North America

Human figure
Thule

Alaska

Thule Culture (Ancient Eskimo)
12th – 17th century

Carved walrus tooth
Height: 3 ½ in. (8.7 cm)

Excavated on the South coast of Tuksuk Channel,
near Teller, Alaska
Ex collection Norman Hurst, USA
Published: Arctic Ivory, 1998 p.33

Published: White Memory

Price: on request

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According to Fitzhugh et Kaplan (Inua: Spirit World of the Bering Sea Eskimo, 1982 : 156), these shamanic figurines were carved for several purposes: to stand in for people absent from the village during festivals, to avert infertility, or else to focus the attention of animal inua (spirit) during the Doll Festival, which was held to bless hunting and fishing expeditions in the coming year.