Full Image and Description Manuscript Catalog
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MODEL, SEA TURTLE NET
ASIAN ETHNOGRAPHIC COLLECTION
 
Catalog No: 70.0/ 3508
Locale: MENTAWEI
Country: INDONESIA
Material: BAMBOO, WOOD, CORD, PLANT FIBER
Dimensions: NET) L:132 W:20 H:5 COVER) L:54 W:12 H:6.5 (in CM)
Acquisition Year: 1927 [GIFT]
Donor: GUGGENHEIM BROS
Keywords: MODEL NET
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This is a model of a djarik, or a ceremonial net used by the Mentaweian peoples of the Pagai Islands in Indonesia for hunting sea turtles. The net has anchors on the bottom and wooden floaters on the top to keep it in place in the ocean. Although sea turtles were not a regular part of the Mentaweians’ diet, hunting them was a central component of Mentaweian religious festivals in the early 1900s when ethnologists described them. The djarik was a sacred ritual object used only for such occasions. The Mentaweians believed that if they did not treat the net with great care both in its storage and use, then the hunt would be unsuccessful. For example, fisherman were forbidden from becoming angry while using the djarik because this would make the djarik angry, and then it might refuse to catch turtles.


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