John Brumfit was founded in 1864 by the cigar and tobacco merchant of the same name. The company was prolific, seeing much popularity across the country. In the century and a half that the John Brumfit has existed they have produced some of the most iconic shapes in pipe smoking.
Now owned by Gawith Hoggarth, the company has employed Italian artisans to produce a range symbolic of everything the British consider a ‘Classic’ pipe. Made with Italian briar these pipes offer customers unparalleled value for money.
The Great British Classic range encompasses a large selection of pipe shapes, from the Dublin to Bulldog, Rhodesian to Prince and much more. We will pay close attention to four shapes here, outlining the reasons for their popularity and more.
John Brumfit – Straight Billiard Pipe
The straight Billiard is perhaps one of the most iconic and recognizable pipe shapes ever created. Simple yet elegant, the Billiard has a long round and straight stem/shank and a bowl that is usually medium sized.
The Billiard could be considered the Alpha as it spawned many shapes from it, most notably the Canadian and Lovat.
The smooth finish aids the pipe in showing its beautiful natural grain. This is a great pipe for starters and veterans, just remember that straight pipes are easiest to smoke indoors.
Billiards have had many famous proponents such as authors J.R.R Tolkien and C.S Lewis along with Albert Einstein.
John Brumfit – Lovat Pipe
The Lovat is a offshoot of the aforementioned Billiard pipe, bearing a few subtle differences. Most notable is that of the shank being longer than that of a Billiard and sporting a small round saddle stem.
The style was named after the Lords of Lovat. This is a title in Scotland given to the Chief of Clan Fraser and has been held by famous people such as Brigadier-General Simon Joseph Fraser whom commanded the Highland Mounted Brigade in WW1.
John Brumfit – Prince Pipe
The Prince was a design that was commissioned by Prince Albert to be made by Emil Loewe. The brief was simple, create something unique and elegant unlike any other pipe shape previously seen before.
Loewe knocked it out of the park creating what is now known as a classic.
A short round bowl and slightly bent tapered stem are the usual hallmarks of a Prince pipe. These pipes are often favored by those who like to clutch the pipe in their teeth due to its light weight and gravity-friendly shape.
John Brumfit have given this Prince pipe a nice smooth finish that adds to the charm of the pipe.
John Brumfit – Zulu Pipe
The Zulu pipe is a hybrid between two shapes, the Dublin and Billiard. An easily identifiable pipe shape, the Zulu sports a straight shank and slightly bent tapered stem.
Like the Prince pipe this shape is ideal for those seeking a hands-free smoke.
Some other companies have dubbed this shape other names like Woodstock and Yachtsman. In recent years this style has had a resurgence in popularity.