Antique 18th Century French Wooden Tabac Sign | ANTIQUES.CO.UK |
 

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    18th century french wooden tabac sign

    18th Century French Wooden Tabac Sign
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    Antique 18th Century French Wooden Tabac Sign

    This is an amazing and incredibly rare wooden French Tabac Sign (carotte rouge),

     
    It is hand carved wood with TABAC raised, it is obviously well worn from being outside for a couple of hundred years, where it was once painted a beautiful red this has now almost entirely gone, there is a picture showing a lower section that would have been the most shielded from the weather whilst hung that retains some of the original paint.
     
    This sign has to be one of the very first produced and its the only one I have ever seen.
     
    The symbol for a Bureau de Tabac is called a carotte rouge (red carrot) and has been the obligatory sign for these specialist shops selling cigarettes and tobacco since 1906.
     
    Modern signs are more in the shape of an elongated diamond, but they have always been linked to a carrot.
     
    One common reason given to explain the shape and name of this iconic French shop sign is the old practice of using carrots to keep tobacco moist.
     
    However, the more likely explanation is that in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries chewing tobacco was sold in rolls of compressed leaves in a shape similar to that of a carrot. The user then had to grate the tobacco.
     
    The first Bureaux de Tabacs opened in 1716, shortly after the arrival of tobacco in France in the mid-16th century. It was introduced by the French ambassador to Portugal, Jean Nicot, who grew tobacco in his garden.
     
    Wooden Tabac measures 17x5" - Overall with the metal arm 24"

    Antiques.co.uk Ref: 5VPFX94F

    Width (cm):
    13.0
    Height (cm):
    43.0

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    99 curiosities international ltd

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