Thule Figure

Archives | Alaska

Thule Figure

Alaska

Thule Culture
(Ancient Eskimo)

12th – 17th century
Carved walrus tooth
Height: 2 in. (5.3 cm)

Collected in Alaska by Paul Steinhacker, New York.
Ex private collection, Canada.

Sold
According to Fitzhugh et Kaplan (Inua: Spirit World of the Bering Sea Eskimo, 1982 : 156), these carved 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.

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