- Indigenous name
- Associated cultural group
- Pacific > Papua New Guinea > Milne Bay Province > Alotau > Massim style
- Raw material
- Wood; lime
- H: W: 12 mm L: 360 mm D: 9 mm Circum:
Lime spatula carved from dark wood. The handle is formed by four lines carved in relief down the length of the handle and a small cylindrical section carved at the end. The spatula is incised with circles and triangles, some infilled with lime; a band of zigzags and a snake are carved in relief at the midsection. The blade has a rounded end and tapers toward the handle. Registration number 4327 marked on handle in black and white.
Betel nut chewing is a pastime known in parts of Asia and the Pacific where betel nut, the seed of the areca palm (Areca catechu), is chewed with betel leaves and lime made from burnt shell and coral. Used frequently as a mild stimulant and for medicinal purposes, the betel nut stains user's saliva, lips and teeth red. The highly carved spatulas are accessories showing rank and are often used for ornament only [ref H. Beran, Betel-chewing Equipment of East New Guinea].