pipe has a candle inside, the bottom is marked "hand painted in Japan", it's like lustre paint on the bottom "spade" looking dish. it's odd!!!
I believe it's an ash tray with a cigarette holder in the middle....and I'll bet that there were originally a heart, club and diamond to go with it and they were meant to set on a bridge table during the game.
It could have been an ash tray. The center piece likely held matches or pipe cleaners (for cleaning the stem of a cigarette holder). Although, it does have a pipe figure in the dish, it appears too fragile for pipe use. A pipe and ash stand has places to park a pipe and a surface suitable for knocking the ashes out of a pipe. That surface can take the pounding of knocking an inverted pipe bowl against it to dislodge ashes.
I don't think this has anything to do with cigarettes. As a former smoker, I think it is totally impractial as an ashtray. And as previously stated, it's not practical for a pipe holder/ashtray. Soooo I really think we're overthinking this. I think it is nothing more than a chotsky made to reseamble a pipe sitting in a spade shaped dish.
Looks like a candlestick to me.
I suspect that most of you are too young to have lived through the days of "ladies card parties" when there were little ash trays at every place and often a little cigarette holder as well. Every good hostess had several sets of card table ash trays. They weren't large and had to be emptied often, but that was fine, because every good hostess also had a silent butler and regularly made the rounds of the tables and emptied the ash trays.
I really think it's one of a set of 4 ash trays and cigarette holders.
Here is a link that might be useful: card suit ash trays
I would have never guessed ashtray. It looks like one of those olive dishes to me, with the middle part is for the pits.
I'm in agreement with Linda on this one. I can remember when my mother would set up the card tables for the ladies to play bridge in our living room and parlor, and beside each seat was a little ashtray, because nearly all the women smoked in those days. We didn't have the silent butler, though, I can remember my mother running about emptying those ashtrays and refreshing everyone's drinks as each new hand was played.
I believe it's a match stick holder. Usually made in Japan with that type of decoration, could be either Noritake or Nippon but quite often unmarked.
I have a couple of reasons for believing this is not an ashtray. If the pipe looking thing in the middle is permanently attached, when the hostess emptied the butts into the silent butler the contents of the Pipe would be discarded also no matter what is was. Matches, cigarettes, candle, whatever thrown out with the ashes. The dish could conceivably be an ashtray if the pipe wasn't there but, when I smoked, I would not have liked an ashtray that did not have a notch for the cigarette to rest in to keep the lit tip off the bottom and extinguishing itself. Most ladies would want to put their cigaratte down when they wanted to use both hands to play or rearrange their cards. So, tray alone possible ashtray, tray with pipe, probably not.
It does appear it could be used as a candle stick holder. The stylistic stem of the pipe is the handle for moving the holder about.
I'd have to see into the bottom of the hole in the center of the tray. The top part is designed wrong for a candle holder unless farther down, there is another reduced diameter matching the top hole.
Looks like a chamber stick to me.
Here is a link that might be useful: Chamber stick
By the time the cigarette butts needed to be emptied, the 3 cigarettets had been smoked....
As for the notch for the cigarette to rest in...many many didn't have a notch....check the link I posted for one example.
It's not a chamber stick....
This is a mid 20th century porcelain Chamber stick. As you can see, the central pot holds the candle with the portion surrounding the candle piece catching both burnt wicks and dribbling candle wax. This piece is based on a mid 19th century design but it is quite attractive. Nice item.
This is a mid century Japanese Porcelain chamber stick with the central receptical being used to locate the candle. The person then uses the handle to carry this chamber stick to light their way. A quite delicate Japanese reproduction of a 18th and 19th design.
I don't think it's an ashtray either, for reasons pris stated. Looks like an unusual chamber stick/candle holder to me as well.
If you think it's for a candle, try putting one in it. Candle holders are not tulip shaped...if anything they flare at the top.
Mid 20th century chamber stick???? Not a common design for Mid Century, and of all the tschotskes made in Japan, chamber sticks were certainly not common.
Not saying it couldn't be, but I'll bet there is a heart, a club and a diamond shaped one out there somewhere.
Match holders always....at least everyone I have seen have a striker. Can you see a striker on that? could it be on the pipe handle?
Candle holders are not tulip shaped...if anything they flare at the top.
Royal Delft chamberstick, no flare
vintage Fenton candle stick, no flare at top
antique Derby porcelain putto chamberstick tulip shaped
I agree with the its not an ashtray constituancy. I think its some kind of relish dish.
Okay....time for a wildcard guess ~~ how about a toothpick holder with, let's say, olives gherkins, etc. in the dish???
I agree with the "it's an odd shape for holding a candle" constituency (as it is way more rounded than even the Denby example), but I wouldn't lay money on the ashtray idea either. You couldn't clean it well with all those crannies. That renders the food idea unattractive to me too. Would seeing inside reveal anything more? And just how big is it?
My point in posting examples was not to find exact replicas, but rather if one is going to speak in absolutes, it's probably best to be absolutely sure of what they're saying.
Toothpick holder/relish tray doesn't seem to far fetched, either. ;)
Ess did say it had a candle in it. Of course some of us will shove a candle in anything during a blackout...
the dish is small, it fits in the palm of my hand so too small for a relish dish. there's no strike spot on it. from reading all the replies candle stick seems more likely than ash tray.
Okay. That makes me think more than ever that this as replica of something else. Much like the tiny cups and saucers my GM collected. I think it's a small pottery replica of a smoking pipe sitting in the ash tray. The original item would have been made out of a more durable material such as some sort of metal. A pipe ashtray would not need slots for the pipe as a cigarette would. Since I'm not an expert in antiques or vintage it is JMHO.
Were there special pipe ashtrays? Seems odd to me. I'm voting for chamber stick.
Yes there were ashtrays designed for pipes and cigars. They come in all kinds of designs from whimsical to utilitarian. And, I agree that the other possibility is the chamberstick. My only reason for going for a miniature replica of a pipe and tray is the size. Something that fits in the palm of the hand is not practical for anything so far suggested. I'm not that familiar with chambersticks but have seen a lot of period movies where the lady of the house uses one to light the way upstairs after extinguishing the downstairs lights for the evening. The ones I remember were quite a bit larger than something that fits in the palm of your hand. Of course, miniatures have been made of all sorts of things so that's a possiblity also. In any case, I don't believe that it is something that would be used like the full size original would be.