Lamp-working is a type of glass-work where a torch or lamp is primarily used to melt the glass. Once in a molten state, the glass is formed by blowing and shaping with tools and hand movements. It is also known as flame-working or torch-working, as the modern practice no longer uses oil-fuelled lamps. Although lack of a precise definition for lamp-working makes it difficult to determine when this technique was first developed, the earliest verifiable lamp-worked glass is probably a collection of beads thought to date to the fifth century BC. Lamp-working became widely practised in Murano, Italy in the 14th century. In the mid 19th century lamp-work technique was extended to the production of paperweights, primarily in France, where it became a popular art form, still collected today. Lamp-working differs from glass-blowing in that glass-blowing uses a furnace as the primary heat source, although torches are also used.
Lampworking is used to create artwork, including beads, figurines, marbles, small vessels, Christmas tree ornaments, and much more. It is also used to create scientific instruments as well as glass models of animal and botanical subjects.