Path of light • The Celts
Celtic tribes lived in an area north of the Alps and Central Europe for several centuries before Christ. But by approximately the 1st century AD, the Romans had pushed them to Scotland and Ireland. However, the Celts left many traces behind them (the La Tène culture), both in material forms and in the naming of places and rivers. The later Latin name Boiohaemum (or Bohemia) was derived from the Celtic tribe of Boii. The Slavs, including the Czech tribes, came to Central and Eastern Europe during the 6th century AD. The Celts melted glass in their oppida (large defended Iron Age settlements) and used it to make colorful and ring-shaped beads, as well as smooth and relief-decorated bracelets. The most common colors were blue and purple, along with yellow, yellow-brown or green. The Celts were also capable of melting clear glass.
The Oldest Written Record Concerning the Production of Glass in Bohemia
According to a Latin chronicle (written by a monk in the Benedictine monastery in Sázava near Prague in 1162), their abbot, Reginard of Metz, knew how to produce and paint on glass. This was probably stained glass but, unfortunately, none survived. From later periods, however, we can admire the fragment of beautifully made stained glass from the abbatial chapel of the Cistercian monastery in Osek that depicts St. John the Baptist.