NEW YORK (Dec. 28)
Technical details on the composition and probable method of manufacture in the seventh century of the Common Era of a giant slab of glass found by archeologists in a cave in Beth Shearim near Haifa, Israel, and believed to be the largest piece of glass until this century, will be presented at the annual meeting of the Archeological Institute of America on Thursday by Dr. Robert H. Brill, a research scientist of the Museum of Glass in Corning, N.Y.
Dr. Brill headed the research team which proved that the 8.8-ton slab measuring 11 by 6.5 by 1.5 feet is actually glass. Dr, Brill said today that the giant slab of glass shows the “remarkable engineering and technology for that time.” The fact that ancient technology was able to make an 8.8-ton piece of glass has surprised many specialists.
Only two pieces of glass made in this century have been larger than the piece in the Beth Shearim cave. They are two chunks of glass cast for components of the world’s largest telescope at the Mount Palomar observatory.