just as wonderful but my tastes do not
lean towards gloomy black glassware as the only material they
work with is their sacred obsidian."

>From Fresser's Gourmet Guide to Glorantha


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