English Snuffs

English Snuffs

After embracing the enlightenment, civilizing the Western world and establishing English culture, the good people of Great Britain develop a penchant for the good life. Among the developing affections was tobacco and the English undertook the task of raising tobacco to its ultimate glory. Nasal snuff was elevated to the rank of a social signal. The pleasure derived from the sniffing of tobacco had become a sublime decadence. The demand was of an unprecedented nature and some privileged individuals began manufacturing the powdered pleasure.

18th Century Snuffer

The amazing growth of this industry helped perpetrate a plethora of varieties. The manufacturing process began to develop techniques to up sell their products and the best of these was the addition of flavoring. There were the obvious differences between tobacco terroirs that produced from earthy to floral tobacco. Depth and method of fermentation, recipes of special blends and the increasing demand for special essences became paramount. The obvious favorites were, because of tobacco's believed medicinal properties, menthol, camphor and eucalyptus. The gamut extended to include combinations of natural perfumes including, bergamot, wallflower and rose.

 The English Snuff Mill at Morden Hall Park, Merton, London

 The naming of snuffs began to be obsessed with the seal of royal approval: King's Morning Mixture, Prince's Special or Royal George to name a few. The appeal of foreign and exotic places was appreciated in the nomenclature of popular nasal snuffs: French Prize, Buenos Ayres, Strasbourgh, Tabac de Rouen, Bordeaux, Spanish Bran, but to name a few. The appeal of this desirable habit was slowly descending from royalty to the common man. The privilege of producing snuff was now in the hands of the entrepreneur rather than by royal decree. The consumption of powdered snuff went from nobility to working man within a few decades in the 18th century and remained popular until the market turned around with slick advertising that dissuaded the snuffers and shifted from absorption through the nose to intake through the lungs. Smoking had dethroned the prized snuff tin for the packaged tobacco cylinders.

Selection of Popular English Snuffs

The circle has been completed and snuff has now become a viable alternative to smoking with a much less noxious health profile. The rekindling of traditional tobacco use and snuff taking has reinvented the industry. Today English snuffs are among the most enjoyed and identifiable brands on the global market today. The competition is stiff, but the English tobacconist can be proud of his offerings. Here is a list of English snuffs you may wish to consider.

PS: Be sure to find out more about snuffing by checking out my posts on German, South African and Indian snuffs as well.

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