A rectangular Venetian mirror in a gilded wooden frame, richly adorned with four cartouches with mirror glass and floral rocaille.
The discovery of the glass mirror was a true revolution in the applied arts. Exactly when and where the technique was invented is unknown, but it was Venice that became famous during the 16th century for its glassworks using this new process. On the Venetian island of Murano, it offered new opportunities for the master glassblower’s production. The technique was considered a quintessentially Venetian invention and the masters tried to keep the procedure a secret. The emergence of new trade routes later in the 16th century triggered the decline of Venice. As a result, the mirror craftsmen eventually left the city with their expertise and the secret technique spread throughout Europe. Despite this development, production continued in Venice, yielding large quantities of mirrors, of which our mirror is a typical example.