stained glass


Stained glass windows, also known as polychrome stained glass windows, are compositions made up of colored glass. These can represent any scene or motif, but, in general, they are used as decoration in churches, giving life to some of the most important actions seen in the sacred scriptures. The glasses used, according to the traditional craft process, are extracted from the desert; Later they are painted or covered with enamels, and, once arranged in the desired shape, they will be assembled with lead rods. The word is a loanword from the French “stained glass,” which in turn comes from the Latin “vitrum,” with the addition of the suffix -ail.

Stained glass windows were already quite common in Romanesque churches. However, its heyday is during the predominance of the Gothic style, so its use was extended and normalized. These used to have an appearance similar to that of a mosaic and a large number of colors were used for the representation of religious motifs, with the exception of black and gray, because they were used in the contours. Around the 16th century, any colorless glass is available, to which enamels are applied, similar to a canvas. In the eighteenth century there are already few stained glass windows studied from that time, since almost all are imitations of previously made works.

The process of creating stained glass windows was quite systematized, consisting of cutting a pattern, pigmenting the pieces and firing in an oven. The glass was obtained from the mixture of silica, potash and lime; pigments, on the other hand, are nothing more than mineral oxides. These, once finished, were destined to serve as decoration in churches, normally, as windows.