A tribe with its own tobacco pipes
In Southeast Sudan in the upper Nile area live the Dinka, a population known as the tallest people in the world. The wooden tobacco pipes that they use were only created in the twentieth century. They are inspired by smoking pipes of the British missionaries who appeared with colonization. The pipes are lightweight and portable, understandable requirements for a nomadic people. Another characteristic is the occurrence of a heel shape under the pipe bowl. This indicates that manufacture must have started at the beginning of the twentieth century, since the heel on the pipe disappears during the First World War. Interesting is how the Dinka have adapted the pipe shape to their own taste and embellished it with geometric abstractions. The Dinka combine hardwood with brass, sometimes with shell inlaid. Initially European bullets or cartridge cases were used for this metal finery. We see brass bands around the stem, but also around the heel and the bowl. The combination of the characteristic hardwood with this sheet metal finery became a local fad in the second half of the 20th century. The fine contrast of the metallic sheet with the dark wood turns these pipes into a jewel for every smoker.
Amsterdam Pipe Museum APM 22.347Permalink