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Chinese Snuff Bottles

Chinese snuff bottles, only a couple inches in height, are pieces of art that once held powdered tobacco as a remedy for headaches, stomachaches, and other ailments. These small bottles can be made from glass, jade, ivory, ceramic, and metal, among other materials. The more intricately and beautifully decorated the bottle, the higher status or rank of the owner in historical China.

Due to the humid climate of China, snuff would normally stick together and become a solid block in a container that was not fully sealed. Realizing this, Emperor Kangxi commissioned the creation of beautifully hand-decorated medicine bottles with well-fitted lids during the Qing Dynasty. Since then, the popularity of these snuff bottles grew and snuff bottles became synonymous with aristocracy.


Quick Facts

  • Influenced by the Jesuit society, the Chinese made many beautiful glass snuff bottles, but later opted for more durable materials like jade or coral since glass tended to shatter during the bitter-cold winters
  • Since the 1920s, snuff has not been in use. Despite this, Chinese snuff bottles continue to be in production and are common collector's items to be proudly displayed
  • During the Yongzheng and Qianlong periods, the Jesuits taught Chinese artisans to enamel on metal or glass. These snuff bottles thus had very Western themes, and are today very rare and sought after

Recommended Items at Auction

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CHINESE ENAMEL HAND PAINTED SNUFF BOTTLES X 2 (1 LID ONLY)
Oct 06, 9:00 AM AEST
CHINESE ENAMEL HAND PAINTED SNUFF BOTTLES X 2 (1 LID ONLY)
by Albion Antique Auction Centre
Est: AUD10- AUD40
AUD403 Bids
Chinese snuff bottle and stone seal collection
Oct 12, 10:00 AM EDT
Chinese snuff bottle and stone seal collection
by Millea Bros Ltd
Est: $100- $150
$602 Bids
Chinese Blue & White Porcelain Snuff Bottles, H 3'' Dia. 2'' 2 Pcs
Oct 13, 11:00 AM EDT
Chinese Blue & White Porcelain Snuff Bottles, H 3'' Dia. 2'' 2 Pcs
by DuMouchelles
Est: $100- $200
$702 Bids
Vintage Reverse Glass Chinese Snuff Bottle
Oct 08, 12:00 PM EDT
Vintage Reverse Glass Chinese Snuff Bottle
by Blackwell Auctions LLC
Est: $200- $400
$1001 Bid
11 CHINESE SNUFF BOTTLES
Oct 25, 9:00 AM CDT
11 CHINESE SNUFF BOTTLES
by Jackson's International
Est: $100- $150
$1001 Bid
(5) Chinese Antique Snuff Bottles
Oct 15, 10:00 AM EDT
(5) Chinese Antique Snuff Bottles
by Atlanta Auction Gallery, ltd
Est: $200- $400
$1001 Bid
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A ENAMELED GLASS OCTAGONAL SNUFF BOTTLE. 18TH CENTURY.
Oct 06, 9:30 AM SGT
A ENAMELED GLASS OCTAGONAL SNUFF BOTTLE. 18TH CENTURY.
by H&H Brother Auction House
Est: $2,000- $3,000
$1,0001 Bid
A CHINESE JADE SNUFF BOTTLE ORNAMENTS
Oct 08, 6:00 PM MST
A CHINESE JADE SNUFF BOTTLE ORNAMENTS
by AZP Art Gallery Corp.
Est: $4,000- $5,000
$8001 Bid
TIBETAN SNUFF BOTTLE WITH SPOON ROCK STONE LAPIDARY SPECIMEN
Oct 06, 1:00 PM CDT
TIBETAN SNUFF BOTTLE WITH SPOON ROCK STONE LAPIDARY SPECIMEN
by Col. Christie Hatman, Auctioneer
Est: $0- $0
$121 Bid
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A ENAMELED GLASS CONJOINED SNUFF BOTTLE. 18TH CENTURY.
Oct 06, 9:30 AM SGT
A ENAMELED GLASS CONJOINED SNUFF BOTTLE. 18TH CENTURY.
by H&H Brother Auction House
Est: $2,000- $3,000
$1,0001 Bid
Chinese Decorative Accessories
Oct 08, 9:00 AM EDT
Chinese Decorative Accessories
by Dovetail Auctions, LLC
Est: $5- $500
$51 Bid
SIX CARVED CHINESE SNUFF BOTTLES
Oct 25, 9:00 AM CDT
SIX CARVED CHINESE SNUFF BOTTLES
by Jackson's International
Est: $100- $150
$1001 Bid
CHINESE HARDSTONE AND DECORATVE ARTS GROUP
Oct 25, 9:00 AM CDT
CHINESE HARDSTONE AND DECORATVE ARTS GROUP
by Jackson's International
Est: $20- $50
$201 Bid
FIVE CHINESE SNUFF BOTTLES
Oct 25, 9:00 AM CDT
FIVE CHINESE SNUFF BOTTLES
by Jackson's International
Est: $20- $50
$201 Bid
10 CHINESE SNUFF BOTTLES
Oct 25, 9:00 AM CDT
10 CHINESE SNUFF BOTTLES
by Jackson's International
Est: $50- $100
$501 Bid
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AN AGATE CARVING SNUFF BOTTLE. 18TH CENTURY.
Oct 06, 9:30 AM SGT
AN AGATE CARVING SNUFF BOTTLE. 18TH CENTURY.
by H&H Brother Auction House
Est: $2,000- $3,000
$1,0001 Bid
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A TOURMALINE CARVING SNUFF BOTTLE. 19TH CENTURY.
Oct 06, 9:30 AM SGT
A TOURMALINE CARVING SNUFF BOTTLE. 19TH CENTURY.
by H&H Brother Auction House
Est: $2,000- $3,000
$1,0001 Bid
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A MALACHITE CARVING 'Bamboo' SNUFF BOTTLE. 18TH CENTURY.
Oct 06, 9:30 AM SGT
A MALACHITE CARVING 'Bamboo' SNUFF BOTTLE. 18TH CENTURY.
by H&H Brother Auction House
Est: $2,000- $3,000
$1,0001 Bid
Chinese Blue and White Snuff Bottle
Oct 22, 1:00 PM EDT
Chinese Blue and White Snuff Bottle
by Kavanagh Auctions
Est: $20- $15,000
$201 Bid
AN EROTIC PORCELAIN SNUFF BOTTLE. 9.8cm x 4.6cm
Oct 12, 9:30 AM BST
AN EROTIC PORCELAIN SNUFF BOTTLE. 9.8cm x 4.6cm
by Hannam's Auctioneers
Est: £50- £75
£101 Bid
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A ENAMELED GLASS MARBLED SNUFF BOTTLE 18TH CENTURY.
Oct 06, 9:30 AM SGT
A ENAMELED GLASS MARBLED SNUFF BOTTLE 18TH CENTURY.
by H&H Brother Auction House
Est: $1,500- $2,000
$7501 Bid
A LARGE COLLECTION OF 19TH/20TH CENTURY CHINESE SNUFF BOTTLES in various forms and sizes. (19)
Oct 13, 9:30 AM BST
A LARGE COLLECTION OF 19TH/20TH CENTURY CHINESE SNUFF BOTTLES in various forms and sizes. (19)
by Hannam's Auctioneers
Est: £100- £150
£801 Bid
"BLANC-BLEU" PORCELAIN SNUFF BOTTLE DECORATED WITH QING PERIOD FIGURES
Oct 15, 11:00 AM CEST
"BLANC-BLEU" PORCELAIN SNUFF BOTTLE DECORATED WITH QING PERIOD FIGURES
by Goldfield Auction
Est: €150- €250
€1411 Bid

Sellers Who Sell Chinese Snuff Bottles


Designer Homes of Central Florida

Designer Homes of Central Florida

Weatherham Estate Treasures

Weatherham Estate Treasures

Empire Auction House

Empire Auction House

Merces Gallery LLC

Merces Gallery LLC