Calc spatula

About the object

The habit of chewing betel nuts is widespread throughout Oceania. One of the necessary ingredients is limestone chalk, which is stored and transported in pumpkin gourds. The chalk can be removed with a spatula through a small opening in the calabash. The spatulas are decorated with finely-carved motifs and part of a bride's regalia at marriage ceremonies. This spatula, as well as other objects in the Oceania collection, were collected by Wilhelm Lebahn, captain of the Imperial Navy survey ship »S.M.S. Planet«, on which the ethnologist, anthropologist and marine doctor Augustin Krämer was also travelling. The Lebahn collection was sold after his death by his brother-in-law Dr. Rudolf Plähn from Waldkirch.

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