Via Boing Boing, a cane from about 1900 with a naturalistic skull carved from ivory sold on eBay:
On top of a long & slender rosewood shaft we find a knob shaped ivory handle boasting the portrayal of a human skull. Due to the complete set of 32 teeth and the count Dracula style collar that is visible at his neck it appears as if the skull was proudly grinning and alive, adding a mythical and slightly humorous note to this fine artwork.
The skull cap is hinged and can be opened up revealing a hollow container where small items such as money coins, medicine or tobacco can be safely stored. The hinges, the collar and the small globules on the jacket collar are made of silver.
The ivory portrait of the skull is highly expressive and very neatly executed with immaculate attention for anatomical detail such as the nose, the eyeholes, the cheekbones or the teeth. Especially remarkable is the naturalistic surface of the skull – the artist achieved to create a real bone texture with delicately incised indentations and skullcap joints.