Dating english clay pipes
Expensive pipes once had stems made of amber, though this is rare now. Briar is a particularly well suited wood for pipe making for a number of reasons.The first and most important characteristic is its natural resistance to fire.Because these items are rather fragile a lot of it was thrown away by our ancestors.Archaeologist can use the pipe fragments for dating when they excavate a site by using the principle that everything that was deposited with it or on top of it must be placed there after the pipe production.Pipe smoking is the oldest known traditional form of tobacco smoking.The tobacco plant is native to South America but spread into North America long before Europeans arrived.Unusual, but still noteworthy pipe materials include gourds, as in the famous calabash pipe, and pyrolytic graphite.Metal and glass are uncommon materials for tobacco pipes, but are common for pipes intended for other substances, such as cannabis.
The burl absorbs water in nature to supply the tree in the dry times and likewise will absorb the moisture that is a byproduct of combustion.
Trying to identify and date clay pipe fragments can be both difficult and fun.
The information on this site provides some help with this task, but can never replace the 'experts eye' completely.
Minerals such as catlinite and soapstone have also been used.
Pipe bowls are sometimes decorated by carving, and moulded clay pipes often had simple decoration in the mould.