A MARUPAI ELEMA CHARM

Papuan Gulf Province, Papua New Guinea

Coconut shell
Nr: 47064
Label: ”Charm British 843 New Guinea”
12 x 9 cm

This magical charm ”marupai” produced by the Elema people contained the owner’s spirit familiar, most likely a creature of the forest. These charms were worn around the neck in small baskets.
They were primarily made for initiated men, however, some women could be granted permission to own one. Magical substances (aromatic bark, seeds, bone) were put in the charm’s open mouth. With spells cast, the charm were seen to be able to fly: the spirit within could assist in a hunt, protect against illness or, when used by a sorcerer, kill enemies.

Price:  €  850,=