Risque Snuff Boxes

Snuff was taken by a wide range of people and in the early 19th century it had become an important part of both a man and ladies attire. Boxes were designed to keep snuff at its peak flavour with a low moisture and air content .

There was a huge variety of snuff boxes varying in shape, material and size. One sector in high demand were risque snuff boxes with nude images or figures hidden within the box . These boxes were often very subtle with images or figures found on the inside of the lid. Puzzle boxes were made having double lids, so that the images/figures were only seen by the owner. In prisons toys and snuff boxes which opened to reveal figures of ladies or men displaying their charms were made by prisoner of war to meet the large demand. However a hard line was taken in prisons on production of these items, hence the figural snuff boxes are very rare. Troops would be sent into prisons and would break up and destroy the work benches of anyone producing these items!!!

The images below are of a coffin shaped snuff box with a dummy lid to the top and the base lid that pivot open for snuff to be stored. In the middle there are two brass handles one pulls outl a drawer to reveal a carved naked wooden man!

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We first became involved in Antique Treen and furniture some twenty five years ago and since then a passion for Treen, small wooden snuff boxes and decorative wooden items has developed into Opus Antiques.

This web site shows only a  small selection of our current stock for sale, if you are looking for something you don't see, please contact us.


We are also interested in buying Antique Treen items. As well as using our Contact page, you can also email or telephone us on 07941 285532


The word Treen is derived from the word tree and is a term used to describe wooden household objects, all turned from one piece of wood e.g. a bowl, plate, gingerbread mould, and spoons, always having a function.

Nowadays when we talk about Antique Treen it tends to cover all small wooden items including antique snuff boxes, candle stands, spice towers, etc. often made from several pieces of turned wood.


When a piece of wood has been painstakingly turned or carved, handled, polished and loved over a few hundred years old, it can develop a wonderful colour and patina and becomes an irresistible piece of Antique Treen.

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Address: Bath, Somerset       Contact Telephone: 07941 285532       Email:  sally.honey@icloud.com