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Quiver with darts

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Cultural Context: Orinoco style.

Origin: Venezuela (South America)

Medium: Vegetable fibre, Bamboo, Pigment, Gourd bark; Darts: Wood, Cotton

Technique: Stitched, Tied, Painted, Perforated, Twisted

Dimensions: Quiver: Length = 54 cm; Width = 10. cm; Darts: Length = 48 cm

Inventory no.: MAM 14996

Quiver consisting of a cylindrical bamboo frame sheathed in a palm tree inflorescence held in place by several ties made of string. This string is wound along the body at various intervals and ends at the lower end of the quiver, tightly knotting the palm sheath. Attached to the body of the quiver is a cotton-filled gourd with two holes in the mouth for the string to pass through. The exterior of the quiver is decorated with a dark reddish pigment in different geometric patterns.

This type of quiver is used to store the darts that are shot with the blowpipe during the hunt. As in this case, such quivers usually have a cord to carry them over the shoulder for easy transport. Four types of darts of different lengths are kept inside, although none is longer than 48 centimetres. Some of the dart tips are blackish in colour because they contain traces of curare, the most commonly used paralysing poison in the Amazon region. The darts usually have a tightly tied cotton wad at one end to provide sufficient resistance when the hunter blows through the mouth of the blowpipe to fire the shot. This type of quiver is still made by the Ye'kuana ethnic group (also known as Maquiritare) in the Upper Orinoco.