Opaline glass is a decorative style of
glass made in France from 1800 to the
1890s, though it reached its peak of
popularity during the reign of Napoleon
III in the 1850s and 1860s.
The glass is opaque or slightly
translucent, and can appear either
white or brightly colored in shades of
green, blue, pink, black, lavender and
The glass has a high lead content which
defined it as "demi-crystal" or semi-
crystal. The primary influences on this
style of glass were 16th century
Venetian milk glass, and English white
glass produced in 18th century Bristol.
Many different pieces were produced in
opaline glass and cities involved in the
production included Le Creusot,
Baccarat, and Saint-Louis, Réunion, as
well as various locations in England.
All opaline glass is hand-blown, without
any seams nor any machine engraving.
Many pieces of opaline glass are
decorated with gilding, some with hand-
painted floral motifs or birds, whereas
several have bronze ormolu mounts,
rims, hinges or holders.
The pair is delicately and intricately
hand decorated by enamel and gilded
floral arabesques in various shades of