An English parliamentarian
The Duméril Leurs & Cie company in Saint-Omer is the maker of this portrait pipe that was intended for the English market. Not surprising, because the person depicted, Sir Robert Peel, was known there as a Member of Parliament and was even elected prime minister twice. The pipe fits into a series of designs in which politicians are depicted from Robespierre and Danton to persons from the 1840s. Characteristic of the series of portraits is an embossed text line with the name of the sitter along the base of the bust. This makes it easy to identify the pipes. It remains unclear why those inscriptions were not placed on the stem, as was customary at other factories. Possibly this pipe is not contemporary, but from a somewhat later time fitting into a series of collectible pipes that have been expanded with a new copy each time. In this way, the Duméril company enhanced the customer loyalty of the politically engaged smokers, that could look forward to a new design. What makes this representation early in terms of dating is that the mouthpiece is still flattened and ends without a knot. After 1850 this disappears to make way for the standard node at the end of the stem. At the same time, the stem was shortened by more than a centimeter.
Amsterdam Pipe Museum APM 20.403Permalink