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Enquiry from Online Galleries regarding "A Rare Bering Sea Inuit Walrus Ivory Labret carved with a Walrus Man"
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Look at what I found on the Online Galleries website!
and two small miniature Inuit carved walrus ivory shamans figurines
18th Century or earlier
Size: both 4 cm high – 1½ ins high and 5 cm long – 2 ins long
Throughout life the slits were stretched by increasing the size of the labret which displayed information concerning sex, status and origin. This labret most probably acted as a special hunting charm or amulet which the hunter would have worn for strength and protection. In the Eskimo, all encompassing, spiritual world every object was imbued with 'Inua' or spirit and amulets were elaborately developed in relationship to the hunt.
The shaman was a key figure in western Eskimo society able to control supernatural beings and forces. He was assisted in his duties by helping spirits in the form of figural amulets that represented guardian spirits acquired during a vigil or vision quest. These figurines were made from walrus ivory and bone or wood or sometimes stone.
|Height||4.00 cm||(1.57 inches)|