Summary

This ornament was worn by a young girl for a ceremony that marked reaching puberty. It was collected by Baldwin Spencer who was hosted on Bathurst and Melville Islands in 1911 by the legendary buffalo shooter, Joe Cooper. The two men had met the year before in Darwin, and their collaboration resulted in over a thousand objects being collected, mainly from Tiwi people on the islands, but also from mainlanders, in particular Iwadja people who worked directly for Cooper on his lugger and in his camp. Spencer is known to have purposely purchased a bolt of coloured cloth in Darwin to take with him on this trip to use as a commodity of exchange. No doubt he also traded for important artefacts with sticks of tobacco.

Physical Description

An oblong shaped form coated in resin, most likely beeswax, into which tufts of dog hair, probably from a dingo, are embedded. Lengths of human hair string are attached to both ends.

Local Name

Arntuma or Kurupurraka

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