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Snuff bottle

Snuff bottle

  • Place of origin:

    China (made)

  • Date:

    1750-1880 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Unknown

  • Credit Line:

    Salting Bequest

  • Museum number:

    C.1760&A-1910

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Snuff is powdered tobacco, usually blended with aromatic herbs or spices. The habit of snuff-taking spread to China from the West during the 17th century and became established in the 18th century. People generally carried snuff in a small bottle. By the 20th century these bottles had become collectors' items, owing to the great variety of materials and decorative techniques used in their production.

Physical description

The bottle is a heart-shaped flattened flask form with a flat-topped stopper.
It is made of chalcedony, honey colour with green mottled skin, with decoration carved in relief. The stopper is of dark pink glass.
The decoration depicts a grasshopper with two large cabbage leaves; a grasshopper on a leaf on reverse.
The bottle does not have a foot. There is oval angular indentation underneath.
The mottled green layer in the stone is carved in relief to form the decoration.

Place of Origin

China (made)

Date

1750-1880 (made)

Artist/maker

Unknown

Dimensions

Height: 5.5 cm

Descriptive line

Scu, China, carving, chalcedony

Scu, China, carving, chalcedony

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

White, Helen. Snuff Bottles from China. London: Bamboo Publishing Ltd in association with the Victoria and Albert Museum, 1992. 291p., ill. ISBN 1870076109.

Subjects depicted

Leaf; Grasshopper

Categories

ELISE; Containers; Personal accessories

Collection

East Asia Collection

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