Featured Pipe


This is a new page that has been added to the AIP website where members can post photos and a description of a pipe that they find to be of particular interest and about which they have a particular knowledge.  Displaying the pipe in this way will also allow people to comment on it and submit additional information so that the description can be improved.

The ‘featured pipe’ will be updated at intervals and the previous descriptions added to an archive that will gradually build up a reference source of information about different types of pipe.

Our latest “Featured Pipe” has been sent in Giles Kleiber, who writes….

Corozo Pipe
(Collection: Giles Kleiber)

This Corozo pipe is from my own Collection.   The corozo, or tagua, nut comes from the ivory-nut palm of equatorial South America.  It can be easily carved when it is fresh and becomes very hard when it is dry.  It is often called the “ivory nut” since it resembles animal ivory and can be used to carve a variety of items such as buttons and even pipes.  


Fig. 1: Corozo pipe complete with stem and mouthpiece.


This particular pipe was carved by French prisoners in Guyana called "bagnards" in about 1850.  These pipes usually depict political or mythological scenes.  This example has an image of the god Neptune with his horses as well as a child with a fish tail blowing in a shell surrounded by decorative flowers.  The stem is made of exotic wood, corozo, wooden rings with a flexible hose and mouthpiece.

Fig. 2: (left) detail showing the child blowing a sea shell; (right) Neptune.


If you have any further comments you would like to make about this pipe, please contact us at admin@pipeacademy.org



Exceptional 19th century "Prunkpfeife", a marriage between East and West.
(Collection: Arjan de Haan, coll.nr. AH-1200 )

The clay pipe bowl is made of siderolith, a very hard baking type of pottery (Fig. 1). One of the most well-known manufacturers of this type of pipe was Leyhn in Pirna (Bohemia) and based on the manufacturing date and the quality of this clay pipe it is likely that Leyhn is the manufacturer. The pipe has magnificent fitments made of gold-plated brass, especially crafted for this pipe and matching the ferrules on the stem and decoration of the mouthpiece.

fig 1

Fig. 1: Detail of the bowl with its gold-plated brass fitments.


The mouthpiece is an Ottoman work of art, finely crafted from Baltic amber and considerably larger (longer) then it’s more common local counterparts. The mouthpiece measures over 16cm in length. The butterscotch coloured bulbous part alone measures 9.5cm (Fig. 2). A comparable mouthpiece was the centrepiece of a sultanic collection sold at Sotheby's (Fig. 3).

fig 2fig 3

Fig.2 (left): mouthpiece and Fig.3 (right): similar mouthpieces recently sold at Sothebys.

The stem is made of deep black ebony, inlaid with mother-of-pearl. It unscrews into three sections for easy transportation. Where the sections connect, gold-plated (or possibly gold) ferrules are fitted. The ferrules, as well as the mouthpiece, are adorned with precious or semi-precious stones.

The pipe is stored in a heavy Makassar wood veneered case, lined with green velvet and cream coloured silk. The lid is finely inlaid with mother-of-pearl, depicting a Chinese nobleman smoking a pipe while seated in a litter carried by two servants (Fig. 4). The case is dated 1837. The complete length of the pipe is 103cm.

fig 4

Fig. 4: The complete pipe with its Makassar wood case.


A commemorative pipe for the 50th anniversary of the Kingdom of The Netherlands (by Ruud Stam)
(Collection: Ruud Stam)

Two hundred years ago, on the 30th of November the hereditary prince Willem of the house of Orange, the son of the last Stadtholder Willem V, landed at Scheveningen after 18 years of exile in England. On the 2nd of December of that same year Willem was inaugurated in The Hague as King Willem I.   

This pipe commemorates the 50th anniversary of the Kingdom. On one side of the pipe there is a depiction of King Willem I, who reigned from 1813 to 1840. On the stem is the text: Eendracht maakt macht (union is strength). On the other side of the pipe is the portrait of King Willem III, who reigned from 1849 to 1890. On the stem is the text: Nederland en Oranje (The Netherlands and Orange). 


Orange pipe

Jan de Gidts "Orange Pipe", Gouda 1845-1894. [Photo :Hans van der Meulen ]

This pipe was made by the pipe maker Jan de Gidts who was a famous pipe maker in Gouda from 1845 until 1894. The heel is marked with a crowned 52.  Jan de Gidts had a medium-sized pipe maker shop and was well to do. In 1876 he had the largest number of employees, 18 adults and 2 children, who made pipes for him.  

In the Netherlands the so called ‘Orange pipe’ was rather popular. With such a pipe a man could show that he was an Orangist, a supporter of the House of Orange. The first ‘Orange pipes’ were made in the seventeenth century. The oldest of which probably dates from c1630 and depicts Frederik Hendrik and Amalia van Solms.


Duco, D. H., 1983. Een reclameontwerp voor Jan de Gidts. Pijpelijntjes IX (4), p. 8-10.

Meulen, J. van der & Steenbergen, M. & Mayenburg, F., 1984. Een interessante 19e eeuwse pijpenstort in Gouda. PKN 7 (26), p. 26-38.


An Austro-Hungarian silver pipe of 1813 (by Felix van Tienhoven and Natascha Mehler)

The bowl, of silver and partially gilded, measures 9cm in height, inclusive of the cover.  It has a ceramic lining and has been well smoked.  The stem is made of ivory.

Siver-gilt pipe, Vienna 1813. [Photo: Felix van Tienhoven]


The interesting aspect of this pipe is that it is well hallmarked.  These marks show that the pipe comes from Vienna, where the purity of its silver was approved in 1813 as having met the standard of 13-lötige/löthige (= .812 ½ purity).  Furthermore the makers' mark CR is clear in several places on the bowl.  Unfortunately the Austrian Hallmarks of the period 1737-1866 are not (yet) available.

At the Imperial Court in Vienna two silver-smiths are known who could have used a CR mark, both of whom were born in Germany and both of whom were called Christoph von Radt.  The first was born in Lindau, and died in Vienna in 1710, while the second was born in Augsburg and died in Vienna in 1730.  Presumably these are father and son, both of whom were "Hofsilberhändler und Hofjuweliere" (court silver traders and court-jewellers).

We assume that their successors continued to use the prestigious CR makers' mark.  Furthermore, we think that this exquisite and expensive pipe could only have been made for a member of a family in, or close to, the ruling class, which strengthens the credibility that the specimen hails from the Imperial workshops in Vienna.

If our assumptions prove to be correct we have an extraordinary object of Austro-Hungarian cultural heritage.


Detail of the hallmarks. [Photo: Felix van Tienhoven]


Can any reader provide further information regarding the CR makers' mark? If you can, or if you have any further comments you would like to make about this pipe, please contact us at admin@pipeacademy.org


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