Leader Board Ad

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Guess the Gadget- Hint: It's a Griffen, but it's not Peter Griffen

If I have a super power, I would guess that it is the ability to find the ridiculous amidst the amazing. 
This brass whichamacallit was found at an estate sale in South Kent, CT in September. The sale was a unique old farm house with wide board floors and a fireplace in every room. 
This oddity was sitting in a box of medical supplies, but I was told that this has no bearing on it's purpose or origin.
It is approximately four inches high, and fairly substantial. My first guess was a drawer pull. You can see that the beak forms a hole through which a chain or metal ring could be placed. However, the weight of the piece and the size ring it might accept would be an over-match as a drawer pull. 
The bottom is flat and there are no maker's marks or writing. Is it a chess piece? A pill crusher? It looks like the head of a Griffen, I am hoping someone can help me identify it. 


  1. I would bet you came closest when you asked whether it could be a "pill crusher." My best bet would be that this is a pestle from a brass mortar-and-pestle set (google Image search the words, and note how similar the shapes are, though I didn't see any with animal heads on them. That at least would explain why it was in a box of medical items.

    The closest I could find on a web search tonight was at eBay -


    but the heads are on the handles of the mortar, not on the pestle.

    btw - since griffins have the head of an eagle and body of lion and this is only a head, I think searching eagle or bird will be more productive than searching for griffin-related art objects.

    good luck


  2. It looks to me to be a pipe tamper. Go and Google antique pipe stamper and you will see a lot of them with the very same shape to their blunt end.


Found something unique? See something here you want to know more about? Start the discussion - I'll respond. Really!