Base of a Water Pipe (Hookah)

Object Name: 
Base of a Water Pipe (Hookah)

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Object Name: 
Base of a Water Pipe (Hookah)
Place Made: 
Accession Number: 
71.6.1
Dimensions: 
Overall H: 17.5 cm; Rim Diam: 5.1 cm; Body Diam: 16 cm
Location: 
On Display
Date: 
1725-1775
Web Description: 
Tobacco smoking appears to have arrived in India during the reign of the Mughal emperor Akbar (1556-1605). The hookah was a water pipe in which tobacco smoke was sucked through scented water to cool it and to eliminate its harsh quality. With the establishment of the East India Company, English exports of glass to the Indian subcontinent increased dramatically. These exported wares included hookah bases made of high-quality glass that probably contained lead. The hookah base shown here is thought to have been wheel-engraved in India, perhaps in Delhi, because it matches, both in style and in technique, the engraving on jade and rock crystal made for the Mughal court.
Department: 
Provenance: 
Boney, Alice, Source
1971
Category: 
Color: 
Material: 
Primary Description: 
Colorless, lead glass; blown, cut and ground. Spherical-shape; flaring neck with one flanged knop; upper neck with cut design of floral sprays; flange with hollowed lobes; shoulder with running vine pattern flanked by rows of circular hollows ending below in an inverted row of flower and leaf units; body with isolated large grain or floral sprays and below a row of flowers and leaf motifs above a border of circular hollows; body rounds in to a slightly concave base; pontil area cut with four-petaled motif; bubbles, large to minute, in the glass, and several dark stones; several swirls can be felt exteriorly on the base.
Treasures from The Corning Museum of Glass (1992) illustrated, p. 96, #90; BIB# 35679
Masterpieces of Glass: A World History From The Corning Museum of Glass (1990) illustrated, pp. 146-147, pl. 65; BIB# 33819