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Gin

Georgian gin glasses from the 18th century are readily available in spite of their considerable age, and exist in such numbers simply because the spirit was so inordinately popular during the five decades up to 1750.  As a consequence of this obsessive and excessive consumption there were a large number of glasses in circulation from which the ruinous distillate could be taken, imbibed, swigged, quaffed or guzzled by its many devotees – a simple matter of supply meeting a not inconsiderable demand.

The spirit’s popularity stemmed - albeit indirectly - from the historical enmity between Britain and France, with the latter having been a significant source of the brandy which - throughout the course of the 17th century - had been the alcoholic solace of choice for English folk of pretty much any social standing. As the Grand Siècle entered its second half, however, the British government sought to deprive their Gallic foe of this particular revenue stream, preferring to extract money from the good people of these sceptered isles for their own ends. A number of legislative acts were drawn up, all of which had the intention of restricting the import of brandy whilst at the same time encouraging the production of English gin.

The spirit was already popular amongst the more august circles of English society as a result of the growing Dutch influence within our Royal family at the time, and the desire to affect similar preferences in order to appear in touch with very latest foibles of such illustrious folk. Gin had long been established as almost the national drink in The Netherlands, albeit under its original name of "jenever". This provenance gave rise to the fact that it was often referred to as Holland Gin or just "Hollands", as can be evidenced from the many engraved glasses or decanter labels which exist from the period.

As production of the home-grown spirit escalated at the behest of the government, so the price of the commodity crashed and London in particular was soon plunged into what was to become known as "The Gin Craze". The lower classes in particular become fervent and fevered consumers, with local authorities noting that gin was the principal cause of "all the vice and debauchery committed among the inferior sort of people". With the pernicious liquor rendering much of the capital’s working population incapable of pretty much anything of consequence, Government was prompted to implement an abrupt about-turn in an effort to minimise the inebriating effects of their Francophobic machinations. Retailers were required to obtain licenses, distillers similarly regulated and the product itself had ever more punitive taxes applied. However, rather predictably, the trade simply went underground to circumvent such penalties, which resulted in the illicit mashes becoming stronger, yet more debilitating and increasingly addictive and dangerous.

Eventually, after five decades of unparalleled drunkenness, another round of legislation began to take effect with more reasonably-priced licenses encouraging the growth of legitimate taxable outlets. As luck would have it, the livers of the nation were further spared by a succession of poor harvests, that pushed up the price of grain and hence of the gin itself, which became too expensive to allow the previously unfettered consumption to continue at its relentless and reckless pace.

However, the British taste for gin had by now been firmly etched in to the public consciousness, and it remained an extraordinarily popular liquor, requiring the manufacture of a great many glasses to satisfy its legions of consumers who were unable to break the habit and still willing to commit a decent proportion of their disposable income on obtaining it regardless of cost.

The gin glasses themselves tended to be conical and fairly simply presented. As with anything that had an appeal across the broader social spectrum, though, there were glasses intended for use by both the more discerning gentlemen and those of lesser status, so there are both lavishly decorated and utterly plain examples to be found ¬with all the conceivable intermediate incarnations amply catered for at the same time. We are left, therefore, with a varied order of glassware which has a broad and rather non-specific remit with regard to appearance, but which remains eminently collectable nonetheless given its place in the van of British social history.

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Regency Gin Glass c1830

Regency Gin Glass c1830

A regency gin glass which you will find amongst a wide range of other antique gin glasses on our scottishantiques.com online store.

£35.00

18th Century Engraved  Gin Glass c1780

18th Century Engraved Gin Glass c1780

This fine Georgian gin glass can be seen in detail at scottishantique.com online store where we specialise in rare antique drinking glasses from 17th to 20th century.

£30.00

Georgian Petal Moulded Gin Glass c1780

Georgian Petal Moulded Gin Glass c1780

A fine example of a Georgian petal moulded gin glass which you can see in finer detail on our online store scottishantiques.com, where you will find a wide range of rare and unusual antique drinking glasses.

£35.00

Georgian Engraved Gin Glass c1790

Georgian Engraved Gin Glass c1790

This fine 18th century engraved gin glass can be seen amongst a wide range of rare and unusual antique drinking glasses at scottishantiques.com online store.

£40.00

Georgian Petal Moulded Gin Glass c1780

Georgian Petal Moulded Gin Glass c1780

This excellent Georgian petal moulded gin glass can be found at scottishantiques.com online store, where you will find other fine examples of antique drinking glasses, as we are specialist in rare and unusual antique glassware

£45.00

Engraved Georgian Gin Glass c1760

Engraved Georgian Gin Glass c1760

This attractive 18th century engraved gin glass with its conical, folded foot and snapped pontil can be found on our scottishantiques online store. We are specialists in unusual and rare Victorian glassware and boast a wide range of drinking glasses on ou

£35.00

Engraved Georgian Gin Glass c1760

Engraved Georgian Gin Glass c1760

Enjoy the latest flavour in the third gin craze with a glass from the first in the 18th century

£55.00

A Georgian Gin Glass - c1800

A Georgian Gin Glass - c1800

A Georgian gin glass from c1800. Available from Scottish Antiques online store.

£22.00

An Engraved Georgian Gin Glass Folded Foot - c1820

An Engraved Georgian Gin Glass Folded Foot - c1820

A Georgian Gin Glass with folded foot from c1820. Available at Scottish Antiques online store.

£60.00

19th Century Gin Glass 1830-50

19th Century Gin Glass 1830-50

A Regency gin glass from 1830-60. Available from Scottish Antiques online store

£25.00

19th Century Gin Glass c1820

19th Century Gin Glass c1820

A Georgian gin glass . We are now in the third gin ctaze, try a glass form the first

£38.00

A Balustroid Gin Glass c1740

A Balustroid Gin Glass c1740

A glass from the first gin craze in the 18th century, to ne used in the third gin craze in the 21st century

£175.00

Engraved Georgian Balustroid Gin Or Cordial Glass c1760

Engraved Georgian Balustroid Gin Or Cordial Glass c1760

This is such a rare and unusual form that bringing this back to good display condition with a resin fill was the best option to retain the integrity of the glass

£185.00

Pair Engraved Georgian Balustroid Gin Or Cordial Glasses c1760

Pair Engraved Georgian Balustroid Gin Or Cordial Glasses c1760

See more 18th century Georgian wine glasses, tankards , tumblers and table glass at the Scottish antique store online

£370.00

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