Matankor peoples, Manus Island, Admiralty Islands
Wood, frigate-bird feathers, glass beads, cuscus teeth, cloth, fiber
Raymond and Laura Wielgus Collection
Indiana University Art Museum, 76.40
Throughout the Admiralty Islands, part of
a warrior's preparation for battle included donning a war charm to
increase his courage and protect him in battle. The charm was tied
with a short cord to the nape of the neck so the carved head looked
out behind the warrior and the feathers curved away from his back.
On this one, the presence of glass beads is a clear indication of
outside influence, for they were not made by indigenous peoples anywhere
in Polynesia, Micronesia, Melanesia, or Australia.