Hawaiian Black Basalt Stone Poi Pounder of phallic form 'Pohaku Kui' Ai'

Hawaiian Black Basalt Stone Poi Pounder of phallic form 'Pohaku Kui' Ai'

1800 to 1900 Hawaii

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A Rare Large Hawaiian Black Basalt Stone Poi Pounder of phallic form 'Pohaku Kui' Ai'
1st half 19th Century

Size: 20.5cm high, 15cm wide – 8 ins high, 6 ins wide
Provenance: Ex New York Private collection
Ex American Private collection
Taro corm was cooked, peeled and then mashed on a wooden board with stone pounders having a single columnar grip such as this. Arduous pounding produced a thick, tacky paste, which after being diluted with water and allowed to ferment for a few days became 'poi'. The upper terminal knob prevents the hand from slipping upward when the pounder is grasped by the neck, and these large heavy pounders were probably used in the preliminary stages of breaking down the whole taro tubbers. The pounding of taro to make poi was only done by men.
Medium
Basalt
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