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Canoe Bailer - Tiheru or Tata

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Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery

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Basic Information

Accession Number:1951A19.63
Collection:Ethnography - Oceania
Date:1880 c - 1880 c


Bailers, known as 'tiheru' or 'tata', are practical objects, removing water from canoes when on the sea or on rivers.Although these objects are very functional (the handle projects forward to exert the less strain on the wrist) they are also very delicately carved. War canoes, and everything associated with them, are very sacred to the Maori people. They represent the body of an ancestor and are created and used with pride and ceremony.


Transferred from the Wellcome Historical Medical Museum.

Further Information

Production Period:19th century
Medium:Hand carved and inlaid.
Place of Origin:Wanganui, New Zealand


Height:445 mm
Width:220 mm