South African Zulu Carved and Decorated Bone and Horn Snuff Spoons

South African Zulu Carved and Decorated Bone and Horn Snuff Spoons

1800 to 1900 South Africa

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Three South African Zulu Carved and Decorated Bone and Horn Snuff Spoons
19th Century

Sizes: a: 26.5cm long – 10½ ins long
b: 29cm long – 11½ ins long
c: 37.5cm long – 14¾ ins long
Provenance: Ex Private collection of the late Anthony (Toby) Jack

Snuff taking was enjoyed by both sexes and by people of all ages amongst the Zulu nation, although smoking was restricted to men and older women. Snuff was made by grinding home grown and dried tobacco leaves, sometimes with the addition of the ash of charred aloe leaves as it made the snuff stronger. Cannabis was also used, especially for communal ceremonial occasions. These elegant spoons were regarded in a similar way to jewellery, as personal property, and were often worn as hairpins by young Zulu men in their elaborate hairstyles.

Medium
Horn
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