Skull shaped clay tobacco pipe, France, 1845-1900
Modelled as a skull, this clay tobacco pipe was made by Louis Fiolet in St Omer, Pas-de-Calais, France. Fiolet founded his business in 1746 and was known for his ornamental and human-shaped tobacco bowls. Shredded tobacco was packed into the bowl, lit and the vapours inhaled through a wooden or reed stem, which is missing from this example. Tobacco was introduced into France in the late 1550s and like elsewhere was popular for its taste and nicotine boost.
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The skeleton of the head of a vertebrate animal, including the brain case, or cranium, and the bones and cartilages of the face and mouth. The skull can be subdivided into two parts: the cranium and the mandible. The human skull is made up from 22 bones.
Glossary: tobacco pipe
A chemical compound that forms 0.6-3.0 per cent of the dry weight of tobacco. Nicotine acts as a stimulant in mammals, and is one of the primary reasons for smoking addiction.