Glass and antique Bohemian crystal has been a tradition for over 800 years. It was, and still is, made in what is today the Bohemian region of the Czech Republic. Early versions of the glass were called forest glass because of its green color and the predominance of woods in this region. Bohemian glass is considered by some to be the best glass in the world because of its beautiful jewel tones and brilliant cuts. The combination of high lead content and the raw materials used to create the glass - potash and quartz sand - make Bohemian glass a highly prized addition to the antique cut glass collection. Bohemian makers today still use the same designs that have been in production for hundreds of years, and there are no identifying marks to determine the age of a piece, so spotting a true antique is a bit difficult. Bohemian crystal is most commonly used for crystal glasses, stemware, pendants, earrings, chandeliers or necklaces.
Bohemian crystal can be used to make different objects like vases, candlesticks, flasks, or to adorn jewelry sparkle. To recognize if you are in possession of a Bohemian crystal, follow the indications below:
The meaning of crystal differs from country to country. In the western world, however, crystal is most often called glass with lead. If you come across the term lead-free crystal, it is simply not crystal. What we are talking about when we say Bohemian crystal, is glass made in the traditional Bohemian region with a lead content of at least 24%.
Crystal glasses, ornaments and pieces should not be washed in the dishwasher, as they may be damaged by high heat and harsh detergents and lose their luster. Here's how to wash them by hand to keep them in perfect condition: