Hearst Museum Portal

Necklace

Museum number:
11-623
Permalink:
ark:/21549/hm21110000623
Accession number:
Acc.18 and Acc.25
Object count:
1
Description:
Braided human hair and ivory hook.
Donor:
Phoebe Apperson Hearst
Collection place:
Hawaiian Islands
Verbatim coll. place:
Hawaii
Culture or time period:
Hawaiian
Collector:
Phoebe Apperson Hearst
Collection date:
unknown
Taxon:
Odobenus rosmarus
Object type:
ethnography
Function:
3.1 Status Objects and Insignia of Office
Accession date:
December 15, 1901 and November 26, 1901
Department:
Human Remains
Comment:
Description: "Neck ornament - "lei niho palaoa" (whale tooth necklace) Symbol of high rank; insignia of great importance Hawaiian "LEI"-"necklace"-"NIHO"-"tooth" "PALAOA"-"ivory". The lei niho palaoa "was" for high and highest ranking "ali'i" and "al'i nei (chiefs and ruling chiefs). There was a large chiefly class in Hawai'i." (fide Barbara (Kanani) Burns, May 1983) Blue card: "The whale's tooth and human hair necklace ("lei niho palaoa") was a form peculiar to Hawaii. At the time of contact with Europeans the pendants were also made from stone and wood, and walrus tusks were introduced in the early 1800's. The "lei niho palaoa" purportedly was restricted to the highest class, but the large number of specimens in museums makes this seem unlikely, at least for the post-contact period. This example has a walrus tusk pendant. (UCLMA 11-623)" Remarks: "Exhibited 1978 Settlement of Polynesia See Hiroa, Te Rangi (Peter Buck) 1957 "Arts and Crafts of Hawaii" pp. 535-538, fig. 332, p. 536
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