"Hoe Ceremonial Paddle Ra'ivavae Or Samoa Islands, Austral Archipelago, Polynesia"CEREMONIAL PADDLE Hoe
Ra'ivavae or Samoa Islands, Austral Archipelago, Polynesia
First half of the 19th century
H .: 119; L .: 18; Thickness: 4 cm
It is entirely engraved with geometric patterns, crescents and suns drawn in stone. The pale foliaceous has four concentric registers on the face, while the back is organized around a central ridge. At the intersection between the shovel and the handle, a double circular radiating pattern is engraved. The four-sided handle ends in a rectangular pommel animated by ten anthropomorphic figures. It would be ten dancers whose oval-shaped faces present large round and prominent eyes.
This paddle was not used for navigation but was an object of prestige.
Provenance: Collected by Thomas Laslett (1811-1887) He was a carpenter from 1833 to 1834 in New Zealand then became Controller for the Ministry of the Navy which sent him three times to New Zealand (from 1837 to 1838, from 1838 to 1841 then from 18341 to 1843) It was during one of these trips that he brought back this paddle.
Bibliography: - Reproduced in the book by Judith Miller, Miller's Antiques Handbook & Price Guide 2020-2021, Great Britain, Octopus Publishing Group Ltd., 2019, page 435. -
Reproduced on the cover of the catalog of Woolley & Wallis Auctioneers, at the occasion of the Tribal Art & Antiquities auction of September 20, 2017, as well as page 121.