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© Arnold Thuganmu Watt/Licenced by Viscopy, 2017

Larverend (bailer shell)

Date: 1990 - 1991
Dimensions:
Overall: 55 x 121 x 68 mm, 0.1 kg
Medium: Shell, ochre
Credit Line: ANMM Collection
Object Copyright: © Arnold Thuganmu Watt
Classification:Tools and equipment
Object Name: Bailer
Object No: 00015745
Place Manufactured:Mornington Island

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    Description
    A decorated bailer shell or larverend. Larverend where picked up off the beach and used to carry freshwater, clear waterholes or bail out canoes. Broken parts of the shell were used to cut up meat.
    HistoryTo continue the Australian National Maritime Museum's involvement with the Mornington Island community who were involved with the making of the raft in 1987, curators asked the chairman of the local council to talk to the older residents about what sort of objects would have been used on the raft. The Chairperson, Nelson Gavinor came back with a list of objects he said were like the a kit. These objects, including this larverend, were a coolamon (00015744) digging stick (00015747), dilly bag (00015749), fish net (00015748) and a spear thrower (00015746). Of these objects only a few are still being used.
    The objects are painted with the names of the seasons.The Lardil people did not use the names 'Autumn or Spring' but called the seasons by certain foods. A season was named after what was collected, eaten or was plentiful at that time. So that someone would say 'My child was born at turtle time' .

    The rafts, or walpas, assocaited with objects such as this were small and not very stable. It required a great deal of skill to cover any great distance at sea.The walpas became water logged after a few hours of exposure to water and had to be hauled up and dried out. This then, limited the distances that the traveller could cover without contact with land.The walpas were therefore used chiefly to 'island hop' over short distances.
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