Comb with two animal heads
This comb has a pair of animal heads surmounting the handle; the species is not identifiable. The shallow engraving appears on one side only and the two recesses were almost certainly for large beads, now lost. It is comparable to a comb collected by Nelson on Sledge Island, off the coast of western Alaska (see Fitzhugh and Kaplan, 1982:145). However, although Nelson collected his material between 1877 and 1881, a number of the objects, probably including the comb, were archaeological material predating the nineteenth century, which the local Inuit had found in pre-historic house foundations.
Steven Hooper, 1997
Entry taken from Robert and Lisa Sainsbury Collection, Vol. 2: Pacific, African and Native North American Art, edited by Steven Hooper (Yale University Press, 1997) p. 235.
Purchased by the Sainsbury Centre, University of East Anglia from Jonathan Holstein, New York on the advice of Robert Sainsbury in 1979 out of funds provided by the Robert and Lisa Sainsbury Trust.
Not on display
Title/Description: Comb with two animal heads
Object Type: Comb
Measurements: h. 92 x w. 32 x d. 5 mm
Accession Number: 717
Historic Period: 18th century or earlier
Credit Line: Purchased with support from the Robert and Lisa Sainsbury Trust, 1979