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The single-owner collection brought €130,000 (£90,000) hammer and included a wide range of French pipes and pipe-bowls in clay, wood and meerschaum, but it was the ivory pipe bowl from Dieppe (c.1700), shown top right, that topped the sale.

Similar to a model in France’s SEITA (national tobacco) museum, it took a triple-estimate €9500 (£6550).

The Tajan bowl took the form of a woman in a ruff with grapes in her hair, with an adjoining horn-of-plenty ringed with exquisitely worked vine-leaves, grapes and fruit; the base of the bowl was shaped like an eagle’s head.

Meerschaum pipes dominated the Vienna sale, and there was another 170 of them available here.

Leading price was a double-estimate €4000 (£2750) on a delicately carved pipe with amber shaft by Krebs of Paris, the bowl in the form of a full-length dancing court-jester or Triboulet in ruff, doublet and striped hose, bottom right. A short, 37-lot section devoted to porcelain and ceramic pipes yielded 16 bids above the €1000 (£690) mark, mostly for pipe bowls made by German porcelain factories (Meissen, Berlin, Kloster, Veilsdorf, Nymphenburg, Volkstedt, Limbach).

Single highest price among this group was the above-estimate €3800 (£2600) bid for a 1774 Meissen model by Kändler of an Oriental lady in a gaily coloured plumed turban.

Two similar models can be found in German museum collections, though not, claimed the catalogue, with colours quite so bright.