Baccarat Horse - Rare Picture Paperweights
Eighth Wonder of the Baccarat World?

Rare Baccarat Horse Weight



This article is provided as a reference source for anyone with an interest in the rare type of antique Baccarat paperweight pictured above. This particular example was sold, with no reserve price, on March 3, 2001 through the online eBay auction site, for A $20,229 (approx. US $10,566; UK 7,315).

Within the text there is a comprehensive table giving the chronology of recordings of such items, together with a fully detailed list of references. Various computer-enhanced sketches are given as an alternative to copies of photographs. This method of illustration has allowed rapid production of the article, which may otherwise have been delayed through the process of securing reproduction permissions.

In addition to the purely objective view, the article includes commentary from the seller, an unsuccessful bidder, and the eventual, happy buyer of the latest in this line of rarities.

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Credits, Acknowledgements & Copyright

For agreement to the production of this article:

For assistance with research and references:

All photographs of the item auctioned by "The Seller" (either as per originals or as modified by KevH) are included with the permission of "The Seller".

All photographs and illustrations, other than those provided by "The Seller", are by KevH.

Copyright © 2001, all rights reserved:

"The Buyer" is happy to receive requests for discussion about this Baccarat weight from serious paperweight collectors. Contact should be made, in the first instance, via KevH.

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The eBay Entry

On February 21st 2001, at 19:51:29 Pacific Standard Time, an entry was made to the eBay online auction site. The following description was provided:


In addition, an image was included with just enough details to enable viewers to determine the nature of the item. An offer of further images upon request was also given.

The finish of the auction was set as March 3rd 2001, 19:51:29 Pacific Standard Time.

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A Bidder's Tale

This is where I own up to being a bit nosey!

I had been communicating, via email, with another paperweight collector for some time. In the weeks preceding this particular auction, we had discussed various paperweight offerings within the online auction systems. As a result of these "e-conversations", as a matter of course, I began to keep an eye open for any items that my friend was interested in. Then, one day, I noticed an interest in an item headed, "Horse Portrait Paperweight". Nothing special there, I assumed. Probably some form of clear glass horse head on rectangular base. Or at best, possibly an old picture weight - the type with an image on a paper ground applied to the base of a section of clear glass. Well, maybe if it was a picture weight, it could be worth looking at.

Oh dear, how wrong I was!

As soon as I saw the image, I realised that this was a rather nice weight. Something about it held my interest, but I could not quite determine what that something was. The image, as mentioned earlier, was not of the best quality. There were two other pictures available through subsidiary links, but again the quality was not high enough to be certain about precise details.

The picture of the red horse on a white background was relatively clear and it was obvious that there was a well-set garland of millefiori canes at the periphery of the image. The weight was cut with six concave facets to the side and a large, concave facet to the top. Of course, all of this was stated in the seller's description, but I had homed in on the image, not the text - although I had, indeed, noted that there was no reserve allocated for this sale!

Baccarat Horse Side
Side view shows general shape of weight and facets.
Some of the chips and scratches are fairly clear.

I began to realise that I was probably looking at antique Baccarat "arrow" canes. That thought quickly brought me to my senses and I reached for copies of books and early sales catalogues. As it happened, the first piece of literature I picked up was the Sotheby's London, 1957 sale of the Maurice Lindon Collection. Thumbing through the pages, I found an image for lot 161 of that sale - an antique Baccarat picture weight. This example had a white circular plaque, upon which was set an image of Cupid on a cushion encircled by a single garland of millefiori canes. There were six side facets and a top one. The style was identical to the eBay weight, albeit with a different image.

But better to be sure.

I sent an email request to the seller asking for the additional images on offer. These arrived very quickly and it was immediately clear from the excellent quality of the close-up photography that my hunch was correct. Of this set of images, the one shown above gives a good view of not only some of the chips and scratches, but also the manner in which the garlanded, circular plaque floats within the weight. The two images below give views of the base and a section of the interior elements.

It is appreciated that some systems / monitors may not clearly show the details in this photo. Altering the photo itself does not give better clarity. Therefore, "outlines" have been added to assist with the following points:

  • The white under-layer of the plaque is complete but allows the horse to be seen in good, transmitted light. [dashed outline]
  • Some air bubbles, often difficult to avoid, were trapped beneath the plaque when it was encased in the crystal. [white "lumps" just visible within the horse outline]
  • A thin basal ring (age wear) can be seen at the edge of the base - size and position is typical of antique Baccarat weights. [thick, partial dashed line indicates position]
Horse Base with outlines


Horse Close View
  • It is clear that the grass beneath the horse has many more engraved areas than just the obvious tuft and patches.
  • The wavy form of the red ring is plainly visible.
  • The detail of the canes reveals blue and green "arrow" canes around a white-and-red star motif - this is a well-known form of antique Baccarat cane.

I was now convinced - the "impossible" had happened - an unrecognised, and very unusual, antique Baccarat weight was on offer with no reserve and no indication in the heading of its true identity. And at that stage, the bidding had only reached A $90 (US $47, UK 32).

It should be noted that this item was clearly stated as having some damage and this was borne out by the high-quality images. However, it was still worth pursuing. Could I possibly secure this, quietly and at virtually no cost? Maybe, but what about my friend ... without whom I probably would never have seen it?

Well, to cut things short, I did, in fairness, contact my friend and passed on the information I had discovered. Over the next few days, we continued our electronic communications. We also unearthed some other references to Baccarat Horse picture weights. Since the end time of the auction was in the early hours of a UK morning, I agreed to stay up to see how the bidding progressed.

My friend had set an absolute maximum, but it eventually became clear that their top bid was not high enough. So I signed in and submitted my own bid, with the thought that, if my friend was out of the running, perhaps I could have a chance at winning - at least, one of us would secure it.

Oh dear, how wrong I was!

I will leave the overall details of the bidding to the eventual winner, and also the seller, who have both kindly provided excellent descriptions of the excitement from their own perspectives. For now, I will just say that thirteen people had a go at this item, a few of whom were rather more keen than myself. But at least I had the consolation of having the first recorded bid of over A $1,000 in the final listings - even if that bid was immediately beaten by the time it was registered in the system.

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The Buyer's Story

[KevH note - The text for this section was written soon after the end of the sale. Please bear this in mind when reading. Also, italicised comments have been included to clarify some points - but the original text remains since it was perfectly valid from the buyer's viewpoint.]

I can't seem to stop smiling! Nor can I stop myself continually examining every minute detail, and wondering how on earth the craftsman made it, and whether he was as pleased with it as I am, and how many others he actually made that are still waiting to be discovered.

It seems like forever since I spotted the single fuzzy photo of a faceted weight with a horse medallion on Ebay, the Internet auction site. Of course it was actually only about two weeks ago, but a lot has gone through my mind since then. At the time, my stomach gave a huge lurch as I realised the weight was something really unusual. It had to be Baccarat, and old, judging from the millefiori garland. I hurriedly put in a bid of A $65 to "mark" it, and then went away to study my books. I soon realised that this was almost identical to a couple of weights sold by Sotheby's a few years ago for tens of thousands of dollars, and that this was only the seventh [*] known Baccarat equestrian weight found. And in my home country of Australia!

[*] In fact, this item is probably the eighth Baccarat equestrian weight to be recorded - see details below.

The next eight days, until the auction ended, I spent discussing endlessly with my patient husband how much we should bid for this weight, and our strategy. I'm no expert at Ebay auctions, having only started bidding for paperweights a few months ago, but I have had a few small successes. I don't have the most up-to-date computer, or the fastest modem or Internet service provider, so the option of putting in a huge last-minute bid was not appealing in case my computer connection failed. However, as the days went by we decided that was really the only way to go, so my husband went to use a friend's computer as a backup. When the time came, he had everything set up so that all he had to do was press one button to place my bid, with a phone connection so I could let him know if my computer failed.

Then we waited. And waited. A few hours before the end of the auction, the bids started coming in from all over the world, but still only a few hundred dollars. Nothing significant happened until the last four minutes, when the bids went up suddenly to over a thousand dollars. But the last minute was crucial - I couldn't stand the waiting any longer and put in my second, and final, bid then. There was no time to think, as each time I hit the Refresh button the bid had gone up by thousands of dollars. Only seconds later it was all over, and I'd won! Two other bidders had also put in last second bids of around A $20,000, but luckily mine had been the highest. I couldn't stop shaking, and laughing, for quite a while!

By coincidence, I had to go to Hobart the next day for work, so I was able to collect the weight myself the very next morning. My husband told me not to drop it in my excitement!

I'm really sorry the other collectors couldn't also win, and I hope in some way that this article will help to spread the pleasure of finding such a weight. I don't suppose I'll come across such an opportunity again. The nice thing is that so many people have written lovely letters, and shown so much interest in the weight. I've finally found out the colour of the one in the Corning Museum, and it's blue. There are two in the Bergstrom-Mahler Museum, one red and one blue. The three in Sotheby auctions were all blue. So mine is only the second known red horse, with five other blue ones.[#] I feel really privileged to own such an unusual weight, and am trying to find out just how the medallion was made, and the weight's provenance. My bank account is reeling from the blow, but it's worth it!

[#] See below for details of other known examples identified during research for this article.

The chips and scratches, though numerous, are shallow. There's a little bit of cullet above the horse's head. But the overall impression is superb, and the horse's features and stance are incredibly realistic. I only wish the craftsman at Baccarat could have known how much pleasure and interest his work would give, a hundred and fifty years on.

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Known Examples

In the table below, a thumbnail sketch is provided for each example found during research for this article. All images have been set with a common size and layout. Brief details pertinent to the style of each image is included, as is the size of the actual weight where known. The References are as listed in the "Chronology" and "Details" sections at the end of the article. Sizes are the overall paperweight diameter (and height, where given).

(The sketches were produced through a multi-stage process: Pencilled outline likenesses of the images were made, based on photographs in the various literature. Areas of rough pencil shading were added and smoothed by the simple expedient of rubbing with a finger. A digital copy was then made by scanning, and this was further enhanced using Photo Editing software to "erase", "clone" and "smudge" as necessary. Finally, each image was improved with sharpening and contrast changes and then optimised as a low-size "jpg" file.)

Cupid A

Ref. C1
red circle,
3 3/8 in. (8.6 cm.)
Click for refs.

+ Ref. C2?
Click for thoughts.

Horse Stand Left A

Ref 6
blue circle,
3 3/8 in. (8.6 cm.)
Click for refs.

Horse Leap Left A

Ref 3
blue circle,
3 3/8 in. (8.5 cm.)
Click for refs.

Horse Leap Left B

Ref 2
blue circle,
3 3/8 in. (8.7 cm.)
Click for refs.

Horse Trot Left A

Ref 4
blue circle,
3 1/4 in. (8.2 cm.)
Click for refs.

Ref 8
red circle,
3 3/8 in. (8.6 cm.)
H. 1 3/4 in. (4.5 cm.)

Click for refs.

Horse Trot Left B

Ref 5
blue circle,
no garland
3 1/8 in. (8.0 cm.)
Click for refs.

Horse Trot Right A

Ref 1
red circle,
3 1/4 in. (8.3 cm.)
Click for refs.

Ref 7
blue circle,
3 1/2 in. (8.5 cm.)
H. 2 1/4 in. (5.7 cm.)
Click for refs.

Notwithstanding the differences in sketching, Ref 5 and Refs 1 & 7 are essentially the same apart from the direction they face. (See also the Note against the Sotheby's entry under "Horse 5" in the section, "Reference Details")

Refs 4 and 8 are of an identical basic image.

For an explanation, see the comment in the section "The Manufacturing Process ..." .

Examples of other, similar workmanship include: "Engraved, Amber-Flashed" weights, "Single- and Double-Overlay Surface Engraved" weights and even a type with an animated head and tail!

Baccarat Engraved Amber Flash
Based on an antique Baccarat "Engraved Amber-Flashed" weight.
St Louis Engraved Overlay
Based on an antique St. Louis "Engraved Double-Overlay" weight.
Gillinder Horse
Based on a Gillinder "novelty" weight of the mid 1860s.

Click here for detailed references.

This table demonstrates similarities with the Baccarat picture plaques. It is clear that the engraving of the animals, be they horses, stags or even other creatures, has a common theme.

The Engraved, Amber-Flashed Baccarat weight used a technique much the same as for engraved Bohemian Flashed wares (see next section). Not surprisingly, there are examples of Bohemian Amber-Flashed paperweights, too. The flashing on the weight was applied to the base then cut through to reveal a "negative" image which is seen through the top of the weight, which typically would have been faceted. An alternative method, which produced a "positive" image, was to engrave the image into the base of the weight, apply a coloured flashing, then remove the amber layer except from the depths of the engraving.

The illustration of a St Louis Engraved Double-Overlay image shows the use of an external plaque. This, of course, is exactly the same principle as for standard glass cameo carving. However, in the few examples of these weights noted during research for this article, all seem to have simple, silhouette-type images. In examples with a carved single-overlay, the image may, in fact, give an unhindered view into the interior of the weight.

Finally, in this trio, is an image of a Gillinder Horse trotting on a grassy mound. At first sight, this may appear to be quite similar to the Baccarat items, apart from the green coloured grass. But, other than the stance of the animal and the section of ground beneath its feet, this type of "Horse-upon-plaque" has little in common with the Baccarat weights. The Gillinder example has the novelty of a moving Head and Tail (which was also used in a weight depicting a Turtle). The body of the animal is not engraved like the others, it carries a saddle, and the white "plaque" that it is set on is actually paper, not glass.

For literature with examples of these types of weight, see the "Reference Details" section, below.

Of course, having discussed the Baccarat Horse and Cupid images, and the similar alternatives, it should be noted that perhaps none of these would have been developed without the influence of expert Bohemian glass workers. This point is expanded upon in the next section.

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The Manufacturing Process and Similar Concepts

As shown in the table of references below, until around 1978 it was believed that these pictured plaques were painted, or made use of transfer images. Dwight P. Lanmon determined that the work was in the Bohemian manner of Karl Pfhol, an expert Bohemian engraver. Comparison has also been made to the work of Freiderich Egermann, another expert Bohemian engraver, whose influence has been seen on all manner of engraved Bohemian glassware through to the early 20th century.

Careful study of the details of each example during the preparation of this article has revealed an interesting point. As indicated in the table of Known Examples, various images (Ref 5 + Refs 1 & 7; Ref 4 + Ref 8) are essentially the same. This would make perfect sense if we assume that an outline mask was used for the initial stage of removal of the coloured layer. This is a standard practice with glass cameo work. The mask would be an acid-resistant material, removed after briefly dipping the plaque into an acid bath. This would leave a smooth white background and an outline of the main image in the overlay colour. The engraver would then complete the plaque with full or partial layered cuts producing the illusion of a three-dimensional image.

Example Bohemian Stag
Flashed and engraved vase, courtesy of a private collector.

This image of a Leaping Stag, although not of the highest quality work, is nevertheless quite typical of what is known as the "Egermann style".

Note that the attitude of the stag has similarities with the leaping horses in the Baccarat weights.

As can be seen, in this style of decoration, the image is engraved into a single, very thin, watery layer of colour. This type of colouring is known as "flashed" glass, and is achieved by spraying or painting the colour, rather than adding a second layer in the normal manner for cameo blanks.

Unlike the single-layer "flashing" used on the vase shown above, the technique for the plaques in the weights involved the application of a very thin layer of coloured glass over a white base. The coloured layer was then engraved through to the white beneath. This, of course, is an exact definition of Cameo Carving as revived in the 19th century, particularly by the Englishmen John Northwood and George Woodall.

The 19th century English style of cameo carving is shown in the portion of a vase illustrated. This image demonstrates the shading effects that can be achieved by carving the outer layer of glass to various depths.

However, the Bohemian style considered here differs from the English revival in that the overlay was, as stated, extremely thin. This is undoubtedly the reason that the Baccarat plaques were described prior to the late 1970s as "painted" or "transferred".

Example Cameo-carved Flower
Cameo-carved vase, courtesy of a private collector.

The actual engraving of the picture plaques is quite remarkable. Perhaps we can forgive the author of the reference in Glass Paperweights of The New York Historical Society where it was stated, "… is a transfer of a rather embryonic-looking horse …".

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Chronology of References

For details of the Reference Numbering, see the section for "Reference Details" below. A tentative reference is given for a second Cupid weight - see comments after the table.

Year Location or Author Description of work Ref.
1940 Bergstrom (image only - no related text) 1
1955 Jokelson Painted 2
1957 Sotheby's London Decorated C1
1968 McCawley (no description of working) C1
1969 Cloak Painted 1, 3
1969 Hollister Transfer 3
1974 N.Y.H.S. Transfer 4
1978 Hollister & Lanmon Cameo technique 3, + C2?
1978 Corning Exhibition Engraved overlay 3
1984 PCA Bulletin Engraved overlay 2, + C2?
1989 Bergstrom-Mahler Cameo-carved 1, 3
1989 PCA Bulletin Engraved overlay 2
1992 Sotheby's N. Y. Engraved overlay (ref to PCA 89) 5
1997 PCA Bulletin Cameo carved 1, 3
1998 PCA Bulletin Engraved overlay 5
1998 Sotheby's N. Y. Engraved overlay (ref to PCA 89) 6
1998 Christie's N. Y. Engraved (overlay is implied) 7
2001 eBay + this article Portrait [eBay description] 8

Is there a possibility of two different Cupid weights being known?
Click here for illustration.

  1. Within the article on "The Clara S. Peck Collection" by Dwight P. Lanmon, in the 1984 Annual Bulletin of The Paperweight Collectors' Association, Inc., it is stated, "... and two pink and white cupids. ..."
  2. The Cupid pictured in the 1957 Sotheby's sale catalogue for the Maurice Lindon collection appears to differ slightly from the picture in the 1978 book, Paperweights: Flowers Which Clothe The Meadows, by Paul Hollister Jnr. & Dwight P. Lanmon.

During detailed examination of the various images of the Cupid weight, I initially made a note that there were, indeed, two specimens. After further checking, I convinced myself that the differences were due to slight distortions arising from the angle of one of the photographs. It is likely that precise cane positioning can appear to be differently oriented, in relation to the central image, when a weight is viewed obliquely as opposed to directly from the top.

However, when reviewing the draft of the article and making final adjustments, I was again struck by a definite characteristic of the Cupid photograph in Paperweights: Flowers Which Clothe The Meadows. The same weight is also pictured, in monochrome, in the book of the Special exhibition of the Corning Museum of Glass. The facets in this weight are not symmetrical and yet the photograph seems to have been taken from directly over the weight. When viewing the image, it is quite clear that the uppermost facet does not align correctly with its lowermost counterpart. Also, perhaps because of this misalignment of facets, the picture of Cupid appears horizontally aligned with the lower facet. In the 1957 Sotheby's catalogue (and also in Patricia McCawley's Antique Glass Paperweights from France - which uses the same photograph) the colour image of Cupid in the frontispiece shows a different alignment. Cupid and the cushion are at a distinct angle in relation to the horizontally positioned lower facet. This is confirmed by a second, monochrome, picture in the catalogue within the section of lot descriptions, where many more of the millefiori canes are visible.

Was the statement in the 1984 PCA Bulletin made because of the points outlined above?

Is it the case that there is really only one known Cupid weight but that it has been severely refaceted in the years between 1957 and circa 1978? Or are there actually two known examples?

If anyone can shed any light on this mystery, please email KevH.

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Reference Details

In this section, the orientation of an image is described as, "facing right" or "facing left", and this implies, "from the viewer's perspective". In some auction catalogues, the heraldic terminology, "dexter" and "sinister" are used, but such terms are not always properly understood and are therefore not used here.

C1 - Cupid Seated on a Cushion - Iron-red, facing right, red circle, cane garland
Click here for illustration.

Sotheby & Co, "An Important Collection of French Paperweights" - The Maurice Lindon Collection, Part Two, 2nd July, 1957, Lot 161
[Total price realised: UK 350]

Antique Glass Paperweights from France, by Patricia K. McCawley, 1968, p. 54, plate 14, illustration 88; p. 32, Section: "Picture"

Note 1: The KevH copy of this book is bound with pages out of order, making it difficult to find relevant references. The order of pages is: 1-4; 57-72; 41-56; 25-40; 5-24; 73-92. Perhaps all copies are bound incorrectly?

Note 2. The text makes reference to "only two" recorded examples of this type of weight. However, one Cupid and two Horses had been documented prior to 1968.

Special exhibition of the Corning Museum of Glass, April 29 - October, 1978, Corning Museum of Glass, Corning, New York, Ref 38. (Loaned from a private collection)

Could this be a second version of the Cupid weight? See comments following the table in the earlier section for "Chronology of References"

Paperweights: Flowers Which Clothe The Meadows, by Paul Hollister Jnr. & Dwight P. Lanmon, 1978, p. 113, Ref 37

The comments on a possible, second Cupid also apply to this reference.


Horse 1 - Iron-red, trotting, facing right, red circle, cane garland
Click here for illustration.

Old Glass Paperweights, by Evangeline H. Bergstrom, 1940 [& 1948 edition], p. 41 illus. 24.

Glass Paperweights, by Evelyn Campbell Cloak, 1969 (First full-colour book of the weights in the Bergstrom-Mahler Museum), pp. 38-39, ref 215

Glass Paperweights of the Bergstrom-Mahler Museum, The City of Neenah Municipal Museum Foundation, 1989, p. 62, ref 200 + related text

Annual Bulletin of The Paperweight Collectors' Association, Inc., 1997, article: "Bergstrom-Mahler Museum Mecca for Paperweights" by Jan Smith, Curator


Horse 2 - Blue, leaping left over blue rock, blue circle, cane garland
Click here for illustration.

Antique French PAPERWEIGHTS, by Paul Jokelson, 1955, P. 82, B 104

Annual Bulletin of The Paperweight Collectors' Association, Inc., 1984, p. 13. Fig. 13, article, "The Clara S. Peck Collection" by Dwight P. Lanmon

Annual Bulletin of The Paperweight Collectors' Association, Inc., 1989, pp. 15-19, Figure 3, article "More on The Bohemian Connection" by Dwight P. Lanmon


Horse 3 - Blue, leaping to the left, blue circle, cane garland
Click here for illustration.

Glass Paperweights, by Evelyn Campbell Cloak, 1969, pp. 34-45, ref 503 (First full-colour book of the weights in the Bergstrom-Mahler Museum)

The Encyclopedia of Glass Paperweights, by Paul Hollister Jnr., 1969 Fig. 21.

Paperweights: Flowers Which Clothe The Meadows, By Paul Hollister Jnr. & Dwight P. Lanmon, 1978, p. 113, Ref 38

Special exhibition of the Corning Museum of Glass, April 29 - October, 1978 Corning Museum of Glass, Corning, New York, Ref 37.

Glass Paperweights of the Bergstrom-Mahler Museum, The City of Neenah Municipal Museum Foundation, 1989, p. 62, ref 473 + related text

Annual Bulletin of The Paperweight Collectors' Association, Inc., 1997, article: "Bergstrom-Mahler Museum Mecca for Paperweights" by Jan Smith, Curator, Figure 6.


Horse 4 - Blue, right front leg raised, facing left, blue circle, cane garland
Click here for illustration.

Glass Paperweights of The New York Historical Society, 1974. Pl. 69

Sotheby's New York, "Important Paperweights, The Property of the New-York Historical Society", Wednesday, January 18, 1995, lot 153 ("Possibly refaceted")
[Estimate: US $30,000-40,000; Total price realised: US $ 40,250]

Sotheby's Chicago, "Centuries of Style", October 15, 16 &17, 2001, Session Three (Oct 15), lot 791 (Description as per previous sale)
[Estimate: US $25,000-30,000; Total price realised: US $20,300]


Horse 5 - Blue, trotting, facing left, blue circle, no garland
Click here for illustration.

Sotheby's New York, "Fine Paperweights", Friday May 29, 1992, lot 114 ("minor chips")
[Estimate: US $30,000-40,000; this item did not meet the reserve price]

Note 1. The catalogue states an "identical stance ..." between the then current sale item and the one discussed in the 1969 catalogue of the Bergstrom-Mahler Museum. This bears out the observation set out earlier in this article - see the section on Known Examples.

Annual Bulletin of the Paperweight Collectors' Association, Inc., 1998, article: "The Hidden Gallery, New Discoveries in the Wonderful World of Paperweights", p. 40, Figure 5.

[N.B. The picture in the PCA Bulletin shows the horse facing right, whereas it faces left in the Sotheby's catalogue.]


Horse 6 - Blue, standing, facing left, blue circle, cane garland
Click here for illustration.

Sotheby's New York, Wednesday April 29th 1998, "Important Paperweights from a Private Collection", lot 236
[Estimate: US $20,000-25,000; Total price realised: US $ 25,300 (UK 15,180)]


Horse 7 - Blue, trotting, facing right, blue circle, cane garland
Click here for illustration.

Christie's New York - Wednesday 23rd September 1998, "The Homer Perkins Collection of Glass Paperweights", lot 180
[Estimate: US $20,000-25,000; Total price realised: US $25,300 (UK 14,927)]


Horse 8 - Iron-red, right front leg raised, facing left, red circle, cane garland
Click here for illustration.

eBay online auction + This article, February / March, 2001 ("numerous small chips")
[Winning Bid: A $20,229 (US $10,566; UK 7,315)]


Similar, Alternative Designs
Click here for illustration.

Bohemian Horse Beaker

Sotheby's, London, 1st / 2nd July 1985, lot 380; Bohemian ruby overlay beaker with an oval white plaque and a carved image of a standing Horse - in the style of Karl Pfohl.

Engraved Flashing

Glass Gallery, Michael Kovacek Exhibition, October 1987, No. 7, p. 35; "Yellow-stained" faceted Baccarat weight depicting a tethered hunting horse.

Phillips, London - 7th December, 1994, lot 233; Amber-Flashed faceted Baccarat weight depicting a tethered horse. (no image)

Phillips, London - 4th / 5th June 1997, lot 194; Baccarat or Bohemian Amber-Flashed faceted weight depicting a stag in bushes. [This is an example where the flashing is applied to a pre-engraved image, then the high-surface flashing is removed.]

Carved External Overlay

Glass Paperweights in The Art Institute of Chicago, by Geraldine J. Casper, 1991, p. 89; St Louis Double-Overlay in blue over white, depicting a hound and stag on opposing sides.

Annual Bulletin of the Paperweight Collectors' Association, Inc., 1991, article: "Collection of a New York Gentleman", p. 20; Double-Overlay in green over white with engraved silhouettes, on opposing sides, of a stag and a dog.

Annual Bulletin of the Paperweight Collectors' Association, Inc.,1998, article "Ambassadorial Weights on Paper" by Dena K. Tarshis, (photography by the Corning Museum of Glass), p 11, Fig. 1; St Louis Single-Overlay in white, silhouettes of a stag and a dog - the interior of the weight has an upright bouquet.

Gillinder Novelties

Glass Paperweights, by Patricia McCawley, 1975, p. 53; Black horse on white paper disk to underside of weight - horse's head and tail both move.

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The Seller's Perspective

What an auction - it was tremendously thrilling.

The Baccarat horse paperweight was purchased from a deceased estate along with a couple of weights - of the more modest Chinese variety. The weight was offered on a 10 day listing auction.

An early offer of US $425 was made to close the auction, so that it could be purchased for a birthday present for a friend! This was declined. A number of emails about the weight followed from possible bidders - but at the end of the ninth day the high bid remained at A $86.

On the morning of the final day of the 10 day auction the price had reached A $90 - oh dear perhaps the offer should not have been refused! At 12 o'clock (midday) - a vigil at the computer was begun, to field any late enquiries - the bidding was up to A $250. During the period between 1:50 - 2:20 four more bids - now up to A $410. Twenty more minutes passed and no further activity. Ho hum!

At 4:43 - only 7 minutes to go and the bidding recommenced, leaping to A $800 and the bidding began in earnest - the race was on, A $970; A $1,110; A $1,399; A $2,000; A $3,500; A $5,871 then, in the last sixty seconds, a giant leap to A $19,121; A $20,199, closing at A $20,299. Thirty-five bids in all from thirteen bidders - a hot auction.

The excitement was so exhilarating, as pressing the refresh button produced such crazy leaps. Are these figures real or was it a typographical error???!. While trying to calm down (impossible!) and take it all in, the phone rings and the buyer is saying "Hello, I just bid on your paperweight." We were both rather overcome with the excitement as we made arrangements for the collection the next day. What a thrill to meet the buyer, an enthusiastic collector, and to learn of the weight's rarity and special attributes and to know that it was going to be truly appreciated. How exciting to have handled such a rare item!

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If you are looking for Baccarat glass, you can sometimes find good pieces on offer on ebay. Use your judgement to be sure of the value of the pieces. Click here to see Baccarat glass.

Here are some books about Baccarat and about paperweights that you may find interesting. Click on the bookcover or the title to see more information.

Some Baccarat and Paperweights Books:

All About Paperweights book The Art of the Paperweight book Paperweight Signature Canes book The Glass Menagerie book

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Glass Museum Articles on Glass

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