Years before the first production of glass, the Egyptians were using a glass-like material. The Egyptians were quite ahead of their time using a popular building called faience, which was used to produce amulets and small vessels, was a mixture of sand (quartz) mixed with an alkali binder. This material was molded and fired, which left them with a very bright glaze that came to the surface. This is a much easier process than the production of glass, which requires extreme temperatures. The Egyptians were way ahead of their time. It makes you wonder what they did back then for simple termite treatments. If they were so far ahead with their building materials, maybe we should look at what they were doing back then for basic things like pest control.
Around 1500BC, the Mesopotamians and the Egyptians introduced a method; this was called core-farming which was a major breakthrough in the production of glass and lead to this technique being used for over one thousand years to follow. They made glass vessels in many shapes. Although they were able to make glass, this was a very lengthy process, which meant that only nobility was able to purchase it due to its expense.
Another technique developed around the same time was called the Millefiori method. This stands for 'a thousand flowers' in Italian. Developed in Mesopotamia, it also required a large amount of man-hours to produce and therefore was also very costly. Again, allowing it only to be purchased by the nobility of the time due to its sheer high costs.
Around the middle of the first century BC, glass blowing made its debut. It was despite the best advancement in technology. It was apparently done from the very first century AD onwards. This was a much more speedy process and therefore mean that more than nobility could enjoy its benefits.
Soon this technique was to overtake the production of pottery and metalwork due to its haste in making and it is much better for storage.
The Roman Empire produced so much glass, which was used to store things in for shipping, including wine which was stored in glass jugs. Due to its mass production it could have enjoyed by all.
There are remnants of ancient Roman glass still around today, usually held by collectors and sometimes some museums for all to see. The most common glass was called unguent aria, tear bottles, in English. They are all different sizes though usually are seen with a bulbous base and a slender, long neck with a rim that is flat. They come in colors from green shades, no color at all and pale blue usually can be seen. And occasionally they have a pattern that is iridescent in nature. It was normally used for cosmetics, oils, perfumes.
If you have the opportunity to see some glass from around this time, you can now take with you a little bit of information about the history of this glass, to consider while you are viewing it.