Aug 26, 2010
Aug 26, 2010




Wood, copper, glass beads, sinew, leather, and thread

Overall: 20.3 cm (8 in.)

Leonard C. Hanna, Jr. Fund 2010.199


Mothers often used long-stemmed pipes like this because they helped direct smoke away from the babies they carried on their backs. Carved by men, pipes were used by both men and women. A female maker added beaded fringe using a color scheme typical of Xhosa beadwork. The miniature apron suspended from the fringe suggests a woman’s garment, and thus ownership of this pipe. Social and leisure practices, smoking and snuffing tobacco were also associated with the ancestors and with ideas of fertility and procreation. Inherited between individuals and families, pipes have connected clans and generations and thus linked the worldly present with the ancestral past.

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