Clay tobacco pipe, London, England, 1640-1670

Made:
1640-1670 in London
maker:
Unknown
Top left handside, A635162 - Clay tobacco pipe, maker unknown, made in London, 1580-1590. Anti clockwise from left

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Top left handside, A635162 - Clay tobacco pipe, maker unknown, made in London, 1580-1590. Anti clockwise from left
Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Science Museum Group
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Clay tobacco pipe, incomplete, part of stem missing, thick stem, large prominent flat circular heel, small bulbous barrel-shaped bowl hatched milling, unsigned, London, England, 1640-1670.

Tobacco became fashionable in England in the 1570s. Clay tobacco pipes were the easiest way to smoke it. They were inexpensive and popular but easily broken. Shredded tobacco would have been placed in the bowl of the pipe and lit, and the smoke inhaled through the mouthpiece. When tobacco was first introduced it was expensive so this meant that pipe bowls were quite small.

Tobacco became more available and cheaper as more and more tobacco plantations were established in the United States. Smokers could soon afford extra tobacco and so the bowls of the pipes became progressively larger. (Pictured here with other clay pipes ranging from 1580-1790).

Details

Category:
Smoking
Object Number:
A39082
type:
tobacco pipe
taxonomy:
  • furnishing and equipment
  • tools & equipment
  • pipe - smoking equipment
credit:
Sotheby's