Mechanical tobacco box, England, 1770-1830

Made:
1770-1830 in England
maker:
Unknown

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Penny-slot mechanical tobacco box, all brass with key, on four ball feet, Rich's patent, Bridgwater, English, 1770-1830

In the 1700s, before the era of cigarette machines, penny-slot machines like this one were used in taverns and pubs in London to sell tobacco for smoking, chewing and snorting. Inserting an old British penny (1d) into the slot would have sprung open the lid to reveal tobacco. The box was designed in Bridgwater, Somerset, England.

Details

Category:
Smoking
Object Number:
A3298
type:
tobacco box
taxonomy:
  • furnishing and equipment
  • container - receptacle
  • tobacco container
credit:
Sotheby's