Founded in 1764 with the permission of Louis XV of France, Baccarat is an art glass manufacturer that has transcended eras and fashions. Over the years, Baccarat has produced just about every form of art glass and glassware imaginable. It may be most famous for its ornate paperweights, but it has also designed crystal and glass vases, perfume bottles, chandeliers, boxes, and other decorative objects.

Because of the French Revolution and the reign of Napoleon, Baccarat and other French glass manufacturers were a bit behind the rest of the world when it came to crystal. Early Baccarat productions were concentrated on stemware, windowpanes, and mirrors. In 1816, however, Baccarat got around to producing lead crystal and reformed its glassware factory nestled in tiny Baccarat, France, in the eastern Lorraine region, to become a crystal factory. The company used a blend of sand, potash, and lead to create crystal that quickly became a symbol of high-quality French decorative art.

In fact, just seven years after it began producing crystal, Baccarat was commissioned to create stemware for King Louis XVIII. Since then, the company has, on a variety of occasions, been hired to produce crystal for royalty and heads of state, whether it was stemware for Charles X and Franklin Roosevelt or vodka glasses for Czar Nicholas II. Not only was Baccarat's crystal gorgeous, it was also refractive, luminous, and heavy, thanks to its 32-percent lead content.

Baccarat expanded quickly, and it already had an overseas market in 1841 when it released its flat-sided Harcourt set—this signature Baccarat designs continues to be produced today. In 1846, the company began producing millefiori paperweights, whose interiors held captive everything from flowers to birds. Today collectors struggle to definitively date Baccarat paperweights from that era, as they are considered some of the greatest examples of the form ever made.

By 1855 Baccarat was an industry leader. At the Exposition Universelle in Paris that year, it was awarded the Grand Medal of Honor. In 1860, Baccarat added a brand signature to the bottom of every piece. This mark can be found on all vintage Baccarat glass made between 1860 and 1936.

The design of a particular Baccarat piece can usually be closely tied to the era when it was made. For example, Baccarat glass and crystal from the 1870s reflect the influence at the time of Japanese design. At the turn of the century, Baccarat produced curvy Art Nouveau glassware; in the 1920s, Baccarat glass featured geometric Art Deco cuts.

Aided by the development of a new workshop, the 20th century also brought a boom in the production of perfume bottles for Baccarat. In 1907, the company was producing more than 2...

Despite being more than two centuries old, Baccarat continues to innovate. In 1979 it released its Massena cut-crystal stemware and tumblers, and in 1993 Baccarat produced its first line of fine jewelry.

About our sources | Got something to add?

▼ Expand to read the full article ▼

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

This fabulous site is a guide to Bohemian art glass makers from 1885 to 1920. Loetz was the premier Bohemian glass … [read review or visit site]

Pattern Glass School

Pattern Glass School

If you need schooling on Victorian-era pressed glass tableware aka EAPG (Early American Pattern Glass) aka Pattern … [read review or visit site]

Cloud Glass Reference Site

Cloud Glass Reference Site

Chris and Val Stewart’s impressive attempt to create a complete catalogue of all known cloud glass, a decorative … [read review or visit site]

Antique Glass Salt and Sugar Shaker Club

Antique Glass Salt and Sugar Shaker Club

The heart of this website, home of the Antique Glass Salt and Sugar Shaker Club, is the Identification Project, whe… [read review or visit site]

Clubs & Associations

Discussion Forums

Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

Pair Of Baccarat Clear Crystal Candle Holders / Candlesticks France / Signed1971 Baccarat French Art Glass Lampwork Purple Dahlia Paperweight W/boxBaccarat France Art Glass Elephant Figure, Trunk Raised14 Very Fine Baccarat Harcourt Champagne / Tall Sherbet Stems GlassesSigned Baccarat France Crystal Black Art Glass Taurus Bull Sculpture PaperweightAntique Baccarat Millefiori Mushroom + Cobalt Torsade Glass Paperweight, C. 1850Antique Baccarat Crystal Fabr8 Fine Baccarat Harcourt Claret Wine Stems GlassesBaccarat Crystal Set (8) Dom Perignon Champagne Flutes 9 1/4" Signed No Reserve!Vintage Baccarat Clear Crystal Square Decanter - NrRare Baccarat Crystal Bamboo Chutes Art Deco Glass VaseVintage Baccarat Clear Crystal Decanter - Nr11 Baccarat France Gascogne Clear Wine Glasses / Water Goblet , 5.5" Baccarat France Art Glass Eagle With Wings Spread Sculpture FigurineStunning C. 1910 Baccarat Glass Decanter N/rBaccarat Crytal Tiger StunningVintage Baccarat Cyclades Swirl Twist Cut Crystal Flower VaseVintage Baccarat Clear Crystal Art Deco Style 4-pc Spectacular Sectional Vase NrLouis Xiii Remy Martin Grande Cognac Crystal Baccarat DecanterBaccarat Crystal X-large Gingko Vase (rare)Baccarat Crystal Cordon Argent Martell Cognac Decanter Signed, Original Stopper Louis Xiii Remy Martin Grande Cognac Baccart Bottle With Original Box & StoryBaccarat Small Wave Crystal Vase 9 Inches Tall In Original Box6 Fine Baccarat Harcourt Claret Wine Stems GlassesBaccarat Crystal Cat Statue Baccarat Crystal Nativity Singing Angel 6-1/2" W/labelBaccarat Parotts (pair)Beautifully Appointed Antique French Paperweight. Most Likely Baccarat.Baccarat Crystal Bird Baccarat Bird Figurine Mint In BoxRose Teine Baccarat Rose Amberina Depose France Swirl Powder Jar Box No Reserve Mint 3” Baccarat Crystal Rabbit Figurine / Paperweight - No Reserve Bc5Rare Baccarat France Art Glass Clear Crystal Angel Figurine Figure 6" Marked Baccarat Massina Crytal FlutesBaccarat Harmonie Champagne Server Fine French Crystal Ice BucketBaccarat Vega Picture Frame Holder New!Authentic Baccarat Red Crystal Glass Heart Motif NecklaceSpectacular Baccarat Closepacked Candy Stripe PaperweightBaccarat Crystal Ox Cow Nativity Scene 4x8" Oxen NibBaccarat Nativity Figurine Angel With Trumpet 6 1/4" In BoxRose Teine Baccarat Rose Amberina Depose France Swirl Vanity Pin Dresser Tray NrAntique Baccarat Crystal Gevaudan Vase. Circa Late 19th Century. 7 LbsA+ Vintage Baccarat Art Glass Paperweight W/ Jfk John F Kennedy Sulphide DesignBaccarat Crystal CupsBaccarat Ox Nativity - Retired - Authentic - Vintage With Original BoxBaccarat Sirius Crystal Ball 4"Antique Baccarat Crystal Leudeville Decanter. Circa Late 19th Century.Louis Xiii Baccarat Decanter Numbered, Mint In Box With Stopper, Gold Neck NrRare Vintage Baccarat Art Glass Paperweight W/ Winston Churchill Sulphide DesignBaccarat Crystal TumblerBaccarat Nativity Figurine Angel With Harp 6 1/2"Baccarat Crystal Glass Giraffe 7.5" By 1.5" Beautiful!!!!!!!!!!Rare Set Of 6 Signed Baccarat Rohan Pattern Juice Glasses Or Tumblers 3 7/8" Vintage Baccarat Clear Crystal Shamrock Paperweight - NrBaccarat Jean Boggio 10" Crystal Glass Figurine Figure Clown JesterBaccarat Nativity Cello Angel: Authentic, Rare, Retired! New Price 6.5"Bacarat DecanterBaccarat Crystal Angel Baccarat Angel Figurine Mint In BoxBaccarat Kneeling Nativity Angel Praying Retired #762576Baccarat Crystal CatBaccarat Crystal Vase 7" Tall