Ceremonial club in the style of the Marquesas Islands - Wood - Ùu tapu - -

Ceremonial club in the style of the Marquesas Islands - Wood - Ùu tapu - -
Early 21st century - Good

The presence of the chief in his faè was identified by his spear or ùu placed at the entry of his house. Some items may have much smaller proportions and are described as the weapons of the chiefs’ sons. Missionaries report that comes sacred ùu tapu clubs were used for human sacrifices. Indeed, the missionary Stewart mentions a class of warriors named ùu, referring to their weapons, who assisted priests during sacrificial ceremonies. According to Ginoux, when the victim was alive, he would be executed with a sacred club named ùu tapu, which formerly belonged to a great warrior who died in battle.

The summit of ùu clubs is often perceived as the representation of a head with two wide eyes, a nose and a mouth. In fact, the decorative elements composing it are extremely standardised and constant: a face engraved on the forehead, with sometimes two other ones on the sides at the level of the “cutting edge”; two tiki mata for the eyes; and another tiki head in high-relief for the “nose”; shoulders to hit the enemy’s head; a plaque with arms; a pectoral motif; a band for the eyes and another one on the lower part, which is always covered with abstract motifs.

Stand included in the sale.

Lot details
Ceremonial club in the style of the Marquesas Islands
Indigenous object name
Ùu tapu
Region/ country
Early 21st century
Sold with stand
110×11×11 cm
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