Many different types of lighters were made during the Victorian era. They were useful home objects that could spark a conversation or just decorate the table or shelf. This example is a finely carved one in the shape of a dog’s head. The top of the head opens to reveal the brass mechanism.
The carving is detailed enough to show whiskers, a large nose and two perky, pointed ears. The inset glass eyes give it a more realistic appearance.
Although the lighter appears to have all that is needed to light one’s cigarette or cigar, I have not attempted to restore it so that it fully functions. While it is often said that form follows function, in this case, at least for the collector, it is the form that counts most. In any case, the brass fuel container is removable.
The condition of the carving itself is excellent. It has a rich, brown color and a nice, soft, glowing patina. The long brass hinge operates well. I have had the carving professionally restored and polished so that it is ready to display.
This is a rare and unique item that would be an interesting addition to anyone’s collection.
It measures 3-3/4 inches high to the ear tips and about 4 inches wide from the back of the head to the tip of the nose.
Victorian Table Lighter in the Form of a Dog