One of these days you are going to come across a strange looking item marked "goblet" at a flea market or rummage sale. Take my advice and start looking for its brothers and sisters right away, OK?
These aren't goblets. They are shelf risers, or shelf pedestals, that were used to support glass shelves for retail displays in general stores, drugstores, or soda fountains. Many of them will be around 100 years old!
Photo Credit: Today's Treasure by Jen
Some shelf risers will be made from two pieces of molded glass that screw together in the center with a metal piece that joins them. Others will be made from one piece of glass, and can be more easily confused with a tall goblet or vase. One way to tell the difference is to pretend to drink out of it. If it's really awkward, it's not meant to be a goblet. As you will notice in the pieces above, there isn't room for flower stems, so they wouldn't make very effective vases either.
I have several shelf risers that I use in my showcase displays to add height, along with glass plates and cake stands. Lining things up on a shelf is just not very pleasing to the eye, so risers help vary the height. Of course, you don't have to be a retailer to find a use for shelf risers. Think of the possibilities for decorating your home. I'm thinking centerpieces, mantel-scapes, and vignettes atop mirrors.
Now that you know what shelf risers are, I hope you come across a set of them soon!
Note to subscribers: I had to re-publish this post because I had used an image without the owner's permission. Live and learn!