Sign on
pendant, ivory, tabua
Date Made/Found: before 1944
Material and Medium: sperm whale tooth
Dimensions: Overall: 37 x 30 x 46mm (1 7/16 x 1 3/16 x 1 13/16in.)
Place Object Found: Fiji
Accession Number: WC232
Sperm whale tooth (tabua) carved in the form of a cowrie shell and its shape is thought to represent female genitalia. It would have been an important ceremonial object presented to a chief or other important person reflecting a token of goodwill, loyalty and reverence. Ceremonies would be related to birth, marriage, death and for the departure or return from a long journey. It was possibly made by Tongan craftsmen who moved to Fiji.
Display Location: AH2

gPowered byeMuseum

Museums Sheffield

Trying something new can be a little bit scary, but what a great feeling when you make the connection. We're trying new things all the time and we want you to try them too, so come with us and we'll help connect you with art, nature, history, ideas - and each other.

Jump in. Discover something new.

Explore our site