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Between and Mortarboard


UMMA Object Specific Fields






Query builder

Container

Accession Number
2000/2.36

Title
Container

Artist(s)

Object Creation Date
circa 1890-1920

Medium & Support
brass, glass beads, string, and wood

Dimensions
4 15/16 in x 1 15/16 in (12.54 cm x 4.92 cm)

Credit Line
Gift of Dr. James and Vivian Curtis

Subject matter
This object is listed as made by Kirdi peoples; while most likely correct, it is not without issue. “Kirdi”, meaning pagan, was the label given to the various peoples from northern Cameroon, northeastern Nigeria, and southern Chad by neighboring Fulani and Kanuri peoples because they did not practice Islam, while the latter do. The people collectively known as “Kirdi” are actually many different cultural groups with their own customs. However, due to a lack of information on where exactly this object came from, it is not possible to say with certainty which group of people created it.

Cast from brass, snuff—or tobacco—containers were once prestige items. They are part of a group of objects related to smoking, including brass pipes and powder horns.

References Cited: 
Gebauer, Paul. 1979. Art of Cameroon. Portland, Or.: Portland Art Museum. 
Lembezat, Bertrand. 1961. Les populations païennes du Nord-Cameroun et de l'Adamaoua. Paris: Presses Universitaires de France.
Lembezat, Bertrand. 1952. Mukulehe; un clan montagnard du Nord-Cameroun; coutumes, rites, croyances. Paris: Berger-Levrault.
Northern, Tamara. 1984. The Art of Cameroon. Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution. 
Page, Donna. 2007. A Cameroon World. New York: QCC Art Gallery Press.

Physical Description
A cast brass container with a round body and a short neck. The stopper is connected to the bottle by a string with brass, yellow, and blue beads. The body of the container is decorated with a grid-like pattern and an undulating line around the top and bottom edge. The top edge of the neck has a rope or braid-like pattern. 

Primary Object Classification
Decorative Arts

Primary Object Type
snuff bottle

Collection Area
African

Rights
If you are interested in using an image for a publication, please visit http://umma.umich.edu/request-image for more information and to fill out the online Image Rights and Reproductions Request Form. Keywords
beads
bottle
smoking (activity)
snuff containers
tobacco (material)

& Author Notes

All Rights Reserved