Headhunter's Charm
Naga, Tribal HIlls of India
Late 19th/Early 20th Century
Previous Collection: Private Collection in England

Small wooden heads worn around the neck or attached to basketry were used to represent the headhunting endeavors of the Naga people; and authentic examples are rare. This is a true headhunting trophy signifying an actual human being that was slain during a raid of a rival clan. This example is carved from hardwood with a deep encrusted patina. The expression is somewhat enigmatic it possesses a toothy smile reminiscent of a macabre death's face mask. The top of the charm is nicely rounded and the ears are delineated and pierced; one of the ears shows heavy surface wear abrasion as well as the back of the head; suggesting this was attached via the pierced ears. Noteworthy is the fact that the more heads worn or owned gave a male power and prestige in the headhunting times of the Naga people.

This charm stands 3.25 inches tall.
IN 11-6-12/ SOLD