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L'Arte Vetraria The Art of Glass by Antonio Neri, Vol. I Translated & Annotated by Paul Engle

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This is one of a three volume English translation of the acclaimed Renaissance glassmaking treatise. In the spring of 1612, a 36-year-old Italian priest published a book that is now perhaps the most famous in the history of glassmaking. The priest was Antonio Neri, and the book is L'Arte Vetraria, or The Art of Glass. The son of a physician, and ordained in the Catholic Church, Neri was an accomplished herbalist, alchemist, and a skilled glassmaker. His little book would find its way into numerous languages, and would become the bible of glassmaking throughout Europe for more than two centuries. Neri's recipes expose the coveted secrets of Venetian style glass. They show clearly how raw materials were refined, processed, and melted in the furnace to form a rainbow variety of colors. Now largely relegated to the shelves of rare book collectors, and to the footnotes of scholarly papers, Priest Neri's passion, and brilliance are in danger of being forgotten. This is the first fresh English language translation of the book since the mid 1600s. Each passage is thoroughly researched, each term is carefully explained, and each page of the original Italian is inset alongside Engle s translation, reproduced exactly as it appeared in the first edition. In the first of three volumes, Paul Engle presents a carefully researched translation of the first 36 chapters of L'Arte Vetraria. Through it, we can get a sense of apprenticeship with a master craftsman schooled in the coveted Venetian glassmaking techniques of the late sixteenth century. Neri's vitality and enthusiasm for his work reaches out and connects us to the world of a Renaissance Italian artisan; his passion and excitement for the beauty of glass shines through, and reminds us of the common bonds all artists have shared throughout human history. The cover shows the main entrance to the Medici Casino di San Marco; the building where Neri started his glassmaking career in early seventeenth century Florence.

114 pages, Perfect Paperback

First published January 1, 2003

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Paul Engle

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