Mar 29, 2021
Mar 29, 2021

Ancestral Tablet

Ancestral Tablet

c. 1940

Painted wood

Overall: 126.7 x 20.3 cm (49 7/8 x 8 in.)

Gift of The May Company, Cleveland 1963.555



Ancestral tablets are among the sacred objects stored in the ceremonial houses of the Papuan Gulf. Some are owned collectively, by clans, while others are the property of individuals. The tablets are used in the consecration of ceremonial houses and canoes, or in the initiation of children.

See also
Oceanic Art
Type of artwork: 
Painted wood

Contact us

The information about this object, including provenance, may not be currently accurate. If you notice a mistake or have additional information about this object, please email

To request more information about this object, study images, or bibliography, contact the Ingalls Library Reference Desk.

All images and data available through Open Access can be downloaded for free. For images not available through Open Access, a detail image, or any image with a color bar, request a digital file from Image Services.