University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology
Object Number:97-120-571
Current Location: Collections Storage
Culture:Samoan
Provenience: Samoa Islands
Upolu
Date Made: Circa 1840
Early Date: 1830
Late Date: Circa 1840
Section:Oceanian
Materials:Wood
Technique:Carved
Height: 11 cm
Width: 31.2 cm
Outside Diameter:31.2 cm
Credit Line:Gift of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia, 1997
Other Number:L-120-571 - Old Museum Number
10602 - ANSP Number

Description

Round, shallow wood bowl with four legs. Triangular lug with two holes for a hanging cord. Light-colored patina on bottom of inside, from use. Small rim crack with native plant fiber mend. Kava (the crushed leaves of a pepper plant, Piper methysticum, mixed with water, was and is ceremonially consumed in many parts of Melanesia, Polynesia and Micronesia. Ritual surrounding kava consumption includes placement of the kava bowl in relation to participants, seating of particiipants, and order in which the drink is served to them. Modern Samoan kava bowls have many legs, but early examples like this one have only four.


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