- Indigenous name
- Associated cultural group
- Pacific > Papua New Guinea > Sandaun (West Sepik) Province > Unknown > Wamiro
- Acquisition date
- January 01, 1951
- Acquisition method
- Donated by Sister Dorothea Tomkins
- Raw material
- Wood; pigment
- H: W: 38 mm L: 345 mm D: 12 mm Circum:
Lime spatula carved from light wood. The handle is formed with a circle at the end with adjacent O, V and U shapes stacked and incised with circles, triangles and curvilinear designs in-filled with red and white pigment. The blade is flat with a pointed end and tapers toward the handle. Registration number 4582 marked on blade in white and black.
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].