Ritual tin „punaham”

Object Ritual tin “punamhan“
Culture Ifugao, Luzon, Philippines
Time 19th century
Dimensions Height 19 cm, width 15cm, length 50cm
Material Wood, colour layer, shells
Supplementing Literature Back to room view

The box is made of wood with two stylised heads attached to it. The lid with the opening for a spoon rests on the bottom part. These ritual boxes were used by the Ifugao in rituals that were supposed to produce a rich rice harvest. After each ritual, the remains of the materials used were left in the box. In some Ifugao villages, Chinese reed stalks were used for healing rituals in the box, but also to record the number of pigs used to pay for the rice fields connected to the ritual box.

Different boxes and cans made from massive wood are used from the Igorots for ritual and profane purpose. The shamans used to store their utensiles in boxes which are decorated with figures like dogs or lizards. Profane boxes are used for the storage of jewelry, tobacco or betel nut cutlery. Often the boxes are decorated with good fortune amulets in high relief carvings.