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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi,

I came across this beautiful cane and I would like to know what kind of wood it is made of. I think it may be rosewood but I am not sure.

Thank You,

Dennis
 

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Looks like Briar, but hard to say positively
Your comment prompted me to do a bunch of searching. When I was a kid, one of my friends' dad was a pipe smoker. I was admiring his pipe collection, and asked what the beautiful wood was. He said "briar." The only briar I knew of was from the old story about "Brer Rabbit and the Briar Patch." I ask him what a briar was, and he said it was a kind of rose. As I grew up, the kinds of briars I encountered were mostly red and black raspberries, which are related to roses, and whose canes are much like the branches of rose bushes.

When I was in scouts, and looking for something to carve for a neckerchief slide, I got a piece of rose bush root from a neighbor who was digging one up. Nothing like pipe briar. Later, I dug up some raspberries, and was again disappointed.

When you mentioned briar, I began searching. Much to my surprise, I found that briar also referred to an evergreen found mostly in the mediterranean basin, and also to smaller shrubs called heaths and heathers. No wonder I never found a piece of wood anything like pipe briar.

Learn something new every day.
 

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Yeah, I searched for sources of briar or brier canes and found nada, but that is what I always see them referenced as. *SHRUG*
 

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It looks like a vintage congo chestnut to me.

http://www.walking-canes.net/congoeffectchestnutcrook.aspx

Quote:

"The congo effect is produced by pinching the growing chestnut stick at intervals along its length, a year before it is due to be harvested. The wounds then grow over. When the stick is harvested, the bark is removed to reveal the knobbly cane underneath."

http://www.james-smith.co.uk/productitems.cfm?catname=country-bark-and-cane-sticks

http://www.canesgalore.com/images/9017400.jpg
 

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Definitely not Gorse (at least in my opinion) but the pictures of Jersey Cabbage make me re-think my suggestion of either Hawthorn or Blackthorn.
I also doubt that it is hawthorn or blackthorn.

The knobs are too numerous and quite regularly spaced, and also have a raised edge, suggesting either an attachment point of a leaf stalk or a man-made scar.

The cut thorns should result in a smoother surface.

Furze (gorse) has a range of appearance. The links I found look different from the OP's cane, but I have seen antique furze sticks which resemble it quite well.

There is also a possibility that it is yet a different plant, not mentioned yet.

Victorian era canes were made of a bewildering variety of materials.
 

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My two Choke Cherry walking sticks are quite nubbly, and are similar in color if all the inner bark is not removed. Quite a bit of research involved here, it's facsinating. Gotta go follow a few more links....
 

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Don't sue me if I'm wrong, but I think briar is not only used for briar pipes, but I have the impression it's another name for blackthorne. I have a stick that looks quite similar. It has a nasty knob at the top end and would probably make a proper shillalegh, if was a fightin' man. I don't actually use it because it only has a rather small metal ferrule at the walking end and considering my age and condition, I can't afford to slip and fall down. But it looks nice in the jar with other canes and umbrellas.
 

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(1) There is loads of briar in Scotland and (2) Briar is most definitely not another name for Blackthorn - no relation at all - only similarity are the thorns!
 
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