Melanesian New Caledonian Carved Hardwood ‘Penis’ War Club ‘Buat’
Melanesian New Caledonian Carved Hardwood ‘Penis’ War Club ‘Buat’
Melanesian New Caledonian Carved Hardwood ‘Penis’ War Club ‘Buat’

Melanesian New Caledonian Carved Hardwood ‘Penis’ War Club ‘Buat’

1800 to 1900 New Caledonia

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A Melanesian New Caledonian Carved Hardwood ‘Penis’ War Club ‘Buat’
The distinctive flange shaped butt with old plaited coir sinnet grip
Tattoo markings to the head
Natural highly polished smooth silky patina
Early 19th Century

Size: 87cm long - 34¼ ins long

See: Finch & Co catalogue no. 11, items no. 79, and 80 for other examples
Despite the very lethal look of these clubs, Captain Cook on his second Pacific Voyage experienced very little hostility from the indigenous people of New Caledonia. Men brought their weapons to sell and trade for European goods, especially metal axe heads, and Cook spent two weeks on New Caledonia collecting ethnographica.
Completely encircled by barrier reefs, New Caledonia is mountainous with peaks rising to 5000 feet. The natural flora is outstandingly rich in unique species indicating a prolonged period of isolation since remote geological time. The fruit bat or flying fox was the sole resident mammal before the arrival of man. Unlike other areas of Melanesia, a system of hereditary chieftainship operated and although many diverse dialects were spoken there was a general cultural homogeneity throughout the area.
Medium
Wood
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