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Wooden bird carving from model of five-part outrigger canoe

Date: c 1945
Overall: 82 x 32 x 17 mm, 9.27 g
Medium: Wood, pigment
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Gift from Ernest A Flint
Classification:Vessels and fittings
Object Name: Bird carving
Object No: 00046789
Place Manufactured:Madang

User Terms

    This wooden bird carving comes from the wooden model of a five-part outrigger canoe. The canoe came from the Mandang region of New Guinea. The bird is decorated with white and black pigment.
    SignificanceThis model canoe is representative of a five-part single outrigger canoe. In the local Mandang language it is called a 'balangut'. The donor served in the US Army Small Ships Service.
    HistoryThe owner related that this canoe was a model of a 'lakatoi' which he exchanged for two tins of spam in Madang (mid-north coast PNG) in 1944. He said he saw the canoes sailing there and their sailors were taken on as pilots for the US Army Small ships.

    'Lakatoi' according to most sources is a large native trading vessel made up of three or more dugout hulls, using quite a different type of sail, specific to the SOUTH coast of PNG, therefore not the type of vessel depicted by the model. It is thought that the term became generalised to mean 'any native seagoing boat' to Europeans.

    This model has been confirmed by Haddon & Hornell (Canoes of Oceania) as representing types from the vicinity of Madang.

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