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”)

Loetz.com

Loetz.com

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    

Pristine Set Of 6 Baccarat Massena Fluted Champagne Glasses 8 1/2"4 Baccarat Harmonie #1 Tumblers Fine French Crystal Glasses Signed Excellent6 Baccarat Harmonie #2 Dof Tumblers Fine French Crystal Glasses Signed ExcellentSigned Baccarat France Crystal Clear Art Glass Frog Toad Sculpture Paperweight Baccarat France Black Crystal Rabbit Bunny Figurine Paperweight Signed In BoxVintage Antique Baccarat France Art Glass Millefiore Cane Paperweight 1974 SigndBaccarat Stemware 2 Champagne Flutes Signed - Massena 8 1/2" (lotb)Antique 19th C French Baccarat Enamelled Opaline Glass Vase Superb Like MoserBaccarat Crystal Stemware 2 Water Goblets - Massena 7 1/4"Baccarat Whisky Decanter W/ Stopper French Crystal Signed Baccarat Crystal "toucan" Bird FigurineBaccarat France Clear Studio Art Glass Puffed Heart Paperweight In Original BoxSigned Baccarat Clear Crystal Art Glass Star Flower Desk Library Paperweight NrBaccarat Crystal Clear Reclining Stretched Nude Woman Figurine Signed Rigot Baccarat Cut Glass Nancy Decanter W/ Prismatic Stopper French Crystal Signed Baccarat Square Whisky Decanter W/ Square Stopper French Crystal Signed+sticker 2 Signed Baccarat France Sparta Clear Crystal Individual Glass Cigarette AshtrayAntique Baccarat Crystal Arcachon Decanter. Circa Late 19th Century. 7 Lbs.Baccarat ButterflyBaccarat France Art Glass Crystal Unicorn FigurineBaccarat Stemware 2 Claret Wine Glasses Signed - Massena 6 1/2" (lot B)Antique Moser Baccarat Blue Opaline Glass Vase Enameled Bird & FlowersPair Of Baccarat Harmonie Double Old Fashion #2 Tumblers. Excellent Condition!Signed Baccarat France Augusta Golfer Lead Crystal Retired Art Glass Sculpture Fine Pair Of 10'' Baccarat Vases, Baccarat Crystal, Scottsdale, Az. Estate ItemBaccarat Crystal "paris Cut Flower Vase" (7 7/8" Tall)6 Baccarat Crystal Harmonie Highball / Water Glasses 5 1/2"Baccarat Harmonie Clear Cut Art Glass Crystal 8 Inch Handled Pitcher FranceSet Of 4 Baccarat Harmonie TumblersBaccarat Harmonie Clear Cut Crystal Stainless Steel Handled 5 Inch Ice BucketVintage Set Of 5 Baccarat Crystal France 5 1/2" Wine Water Glasses GobletsBaccarat French Crystal Green Art Glass Parrot Bird Figurine-signedBaccarat Crystal Mille Nuits StemwareBaccarat Crystal Zodiaque Horse * Benefits Central Va Horse Rescue * No ReserveBaccarat Green Christmas Tree With StarMagnificent Vintage Baccarat Crystal Glass Covered Missouri Jam JarCrystal Owl Signed Baccarat France Sculptural Bird Figurine PaperweightBaccarat Frog Fine French Crystal Paperweight Signed Glass SculptureAntique C1900 Saint Louis Cobalt Blue Cut To Clear Crystal Decanter Fine Baccarat France Crystal Pointer Retriever Hunting Dog FigurineLot Of 5 Crystal Figurines-lalique, Steuben, Baccarat-as IsBaccarat France Crystal Sulfide Paperweight Ronald Reagan Franklin MintBaccarat Dolphin Fine French Crystal Paperweight Signed Glass SculptureBaccarat Crystal Polar Bear FigurineBaccarat Unicorn Fine French Crystal Paperweight Signed Glass SculptureBaccarat Squirrel Fine French Crystal Paperweight Signed Glass SculptureBaccarat Crystal Clear Doberman Pinser German Shepherd Dog FigurineRare C1920 Baccarat Crystal Buddha Perfume Bottle Nr!Lot Of 5 Baccarat Clear Crystal St. Remy 8.5 In Champagne Flutes Made In FranceBaccarat French Crystal Covered Mustard Pot / Jam / Honey Jar Marked Great ShapeBaccarat ButterflyBaccarat Crystal Giraffe Figurine Paperweight, Gift!Baccarat Crystal Warthog, Wild Boar Art Glass Figurine, Signed, FranceBaccarat Parrot Fine French Crystal Paperweight Signed Glass SculptureOriginal Baccarat Crystal Harmonie Round Decanter Baccarat ButterflyBaccarat Crystal Pelican Figurine Paperweight Excellent Condition, SignedLarge Baccarat Art Deco Shape Leaping Deer / StagBaccarat Puffy Heart Crystal Paperweight In Original Box With PapersTwo Fine Baccarat Crystal Bowls Great Condition