Pipes of various materials

Clay, meerschaum and briar are the most common materials for the production of tobacco pipes. In history, however, a lot of experiments have been done with other materials, both metals and organic. Metal pipes have been produced from early times onwards: brass, bronze, iron and even silver. As you can imagine metal is not very comfortable to the smoker, because it heats up too quickly, while the taste is never good.

A wide variety of pipes made of organic materials exist: antlers, bone, ivory, fish teeth, buffalo horn, coral and shell. Even the pincers of a crab has been transformed into a pipe. Other pipes were made of mother of pearl, agate, coquianut, crystal or glass.

The qualities and limitations of the various materials gave new designs, often resulting in oddities rather than a functional smoking pipe. Many creations are not really a guaranty for cool, dry smoke, including a functional design for comfortable handling. So a lot of these pipes we hardly can imagine to match with a smoker.

In the end of the nineteenth century the briar industry conquered the world and experiments with unusual materials stopped gradually.

tobacco pipe made from an antler with carved hunting scene, Austria, 1830-1850 a monster carved out of staghorn with silver mounting, Austria, 1840-1860
detail of the hunter and his dogs, Austria, 1830-1850
pipe bowl with grotesk face and animal decorations from staghorn, Austria, 1840-1860
grotesque mask from antler with glass eyes, Austria, 1880-1900
rustic pipe from staghorn with buffalo horn mouthpiece, Austria, 1850-1880
large pipe from turned kerbauw horn with moist trap in the stem, India, 1850-1880
rare tobacco pipe the bowl made from a fish tooth showing an elephant, France, 1840-1860
a finely carved woman's face on the head of a parrot executed in coquianut, France, 1800-1830
side view of the pincette with floral decoration, West-Indies, 1840-1870 small tobacco pipe from the pincette of a crab, West-Indies, 1840-1870 tobacco pipe made from coquianut with nicely carved historic scene, France, 1800-1830
tobacco pipe in coquianut with historic scene and ebony and ivory stem, France, 1820-1850
pipe bowl made from three coquia nuts giving the bust of a Chinese mandarin, France, 1800-1830 long stemmed pipe made out of pieces corozo, the bowl shows the goddess Pomona, France, 1820-1850
pipe bowl with grotesque fantasy head wiht large wooden horns, France, 1830-1860
tabakspijp van ivoor met drie portretten waaronder een pijprokende vrouw, Dieppe?, Frankrijk, 1770-1800
tobacco pipe with traditional briar shape, ivory inlayed with a colourfull butterfly, origin unknown, 1920-1970
Gesteckpfeife in various materials such as meerschaum, antler, briar, reed and more, Northrhein-Westphalen, Germany, 1900-1930
tobacco pipe made out of fish bone with a stem from ivory, Eskimo, 1900-1930
tobacco pipe from reindeer bone with carved leafdecoration and painting of reindeers, Lapland, 1880-1900
cheroot holder from buffalo horn with hoof shaped bowl, bowl base and stem partly covered with imitation animal skin, France, 1880-1920 horn pipe with wooden bowl, Saint-Claude, France, 1880-1900
cigar holder in amber and vulcanite, Amsterdam, Holland, 1900-1920
popular reading pipe with a bent stem in iron, Holland, 1820-1860
tobacco pipe from calabash with meerschaum bowl interior and amber stem, incover, the Netherlands, 1910-1930 unusual calabash pipe with briar insert, the bowl lined with meerschaum, Birmingham, England, 1912
tobacco pipe in cast iron representing the bust of Napoleon, Thüringen, Germany, 1840-1870
calabash pipe with large meerschaum bowl interior and vulcanite stem, Parker, London, England, 1960-1970
silver cigar holder with knot in the stem, Kampen, the Netherlands, 1890-1900
original pipe, the cherootholder placed in a functional vice, the Netherlands, 1860-1890
silver tobacco pipe with ebony stem in two parts, France, 1825-1850
rare tobacco pipe in metal finished with enamel, Limoges, France, 1760-1800
silver cheroot holder with along the stem a pipe tool, Germany, 1870-1890
tobacco pipe made of precious stone, the buffalo stem holds a pipe cleaner, Germany, 1840-1860
large tobacco pipe in lime stone, the decoration showing popular folk motives, Schwaben, Germany, 1820-1850
eight sided tobacco pipe with engraved silver mountings, Germany, 1830-1860
pipe made from agate like stone with silver rims and lid, Idar-Oberstein, Germany, 1820-1850
small pipe in agate with engraved gold bands, Idar-Oberstein, Germany and the Netherlands, 1880-1900
the earliest type of cobcorn pipe with a reed stem, Colorado, USA, 1880-1910
sportive hardrubber tobacco pipe, the bowl resembles an football, the shoe in the stem, France, 1890-1910
cassette with two tobacco pipes and two cigar holders made in the modern plastic lined with meerschaum, Germany, 1935-1960
tobacco pipe in bakelite having a remarkable silhouette, England, 1910-1930
cheroot holder in painted Mercury glass with amber mouthpiece, Germany, 1880-1900
cheroot holder from carved crystal, Bohemia, Germany, 1870-1900
hardrubber tobacco pipe showing the bust of king Edward VII of Engeland, France, 1910-1915
large pipe from Venetian glass decorated with nodds, Venice, Italy, 1880-1910
pipe made out of Bohemian crystal mounted with a silver lid, Germany, 1830-1860
cheroot holder in vulcanized rubber with claw decoration, France, 1890-1910
All objects on this page are part of the Amsterdam Pipe Museum
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