Clay Pipe found at Bankside identified.

In my blog, Photos of Bankside Foreshore, there was a photo of an unusual fragment of clay pipe:


Using the Net, and with a great deal of help from someone at the Society for Clay Pipe Research, I now know that this pipe was made by the firm of Louis Fiolet, a well known French clay pipe maker from St. Omer, in the second half of the 19th century (and you can see another example of his work in the Science Museum here).

There would have been a separate stem made of goose bone or vulcanite, and the main part of the bowl is broken off – this fragment is only the bottom part of it. Judging from pictures you can find on the Net, the rest of the bowl might have been very decorative, as all kinds of portraits, characters and animals featured on French pipes.