Question: How old are clay pipes?

The history of clay pipes dates 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.

How can you tell the age of a clay pipe?

Clay pipe bowls can be dated with some certainty according to their shape, size and decoration, and with even more accuracy if they feature a makers-mark on the heel, the protrusion under the bowl. The top pipe bowl above dates from 1640-60 while the one below is a fairly typical decorated one from 1780-1820.

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