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Group of 3 Choiseul currency rings Solomon IslandsMalagan "Toktok" Figure

19th Century West Australian Aboriginal Bardi Shield
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19th Century West Australian Aboriginal Bardi Shield



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19th Century West Australian Aboriginal Bardi Shield

Size 82cm x 18cm includes custom made metal stand

This superb early Bardi shield was collected in 1916 by the V Paton of the Presbyterian Mission in Western Australia. It consists of the classical zig zag design with remnants of ochre.The fluted design is heavily worn from excess use. It is unusual also to find the horizontal engraved lines to the front of the shield.

These shields are commonly referred to as Bardi shields which simple because they are made by the Bardi people of Western Australia. The Bardi themselves call the shield “marrga” They live in an  area North of Broome and parts of the Dampier Peninsula between Broome and Derby in the Kimberleys. This shield was collected on Sunday Island which lies just off the Dampier Peninsula. Kim Akerman ( anthropologist and leading authority on the Aboriginals of the Western Australia and Northern Territory ) wrote in an article for Musee Barbier Mueller that “ these shields serve primarily to ward off boomerangs, the principle weapon used for settling disputes on the Dampier Peninsula.”  This is a museum quality shield of considerable age.

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Last Updated: Thursday, 22 February 2018 08:48