1953 Dunhill Dead Root Root Briar, Smooth Straight Billiard Briar Pipe, English Estates [SOLD OUT]


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To veteran pipe smokers, Dunhill needs no introduction. Beginning in 1907, Alfred Dunhill began selling Dunhill pipes at the tobacconist shop he owned on London’s Duke Street. Very quickly, these pipes gained the reputation of being the ‘Rolls-Royce’ of pipes due to how expertly crafted they were. Today, Dunhill is likely Britain’s most famous pipe manufacturer, and continues to produce some of the most treasured pipes a smoker can buy.

Beginning somewhere around 1910-1915, Dunhill stamped pipes that exhibited exceptionally straight grain with the ‘DR’ nomenclature. This stood for ‘Dead Root’ and featured pipes with the very best briar Dunhill sourced. This 1953 DRR (Dead Root, Root Briar finish) shows what that looked like in practice, its bowl showing 360 degrees of natural, straight grain (as well as a rim covered in bird’s-eyes), highlighted by a light blonde stain so as to leave the grain in as natural a state as possible. While Dunhill would later adopt a grading system for Dead Roots (letters ascending from ‘A’ at some point in the 1950s and stars in 1974), this pipe predates that system. Instead, it is a Root Briar Dead Root, as Dead Root pipes were initially only made in the Bruyere finish. As this pipe not only attained the Dead Root qualification, but also earned a Root Briar finish, I imagine it must have been an extraordinary specimen for the time. The pipe has been well preserved for its age, with only a couple of minor scuffs on the bowl exterior and some darkening on its rim. The previous owner was clearly very careful with it.

For reference, the nomenclature on the pipe is as follows:



MADE IN ENGLAND 3 (3 underlined)

PAT. N° 417574    1


Length: 5.5″

Bowl Width: 18.9mm

Bowl Depth: 1.45″

Weight: 0.8oz / 23g

Additional information

Weight 15 oz
Condition Used


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