A Tutsi(?) Wooden Milk Pail and Goblet
Country Of Origin
Great Lakes of Central Africa
Early 20th century
21.5 x 42 cms (8½ x 16½ ins)
This unusual, large milk pail has a monumental presence. The design is simple but practical, the goblet, turned upside down, serves as its lid. The protruding lip is decorated with a simple zig-zag design in common with many other quotidian objects of the African Great Lakes Region. We are not aware of another similar example.
The tribes of this fertile region were traditionally pastoralists for whom the ownership of cattle was the measure of their wealth and social standing. There are complex customs and taboos associated with cattle and milk production; vessels used for milk were almost always made of wood and young men did the milking
This item must have been collected as new, sometime in the first half of the 20th century. It surfaced in Belgium like so many other artifacts from Central Africa do. It does not have a natural patina; it is has been stained and varnished in the manner of many objects acquired by European colonials.
Price on request