Snuff Bottles Then and Now

Snuff bottles have made a comeback after a 100 year break.

Keeping your prized snuff in a glass bottle was popular in the 18th and 19th century. Chinese snuff bottles became very popular because of their excellent craftsmanship and functionality. The snuff bottles made in during the Qing dynasty in China were usually no larger than about 3 inches and were made of glass or jade. Chinese snuff bottles have in recent times become collectors items because of their cultural significance and works of art.

Today snuff bottles can be made of glass, but also of a strong chrome metal polished to look like glass. Sometimes with a screw on lid but sometimes with a old world style cork to add some refinery.

Snuff bottles recently featured in the tv series Peaky Blinders. The use of a small cobalt blue bottles (cobalt blue bottles usually contained poison) to carry cocaine can be spotted several times in the series. Interestingly the slang name for cocaine in the show is ‘Tokyo’ short for ‘Tokyo Rose’ cockney rhyming slang for ‘nose’.

Snuff Bottles as seen in the TV series Peaky Blinders
Snuff Bottles as seen in the TV series Peaky Blinders

Snuff Bottles or Containers?

Keeping your snuff or other powders in a special Snuff Bottle or other type Snuff Container such as a Snuff Box can be an excellent idea. It’s possible that a long exposure to air can dry out your snuff and it can lose its potency. Snuff bottles and other containers should be airtight so there is no possibility your snuff will waste away. Some containers are small and carry about a days worth of snuff. Sometimes they and designed to be carried on a keychain or in a pocket. Larger containers for keeping your snuff safe at home are popular. Mostly to reduce the possibility of misplacing your snuff but also to protect from damage or simply to keep away prying eyes.

Pill box or Snuff Containers
Pill box or Snuff Containers

The choice between a snuff bottle or a snuff container can very much depend on personal preference. But mostly it depends on the situation. A special snuff container (on a keychain perhaps) might be more practical than a snuff bottle. Or a snuff bottle might be a more fashionable accessory? Whichever you choose, your snuff bottle, or snuff container should ensure you enjoy your snuff as much as possible.