African Antique Milk Bottle Gourd Beaded Leather Suede

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  • Item Category: Ethnic, Folk & Native American Art
  • Source: eBay
  • Sold Date: Apr 24,2011
  • Channel: Online Auction

African Antique Milk Bottle Gourd Beaded with Suede Leather

The bead work made me think this Antique Bottle Container Gourd was Native American Indian, but after some research, it is apparently East African from the Maasai, a tribal nomadic people of Kenya and Tanzania, made in Africa between 1800 through the 1900s.

The gourd is said to carry milk, blood, or water, and when broken, repaired and used for years. The inside was sterilized by burning. The gourd is made from a squash like vegetable that is also used to make musical instruments and art.

At some point long ago, this gourd cracked, I am guessing, and was repaired with suede leather wrapped around it and thumbtacks pushed in to hold it together. Now, the suede is very much attached to the gourd, so I don't want to mess with it or remove the old thumbtacks for fear of damaging it. Lots of time and care into the making of this gourd.

Prices on a gourd like this, I have seen range from $60 to $600.

Interesting piece!

MEASURES: 18 inches (46 cm) long and 12 inches (30 cm) at its widest.

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