Interesting! Antique Oak ‘Church Wardens’ Clay Pipe Tray With Parts of Original Pipes Found By ‘Mudlarks’ Searching The Thames, London Plus A Replica Pipe – Circa Victorian or earlier

Minimum Donation €78.00

From a private collection and a wonderful conversation piece – finely carved antique fretwork pipe tray with carved open heart at each end. Small piece broken from side fretwork, which doesn’t detract from the overall appearance – and just for interest, teamed with genuine vintage clay pipe patterned bowls and stems with initials. Smaller bowls of circa 1600 to decorated bowls of the 1800s, found in the Thames estuary mud by modern day mudlarks, PLUS a replica of one of the smaller Churchwarden pipes. Of course, could also be used to display plants, but be sure to protect the unmarked wooden base from water. Tray H:7 x L:64 x W:9cm. Replica pipe L:20cm

Only 1 left in stock


The history of clay pipes dates back to at least the 16th century, with some scholarly sources indicating they were produced in England around 1558, shortly after the introduction of tobacco from North America. The longest clay pipes ever produced were an incredible 18-36 inches (46 – 91.5cm) long and are often referred to as ‘churchwarden’ clay pipes. In the 18th century, church buildings were open all night, and churchwardens were responsible for watching the church premises. To pass the long hours, they would smoke their clay pipes. There have been a huge number discovered by ‘mudlarks’ who search the bed of the River Thames where the exceptionally long stems of the “churchwarden” clay pipes would keep the heat and smoke away from the face of night watchmen there, so the line of sight was not obstructed as they kept watch

Additional information

Weight 1 kg