The shank of this lure hook represents the body of a fish with small mouth and prominent gills. The tail is grooved longitudinally to receive the snood binding for the line; the holes for eyes and point are straight drilled. This example closely resembles an antler hook illustrated by Giddings (1968: pl. 31), which was dated to c. AD 1300. Lure hooks were used for autumn and winter fishing through holes in the ice. The point seems of more recent manufacture than the shank, and may be a replacement.
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. 237.
Purchased by the Sainsbury Centre, University of East Anglia from Arbutus Limited on the advice of Robert Sainsbury in 1980 out of income from the Sainsbury Purchasing Fund.
Not on display
Title/Description: Fish hook
Object Type: hook
Materials: Walrus ivory
Measurements: h. 42 x w. 19 x l. 146 mm
Accession Number: 736
Historic Period: 13th/14th century
Credit Line: Purchased with support from Robert and Lisa Sainsbury, 1980