Last Updated: Nov 19, 2016     Views: 24

Glass is made by melting a combination of raw materials in very high heat and then cooling the soft material created in this process, called annealing, so that it can be shaped or formed into a vast variety of useful and beautiful objects. The raw materials used to create glass include sand (silica), potash (sodium carbonate or soda ash) and lime (calcium oxide), or different combinations of these ingredients. Many recipes for glass have been created since its origins in ancient Mesopotamia, with new developments continuing to this day. Colored glass was first made in ancient Egypt by artisans who added bits of metals or minerals to the basic ingredients. 

The Rakow Research Library has many encyclopedias, books, articles and visual media about glass-making as it has evolved across the world, which you would be welcome to use here on the premises. The Hot Glass Show is a live demonstration by master glassblowers, who can answer questions as you watch them work. For information available to you online, please check the "What is Glass?" link on our website at There you will find online resources, including a glass dictionary, videos, podcasts and audio guides and a timeline of glass history. 


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