Sunday, March 16, 2008

Question from Mark - Need help identifying two items

My kids have been given school home work in relation to tudor times.

can anyone assist me with answers to the following 2 questions please!

what are

taper caundles?

Ronnynge glases?

Any help would be appreciated

Thank you.


Blogger Lara said...

It looks like both of those items are from primary source document (maybe an inventory or a will) and the original spelling has been kept. I'm pretty sure the first item is just ordinary taper candles. If I remember correctly, they would have been made of tallow or beeswax in Tudor times.

As for the other item, I'm guessing that it "translates" to "running glasses", but I'm not sure what that would have been in Tudor times. Perhaps a decanter or something like that?

March 16, 2008 12:43 PM  
Anonymous PhD Historian said...

The first item is definitely "taper candles." The second is less clear. "Glases" is definitely "glasses," but perhaps not of the drinking variety. A "glass" in Tudor-speak was most commonly a mirror. Vessels for drinking, even the very rare ones made of glass (a huge luxury at the time), were not yet commonly referred to as "glasses." Seeing the full context would assist in determinng what "ronnynge" means, though I agree with Lara that "running" seems obvious. There is, however, an answer to the same question on Yahoo indicating that a running glass is "a glass with no base," perhaps meaning a stem-less goblet or what might today be called a tumbler.

March 16, 2008 1:41 PM  
Blogger Foose said...

I did a Google on "running glass" to see what turned up:

RUNNING(-GLASS) vbl. sb. 17. not in OED (naut.)
1994 G. Hutchinson Medieval ships and shipping 178
rennyng glass
note: author glosses as `sandglass'

So it might be what we call an "hourglass," the sand doing the actual "running."

March 16, 2008 7:57 PM  
Blogger Lara said...

That's what I get for trying to Google "running glasses" instead of just "running glass". Of course, all I got were hits for goggles for joggers...

I looked at the OED, and sure enough, there is 'running glass' as an obscure term for 'hourglass' or 'sandglass'. It seems to be in a 19th century book quoting a primary source of 1485 about the ships of Henry VII.

Learn something new every day!

March 16, 2008 8:46 PM  
Anonymous PhD Historian said...

Fascinating. I should have thought to check the OED myself. "Hour glass" it is then! Good work, Foose!

March 16, 2008 10:56 PM  

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