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Water Pipes / Scientific Glass History

Water Pipes / Scientific Glass history

Today, the number of percolators, glass styles, smoking techniques, and the variety of present day glass water pipes are vast. Never ending colors, shapes, sizes and styles shape today's Water Pipe market, but this wasn't always the case. For many smokers, a glass water pipe is not only a method of smoking, but also a piece of unique artwork. Glassmaking is an aged artistic expression, yet it was not until the late 20th century that Glass pieces became widely accepted amongst all of society, regardless of social class. The history of water pipes begs the question:  How did we arrive at the present day attitude towards glass making as an art form and not just a preferred smoking method?

The use of water pipes can be traced as far back as the Ming Dynasty in China during the 16 century. The material of choice was typically Bamboo or metal, with pipes predominately used by older generations. When smoking, the user kept all equipment on the rack and just held the entire assembly (rack, pipe, and container) in one hand, lighting the bowl with a slow-burning paper wick lit over a coal stove. Traditional glass water pipes became valuable in Ancient Rome, when glass blowing was a very intensive, time-consuming process. The result was often very basic and rudimentary pieces. Early expert glass makers found the Meditteranean nations to be appreciative and supportive of this art-form.

At first, glass pieces were mostly utilized by the privileged class, such as ministers and land owners. Because of the real artistic ability and skill needed to shape glass, early glass was as important as diamonds or other rare artifacts. Finally, around 30 BC, in Rome, glass shaping evolved into glass blowing. The Romans started to shape glass when it was warm by blowing into it with a blowpipe. This essential system is still utilized by glassblowers today. Like kaleidoscopes, advanced glass water pipes are entrancing.

Today, the wide variety of colors, sizes and styles do not go unnoticed by smokers and connoisseurs. Overall, these are not simply pipes; they are pieces of art which require a unique skill and are widely appreciated. Glassmaking might be an old artistic expression, yet it was not until late history that glass pipes and water pipes became as prevalent and popular as they are today.

Glass-fabricating systems have made some amazing progress, turning it into a popular art-form, which is readily available to everyone in society, regardless of class or social standing. Pyrex, flame was working, the utilization of oxides, sulfides and different advancements like the back to front funnel became standard in glass-blowing.

As the popularity of glass continues to flourish, glass water pipes are preferred by smokers and come in many forms. With smoke shop expos in Las Vegas and trade shows throughout North America, the niche industry of glass blowing continued to develop and evolve. Presently, many smokers prefer ‘showcasing’ their glass, just as others would do with a painting, sculpture or other pieces of art. It has truly developed into an art, ever since the beginning use in China, Rome, Egypt and Mesopotamia.

Today, there are many glass blowers all over the world showcasing their skills; we pride ourselves on carrying some of the finest made glass, which are available at afrosmoke.com.  Our site will give you a good idea as to how far the art of glass blowing has come, as it continues to grow in both variety and popularity. 

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