From the mids to the mids, snuff was enjoyed by all classes and was much more popular than smoking. It was particularly popular throughout the s and all the rage among the elite, although it also had its critics. Man taking snuff in the s. Courtesy of Wikipedia. The Grand Duke of Moscow was much more severe when it came to snuff. He disliked it so much he instituted punishments for anyone bringing tobacco into his dominion with the first offense being personal chastisement and the second offense death.
You can also find such boxes from different periods in history, such as Georgian or Victorian. It helps to know their function and origin.
A snuff box obviously holds snuff. Tobacco is responsible for the most common types of snuff.
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The box itself is a simple container with a lid that kept the snuff fresh which helped keep its potency. Powdered tobacco was less addictive when inhaled in its raw form into the lungs as opposed to being smoked.
However, it still addicted its users through the nicotine contained in the tobacco. They suffered from the side effects which included an increased risk of cancer to the nasal passages, sinuses, and throat. Snuff was quite popular for centuries and even today it is still used around the world. The first people to have created snuff were the indigenous population of Brazil.
Chew Copenhagen Snuff Tobacco Retro Tin Sign $; Empty Copenhagen Cans Lot of 72 Tin Containers & Lids Smokeless Tobacco Crafts $; Vintage COPENHAGEN SNUFF Tin - Paper Can - Chew Tobacco - Metal Lid Advertising $ Snuff boxes fit for the nobility. Craftsmen used fine metals like silver and gold and other materials like ivory, horn or tortoise shell to create the boxes. The boxes came both in a large size meant to be displayed on a table and used communally at parties and social events, and a . Snuff became established and meant that storing it for future use became a necessity, hence, the creation of snuff boxes. Creation of the Snuff Box Antique sterling silver snuff boxes created in the 17 th century from all parts of Europe and England became personal possessions.
For hundreds of years, they would grind up tobacco on a mortar made from rosewood. This gave the substance a pleasant wood aroma.
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Snuff stayed fresh for a long time when stored in airtight bottles. In the late 15 th century, when Christopher Columbus discovered the Americas and tobacco, snuff proceeded into Europe. Interestingly, the introduction of snuff to Europe came by way of Friar Ramon Pane.
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He had accompanied Columbus to the Americas and demonstrated the product upon his return. Snuff spread like wildfire across Europe after an initial mixed reception.
The 16 th century saw the spread of tobacco products and snuff became sought after by royalty and the well-to-do. By the 17 th century, snuff had reached English shores.
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It even became acceptable for ladies to indulge in the product. Antique sterling silver snuff boxes created in the 17 th century from all parts of Europe and England became personal possessions. It is little wonder that gold or silver and other valuable materials were used to make them.
Of course, as with other, similar items found in the households of the rich and royalty, the snuff boxes quickly became more ornate over time. There were two types of snuff boxes that were used given the fact that a person who indulged in snuff could be either in or away from their home when they wanted a quick sniff.
Pocket: The pocket boxes were small and usually only held enough for about a day or two of use.
They were small and slim, but still fashionable even when comfortably fitting into a pocket. The shape of the boxes were not just simple rectangles, but there were a variety of shapes used from square to round and so forth. Snuff boxes made from porcelain often looked like trunks and there were some shaped like shells, although they were quite rare.
It was during the 17 th century when snuff boxes started to become more decorated, different materials came to the forefront like silver. Still, many of the snuff boxes were hand-painted, featuring tiny portraits to bucolic scenes to miniature landscapes. It was sold in long-necked bottles, required moistening before use, and possessed a slight perfume and mild character.
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There was also a popular tobacco mixture that was a combination of Rapee, a dark-colored, coarse tobacco, and bitter almonds, reduced to a fine powder. To this was added ambergris, a wax like substance from the sperm whale used in perfume manufacture, and attar-gul, which is Persian for essence of roses.
Nov 19, Snuff-boxes were used by everyone, including royalty. Napoleon Bonaparte was said to prefer narrow oval boxes with hinged lids created from "dark tortoiseshell, lined with gold, and ornamented with cameos or antique medals, in gold or silver." It was also customary for aristocrats and royals, to present snuff-boxes to foreign dignitaries. For example, at the coronation of George IV, . Snuffbox, small, usually ornamented box for holding snuff (a scented, powdered tobacco). The practice of sniffing or inhaling a pinch of snuff was common in England around the 17th century; and when, in the 18th century, it became widespread in other countries as well, the demand for decorated snuffboxes, considered valuable gifts, increased. Antique Snuff Boxes. Related Categories. Auction Alerts. Inhaling snuff, or snuffing, as it is also called, was first witnessed by a European in , when Friar Ramon Pane, who had arrived in the new world courtesy of Christopher Columbus, was living as a missionary among Haiti's indigenous Taino. Until then, tobacco had been unknown to.
It was called Violet Strasburg and supposedly:. Man taking snuff using the thumb and finger method. Different people preferred different types of snuff.
For example, females supposedly preferred Scotch snuff. One writer humorously described the process of snuffing saying that after drawing it out of the snuff-box, the following happened:.
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Gently flap off the scattered particles from your frill with the knuckle of your right hand, take out your kerchief with a theatrical swing, and having gradually folded down the extremities till it has assumed the form of a silk ball, draw it athwart the cartilage of your nose, bending it far to the right, then to the left, then to the right again - flap your frill, return your handkerchief and by the time you have heaved another a-h-o-o, you will have been able to compose a very solemn and sententious piece of pomposity.
The Macaroni and the Dandy were said to be even more theatrical in their use of this tobacco product.
They used a spoon to raise it to the nose. Amazingly, however, there were claims the Scottish were still more theatrical.
Antique sterling silver snuff boxes with examples from England, Scotland, Continental Europe and further afield. Dating from the Georgian & Victorian period as well as the 20th century. Always very popular with seasoned collectors as well as the new collector with prices to suit most budgets. The History & Use of Silver Snuff Boxes. Snuff Boxes; Sort by: items available. 18th Century French Enamel Snuff or Pill Box. The enamel on this French 18th century snuff or pill box is in good condition. A superb silver snuff box dating from the end of the Georgian era. This attractive example has a rectangular body with acanthus leaf engraved decoration to the front lip. The. it would appear that dating unmarked snuff boxes might seem haphazard, but it really comes down to a question of the design, the pattern of decoration and recognition of the style of their hinge: an article by Bill Poynton for ASCAS - Association of Small Collectors of Antique Silver website.
They not only used a spoon but also a brush to remove the excess from their upper lip. Yet, if the Macaroni, Dandy, and Scot were busy being theatrical, there were a slew of royals who were not theatrical.
They used no spoon or brush. After purchasing the product, there were several ways to store or carry it.
When carrying it, something smaller was needed and so the snuff-box was invented. Small snuff-boxes also came in a variety of materials from wood to metal to stone, with the most popular shapes being either round or oval, although there were also rectangular shaped ones. Supposedly, the best boxes had tight-fitting lids to keep the tobacco fresh.
Snuff-boxes were used by everyone, including royalty. For example, at the coronation of George IV, 8, l. Those who took snuff often did so for more than just pleasure.