Huqqa Base (Primary Title)

Unknown (Artist)

19th century
Indian
Glass
Tools, Equipment, Utensils
gilded glass
North India
Overall: 7 1/2 × 6 5/8 in. dia. (19.05 × 16.83 cm)
68.8.138

Known to the British as a “hubble-bubble,” a huqqa is a pipe in which scented, and often intoxicating, substances are smoked through cooling water. It consists of a water-filled base, a detachable bowl for the smoking materials, and a long tube through which the smoke is drawn. All three huqqa bases in this case are made from handblown glass and decorated with wheel-cut patterns. Earlier examples were spherical, resting on separate rings for stability. During the latter half of the 18th century, these two elements merged, and a flat-bottomed bell shape became the norm. This example, the latest of the three, features gilding over the wheel-cut decoration.

 

Nasli and Alice Heeramaneck Collection, Gift of Paul Mellon
Dye, Joseph M. The Arts of India: Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. London: Philipp Wilson, 2001. (cat. no. 209, pp. 435, 528)
Image released via Creative Commons CC-BY-NC

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