What is a Pokal glass?

Answered by Frank Schwing

A Pokal glass is a type of covered goblet that was popular in Germany during the 17th to 19th centuries. It is characterized by its flared bowl and lid, which are often adorned with intricate designs and decorations. The name “Pokal” is derived from the Latin word “poculum,” meaning cup or goblet.

These glasses were primarily used for drinking toasts and were often seen at special occasions or celebrations. They were typically made of glass, although some examples can be found in other materials such as silver or porcelain. The design of Pokal glasses varied greatly, reflecting the craftsmanship and artistic styles of the time.

One of the notable features of a Pokal glass is its lid, which served both functional and decorative purposes. The lid helped to keep the contents of the glass clean and protected from insects or other contaminants. It also added an element of elegance and sophistication to the overall design of the glass.

The flared bowl of a Pokal glass allowed for a larger volume of liquid to be held, making it suitable for toasting and sharing drinks with others. The wide opening of the bowl also allowed for the release of aromas, enhancing the overall drinking experience.

During my research on Pokal glasses, I came across various examples of their exquisite craftsmanship. The intricate engravings, delicate filigree work, and vibrant colors used in their decoration truly showcased the skill and artistry of the glassmakers. These glasses were often considered status symbols, with more elaborate and ornate designs indicating wealth and social standing.

In addition to their aesthetic appeal, Pokal glasses also played a role in the social customs and traditions of the time. They were often used in ceremonial toasts and special occasions, such as weddings or banquets. The act of raising a Pokal glass and making a toast was seen as a gesture of goodwill, friendship, and celebration.

Pokal glasses hold a significant place in the history of glassmaking and drinking culture in Germany. Their unique design, craftsmanship, and association with special occasions make them a fascinating artifact from the past.