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OBJECT OF THE MONTH – January 2009

Wine Carafe

Wine Carafe
Wine Carafe, inv. no. 179.275
Cut and gilt glass, Bohemia, nineteenth century.
Height 260 mm

This carafe was once part of a drinks set that was used for the ritual of toasting with wine on the Sabbath. The other glasses, which were probably decorated in the same way, have not been preserved. The item is an example of high-quality glassmaking and glass cutting from about the mid-nineteenth century. The body has inscriptions in two large gilt medallions – the first contains four lines of Hebrew: “To the health of R. Meir and his wife Pesl, [long] may they live”, the second has the monogram “M.W.R.” in Roman characters. Of particular interest is the first inscription; its clumsy composition yet clear script suggest that it is probably the work of a Jewish scribe rather than a professional glass painter.
This carafe is one of the museum’s recent acquisitions, having been purchased in March 2008.


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