5 1/2 x 3 3/4 x 11 3/4 H Oval Glass Dome
Oval Glass Dome
One way to make oval glass domes is to make a mold the size of the dome that you need and blow the molten glass into the mold. The problem with this method is that the glass is generally thicker on the rounded part than the flat sides.
One way to tell if a glass dome is old is by checking the color of the glass. Today we have very pure raw materials. In the older days this was not the case. Many of the older glass domes will have a slight blue or gray tint to the glass. It generally does not detract from the item displayed.
Most of the antique glass domes will have a paper tape on the bottom (or a visible trace of it once being there). The paper tape had two purposes. First if gave a slight cushion when setting the dome down. Second it covered the chipped bottom of the dome from it being cut to a particular height.
Many oval glass domes cover mechanically moving objects like monkey, bird, or doll. In many of these cases the eyes move the arms move or it may be a doll playing a piano or violin. If there is an instrument there is generally music to enhance the effect. The displays are known as Automatons. These are quite rare but can be found in museums or private collections.
Marble bases are common for antique glass domes. There are two types of base on with a groove for the glass dome to sit in or a raised center for the glass dome to fit over. Many of these bases also have marble feet to rest on.