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Chinese Snuff Bottle Discussion Forum 中國鼻煙壺討論論壇
April 20, 2018, 09:45:32 am
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Coral bottle

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Author Topic: Coral bottle  (Read 795 times)
albert
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« on: January 29, 2017, 10:17:18 am »

Hello friends,
Iím not an expert in coral and much less in snuff bottles. I saw this item, and Iím interested in know your opinion.
It appears in auction and no one bought.

Thanks,
Albert.


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albert
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« Reply #1 on: January 29, 2017, 10:18:06 am »

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albert
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« Reply #2 on: January 29, 2017, 10:19:07 am »

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albert
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« Reply #3 on: January 29, 2017, 10:22:11 am »

I think that it is made in original coral, not dyed; the carving quality is not high; and the stopper looks strange in my eyes. Cheesy
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George
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« Reply #4 on: January 29, 2017, 02:27:56 pm »

My vote is it is dyed.. Modern carved with old stopper/spoon added.
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Joey
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« Reply #5 on: January 29, 2017, 02:31:47 pm »

Dear Albert,

    Sorry, my vote goes with George on this.
Compare with #68 and #73 in my 1987 catalogue.
Best,
Joey
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Steven
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« Reply #6 on: January 29, 2017, 05:17:35 pm »

I am with others, vote for dyed one as well the color is off the real red coral.I actually handled a couple of similar bottles before. It heavier than red coral, can you tell how heavy its? how is the hollowing, most of these kind of bottle are barely hollowed.

Steven
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albert
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« Reply #7 on: January 30, 2017, 05:08:08 am »

Thanks for your answers!!

I saw this bottle in cheap price, 99$, and I'm interested in it, simply because I like coral and shape. But when I'm seeing the other items of the same seller, I start to doubt, because many of their items are faux in my eyes. Finally, nobody bit for this item and I decide do the same.

Please can you tell me why you say that this coral is dyed? For me is impossible to see it, I only see the dyed coral when it is strong red and very uniform colour.

Best,
Albert.
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pookles
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« Reply #8 on: January 30, 2017, 05:20:57 am »

I don't know much about coral, but it seems to look like some kind of organic material like coral where we can see the wavy lines and inclusions in the material. To me it looks like a low quality, undesirable or off cut piece of coral. Also, the carving looks poor and is imo undoubtedly modern as I've seen a lot of these types of bottles before in various flea markets and low end antique shops for as low as a £50 price point.
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Luke
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« Reply #9 on: January 30, 2017, 06:44:49 am »

Dear Luke,

     I WAS TOTALLY WRONG.  Everything below is  to be disregarded:

   ________________________________________________________________
    It is definitely NOT coral. Not an offcut of coral, and not a poor piece of coral.
Simply NOT coral.

    I actually thought it might be a type of cheap, gypsom-type mineral, stained.
But I could be wrong about that.
But definitely not coral.
  _________________________________________________________________

WHOOPS!  Shocked Roll Eyes Grin

Best,
Joey
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Joey Silver, collecting snuff bottles since Feb.1970

pookles
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« Reply #10 on: January 30, 2017, 07:30:35 am »

Dear Joey,

Yep I always thought these were some kind of low grade variety coral. Often these bottles are an all over deep red colour unlike this one. Thanks for clarifying that it is definitely not coral. Must say I've always found these types particularly unattractive compared to the real deal of course.

Best
Luke
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Luke
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« Reply #11 on: January 30, 2017, 10:57:22 am »

I have one of these which may not come as a surprise  Smiley

A test is to put a drop of lemon juice on it and if it fizzes with bubbles it is coral, apparently. Mine did fizz so it could be both coral, badly carved, ugly and badly hollowed all at the same time which I feel is something of an achievement.

Regards, Adrian.


* P1300477.jpg (42.9 KB, 323x480 - viewed 12 times.)
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Joey
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« Reply #12 on: January 30, 2017, 05:24:40 pm »

Dear Luke,

     I agree with you 100%; this material is "particularly unattractive".

Best,
Joey


Dear Joey,

Yep I always thought these were some kind of low grade variety coral. Often these bottles are an all over deep red colour unlike this one. Thanks for clarifying that it is definitely not coral. Must say I've always found these types particularly unattractive compared to the real deal of course.

Best
Luke
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albert
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« Reply #13 on: January 30, 2017, 06:05:34 pm »

Thanks for your answers, but what? is not coral? I can think that this is a white coral bad dyed, trying to imitate a natural coral, but not coral? sorry, but I cannot believe it Grin

If it is not any kind of coral dyed, what is it made?

I'm waiting impatiently for your answers Wink
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Wattana
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« Reply #14 on: January 30, 2017, 10:29:13 pm »

All,

If you look carefully at the base of Albert's bottle you can see the "fanning" grain, a characteristic feature of marine polyps. If one were trying to imitate coral why go to the bother of re-creating this grain on the base? Broken branches of low grade bleached (white, and therefore dead) coral can be picked up on any tropical beach for free. Bleached coral is brittle and porous. It can be easily stained to any colour you like.

The bottle also shows signs of having holes and fissures filled with another material. Even the finest quality old coral bottles have areas of fill.

IMO Albert's bottle is made from real coral, but is poorly stained.

Tom
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Tom
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« Reply #15 on: January 30, 2017, 11:32:57 pm »

Tom

Thanks for clarifying that ! It also looked real to me but dyed..
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Pat
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Joey
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« Reply #16 on: January 31, 2017, 01:40:07 am »

Dear Tom & Pat,
 
    Do you both think that this is real coral?
I've never seen coral like this in a snuff bottle. That is why I was so sure. I've owned 3 18th C. examples and 2 19th C. examples. And I once owned a 20th C. example in white coral, for a short while.

   I will bow to your superior knowledge - you both live closer to coral than I ever have - Toronto till 1973 and Jerusalem since.  Roll Eyes Grin

    Albert, sorry for the mistake. Mea Culpa. Sad
Best,
Joey

   
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Joey Silver, collecting snuff bottles since Feb.1970

Wattana
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« Reply #17 on: January 31, 2017, 01:45:52 am »

Dear Joey,

There are very many different varieties of coral in the world's oceans, as there are many different types of wood with a wide range of appearances. It could be that the high grade material used on early snuff bottles came from a different source. I really don't know.

Are there any marine biologists out there...?

Best,
Tom

PS: Here is a link to NATURAL BLUE coral, thanks to George !

http://snuffbottle.smfforfree.com/index.php/topic,1231.0/msg,12096.html

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Tom
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« Reply #18 on: January 31, 2017, 03:06:24 am »

When I saw some suggestion the bottle Albert had found was not coral I had a quick look about the lines on coral and how to check if it is real or not, hence the test with lemon juice as I had always assumed mine was real.

Corals are formed by living organisms which secrete Ca CO3 (is this a type of limestone ?) forming a sort of skeleton in which the organism lives. This produces the growth lines on coral which look like the Schrenger lines in ivory.

Different corals grow at different rates and take all sorts of different forms. The coral in the bottles Albert and I have shown have very clear growth lines and probably come from the sort of branching coral most people would be familiar with and which in smaller bits are used on some bottles for stoppers.

From the coral stoppers I have (normal ones and not branch type ones) the growth lines are much less distinct than on these bottles (you need a loupe to see them) and far closer together. I have yet to hold a proper carved coral bottle but I imagine they are carved from this "better" coral in whatever form it takes.

Regards, Adrian.

Japan has coral in it's waters but China doesn't which may mean some coral bottles are made in Japan?
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pookles
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« Reply #19 on: January 31, 2017, 04:04:13 am »

Dear Luke,

     I WAS TOTALLY WRONG.  Everything below is  to be disregarded:

   ________________________________________________________________
    It is definitely NOT coral. Not an offcut of coral, and not a poor piece of coral.
Simply NOT coral.

    I actually thought it might be a type of cheap, gypsom-type mineral, stained.
But I could be wrong about that.
But definitely not coral.
  _________________________________________________________________

WHOOPS!  Shocked Roll Eyes Grin

Best,
Joey


Dear Joey,

Haha thanks. Good to know even the most experienced members can get it wrong sometimes. I still wonder if this might be some kind of organic ocean material that is not strictly coral, but i'm 95% sure now it is Grin What Tom says about washed up coral makes a lot of sense to me. Thought I'd post this bottle for posterity:

http://www.e-yaji.com/Marakovic/photo.php?photo=2169&exhibition=3&ee_lang=eng&u=4,212

Would love to own this one.

Best
Luke
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Luke
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