In spite of the fact that stained glass windows were invented almost 50 centuries ago, they are still popular nowadays and still are installed in many buildings and houses around the globe.
The art of creation of stained-glass windows became very popular in 12th century - was the rise of the Gothic cathedrals. It is interesting to know, that nowadays only 10% of stained glass windows are used in churches, cathedrals and other religious buildings. All the rest are installed in private residences and used as pieces of industrial architecture.
Stained glass windows were always at different levels of popularity throughout the centuries. The Golden age of stained-glass, however, is recognized between 12th and 13th centuries in Europe. And only during the Renaissance period - the the original stained glass parts were replaced by the painted glass. In the 18th century, the real stained glass windows became very rare.
We prepared in a few interesting facts that you may like to know about the stained glass windows.
- The first stained glass windows were to be found and the Christian churches around 400 B.C. People used to depict different scenes from the Bible, numerous religious events and simply the portraits of the Lord and his saints. The plots were always different but the idea stayed of the same for centuries: people put their beliefs into the glass and made pieces of art out of it.
- Stained glass windows were also used in the Catholic churches for the same purpose. By the way, why the crafters created the whole stories and plots from the Bible and put it inside of the glass windows? The answer is very simple - most of the people were not able to read at that time - so these panoramas made out of glass helped them to understand the general point off the Bible stories.
- In the times of Great reformations under Henry the VIII (the times when English church was founded) many churches and monasteries were ruined. This is why a lot of stained glass windows that could easily be considered to be masterpieces - did not survive till our days. More over - a lot of window makers under the threat of death refused to re-create them in future, although they had all the skills and necessary equipment to do that Did you know that the largest stained glass window created by humankind belongs to the Roman St. Mary’s Cathedral, located in the state of Kentucky? It's a very strange fact, because the technique of making the stained glass windows took its origin in the ancient Europe - centuries before the discovery of America. In anyways, this window depicts the Council of Ephesus. The size of this window is assumed to be 20 by 8 meters.
- The largest gathering of stained glass windows belongs to the Cathedral of the York Minster and counts 128 pieces. Created in 1408, this collection is regularly maintained and well preserved buy a trust, which name stays undisclosed. Nowadays the collection is insured for millions and millions of dollars.
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