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CLARET JUGS

As with the metal topped decanters the purely glass ones cover a lot of ground. As a whole claret jugs were always more rare than decanters and with glass ones there is the risk that handles get broken. I would advise against buying a claret jug with a broken handle unless it is incredibly cheap.

You will see jug handles being described as applied top to bottom and bottom to top. In the UK in Georgian times it was the fashion to make jug handles by taking a strip of hot glass and attaching near what will be the back lip of the jug and bending the strip around and attaching the flat side of the strip to a lower part of the jug, occasionally with a flourish of a little tail of some sort. In Victorian times this changed and jug handles tended to be made with a blob of hot glass attached low on the back of the jug and then stretched out to form the handle. This was then curled around and attached at the top of the jug to form the handle.

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Claret Jugs

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Description, References and Size

This is a shaft and globe shaped Victorian claret jug with a flat foot with radiating cutting, a plain body, slice cut neck and tricorn pouring lip. The handle is plain and applied bottom to top. The stopper is plain blown ovoid. Made c.1890

This is a simple quality made claret jug, in that classic Victorian shape, shaft and globe. The plainness of this claret jug declares it to be part of the movement that proposed that excessive cutting was vulgar, inartistic and detracts from the nature of glass. It's amazing how people can get so wrapped up in artistic movements.

Reference: Great British Wine Accessories 1550-1900, Robin Butler, page 168

Height: 12 inches

Width: 4 inches

This is a flask shaped Victorian claret jug with a slightly flattened body, short shallow vertical v-grooves cut to the lower body and strawberry hobnails cut in a thick band around the upper body and a slice cut neck. The handle is applied bottom to top and the stopper is a solid faceted ball. Made late 19th century.

This is not an elegant claret jug, however with the level and quality of cutting would have been an expensive item. At the time this was made heavily cut glass was going out of fashion and this may have been considered a bit old fashioned.

Reference: The Decanter, Andy McConnell, page 349 & 350 & 423

Height: 10 inches

Width: 7 inches

This is a flask shaped pale blue claret jug with a slightly flattened body, shallow vertical v-grooves on each side of the body. The stopper is a solid ball with grooves to match the body. Made 20th century.

This is a really nice claret jug but I haven't been able to find out much about it. I am going with 20th century based on design and quality.

Reference: The Decanter, Andy McConnell, page 349 & 350 & 423

Height: 10 inches

Width: 7 inches

This is a flask shaped Victorian Miser's claret jug with a slightly flattened body, a sloping neck collar and the handle has been extruded with grooves. The stopper is a blown ball. Made late 1874-1910.

This is a Miser's claret jug because any drips are caught by the sloping collar and at the back of the neck is a small hole to put those drips back in the bottle. Catching all the drips in this fashion seems a particularly tight thing to do. This is patented design, and was registered 20th May 1874.

You will see many jugs like this and some will have neck collars, but if the neck collar slops have a look at the bottom of the slope for this point of interest.

In 1902, in the Army and Navy Stores a jug like this would have cost four shilings and nine pennies. Ironically (or not, as the case may be) it was the cheapest claret jug on the page of the Army and Navy Stores catalogue.

Reference: Great British Wine Accessories 1550-1900, Robin Butler, page 168

Reference: Edwardian Shopping, R H Langbridge, chapter 1902

Height: 10 inches

Width: 7 inches

This is a French tea pot shaped decanter with green over plain cased glass with vertical panels cut through the green into the clear. It has a short pouring spout pointing out at roughly 45% with an applied handle that loops over the top. Made by St. Louis, Munzthal, Lorraine, circa, 1925-30.

This is the best quality French decanter I own. I have also put this in the claret jugs section as it is so weird, but does have a handle, which in my book makes it a jug. The stopper fits nice and tightly, and using this would be quite cool as you could pour out your guests drinks like cups of tea.

Reference: The Decanter Ancient to Modern, Andy McConnell, Page 355.

Height: 6.5 inches

Width: 7 inches

This is a Prussian shaped Edwardian claret jug by Edinburgh and Leith made in the style of Regency glass. It has step cutting around the base with hobnails around the middle and shoulders and three facet cut neck rings. The stopper is a mushroom with a star cut flat top and hobnails cut around the periphery. The handle is applied top to bottom in the Georgian manner and has a notch at the top to assist grip. Made c.1900

From approximately 1900-40 there was a fashion for make copies of Georgian/Regency drinking ware, including decanters and claret jugs like this one. They are not fakes as the glass quality and manufacture is of a higher standard and does not try to exactly reproduce the quality of the original. If they are too nicely made to be believed they are probably a copy. Note the handle has been applied from top to bottom as they would have been done in Georgian times.

Reference: The Decanter, page 493 Reproductions and Fakes.

Height: 10.5 inches

Width: 5 inches

This is an elongated pyramid shaped claret jug. It has a scrolling handle with rigaree applications to it. It is clear glass to which gold leaf have been applied, encased, then blown to give a random speckled gold effect. The stopper is hollow blown, the peg not ground to fit, and mirroring the shape of the body of the decanter with a prunt applied to the top. Made by Salviati of Murano, circa 1880-1920.

This claret jug has been made in the style of Venetian renaissance glass. It is very frilly and pretty but totally impractical as a claret jug. The glass is paper thin and I doubt the gold leaf embedded in it does anything for its structural strength either. Just for looks.

Reference: The Decanter Ancient to Modern, Andy McConnell, page 293

Height: 11 inches

Width: 5 inches

This is a donut shaped footed claret jug with a wrythen body and neck, applied rigaree to the circumfrance and prunt in the middle. The stopper is a flattened wrythen teardrop shape with a applied rigaree to the circumfrance and prunt in the middle. Made c.1880-1910.

I suspect this was made be John Walsh Walsh, and if it was I would put is nearer the later end of the date window I have given, as they were a follower on this type of thing.

Theoretically this is a claret jug, but it's massively impractical, so I think it is just for looks. Side on it looks quite big, but it is so narrow, you could probably only get half a bottle in it. And how would you clean around that bend too?

Height: 12.75 inches

Width: 6 inches

This is a cylinder shaped Victorian claret jug beautifully and profusely cut in the rock crystal manner with floral motifs, swags and diamonds. The stopper is cut similarly. Made c.1880-1900

This is a super quality claret jug made by someone good, like Stevens and Williams or Thomas Webb. Judging by the shape this is more of a whiskey flask than a claret jug, but it has a handle and stopper and that makes it a claret jug in my book.

Height: 10.5 inches

Width: 4.5 inches

This is an inverted thistle shaped rib molded claret jug with script Whiskey cut into the upper half of the body. There is a rib molded blown ball stopper. Made by Stevens and Williams circa 1900.

The word Whiskey is not very clear in this photograph and it is difficult to read in real life too. There are versions of this jug on coloured cased glass where the word is cut through coloured glass into clear glass and this is much more successful.

Although this is a lovely jug, I don't think it was a successful design, in that the quite chunky stopper fits tightly into the thin rim of the pouring lip. As this is meant to be for Whiskey that doesn't seem a very robust solution and I expect these were destroyed the people using them by the dozen.

I have seen this design in an old Stevens and Williams advertisement, so I am certain of this attribution. In the advertisment the rib molding is called Venetian flute and the jugs this shape are called 'Thistle' jugs.

Height: 11 inches

Width: 4.5 inches

This is a small purple Alsterfors claret jug with a horizontally ribbed body. Designed by Edwin Ollers in the 1930s.

This is a lovely little jug and is probably intended for holding spirits. I would like to thank Yvonne Brandt who sold me this jug unattributed but later sent me a reference.

I have called this a claret jug as it fits my definition of a claret, i.e. a jug with a lid, however, from what I have been reading these small Scandinavian jugs and decanters are really intended for spirits.

Height: 10 inches

Width: 3.5 inches

This is an amber claret jug with a vertically wavey ribbed body and leaf shaped stopper with pressed veins. Swedish circa. 1920s.

In the 1920s in Sweden it was the vogue to make what they call Venetian style glass, of which this is an example. When you compare it to a Venetian manufacturer like Salviati you can see what they are getting at but it was entirely their interpretation of that style.

Height: 12.75 inches

Width: 4.5 inches

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