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Basket with lid
Date: Early to mid-20th century
Medium: Plant fiber, glass beads, cowrie shells
Dimensions: H x W x D: 30.5 × 27.9 × 24.1 cm (12 × 11 × 9 1/2 in.)
Credit Line: Gift of The Robbins Center for Cross Cultural Communication in memory of Warren M. Robbins
Geography: Somalia
Object Number: 2014-32-22
Search Terms:
Female use
geometric motif
Object is not currently on exhibit

The bride at a Somali wedding receives an elaborately beaded lidded basket. It is intended to hold smaill personal objects such as jewelry but at the wedding it holds treats. The groom competes with the male guests to open the basket, although since the basket symbolizes the bride, he always must win.

Lidded cylindrical pedestal basket covered in panels of geometric patterns of red, black and white glass beads. Cowrie shells hang below body of basket. Remains of cloth and beadwork straps. Colored plant fiber chevron patterns visible in the interior.

Dr. Arthur Dintenfass, Ventnor, NJ, 1987

The Robbins Center for Cross Cultural Communication, 1987 - 2014

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