(Fine Interiors - Two Day Sale - Live Online, 31st March 2021)
A Maori mere pounamu hand club,
probably 18th/19th century, New Zealand, made from kawakawa pounamu, of typical spatulate form, the grooved butt with a single eyelet,
11.3cm at widest
A similar example, named 'Amokura', can be found in the Museum of New Zealand collection, registration number ME011850.
Mere are a specific type of hand-to-hand weapon of the New Zealand Maori, typically made from a variety of nephrite jade called pounamu, or 'greenstone', found on the South Island, and particularly significant within Maori culture. They are symbolic of chieftainship and are said to possess special spiritual qualities. Their significance was such that each specific club had to be hewn from a flawless specimen of pounamu, and was rigorously carved and subsequently polished using combinations of stone, sand and water. Once completed, which, because of its toughness as well as the meticulous and arduous method of manufacture, sometimes took more than one generation, each piece was given a name and passed down through families as treasured heirlooms. As well as having immense familial significance, in a functional capacity, they were incredibly efficient and deadly in combat; it is claimed that, when used by a skilled warrior, a quick flick of the wrist could decapitate a man. It was a great honour to be killed by particularly significant mere pounamu, and some accounts mention captured warriors relinquishing their own mere to their captors so that they would not be executed with any ordinary weapon. The present example is made from kawaka pounamu, which is the most common variety of pounamu, identifiable by the numerous black flecks that run through the stone.
Take advantage of our new Sworders Delivery Service. Please see details below.
Broken and repaired in several places to the tip, with one approximately 1.5 x 1.5cm piece appearing to be associated. A sizeable loss to the butt, which is a well worn break. Some tiny chips to edges. Surface wear and scratches. General wear throughout.
If you require specific information, please provide as much detail as possible below.
As you cannot attend the auction in person we can bid on your behalf. You can leave an absentee bid on our website.
The amount you bid should be your maximum bid. We will bid up to that limit for you, and remember you may end up paying less than your limit, depending on other bidding on the day.
You can leave an absentee bid up to half an hour before the start of any sale. Please note when we receive two or more absentee bids for the same amount, the first bid received will be the one taken.
Leave commission bids online on sworder.co.uk
If you would like to leave a commission bid on our website you can do so up until 30 minutes before the sale starts. Leaving a commission bid through sworder.co.uk is free for all registered clients. Thereafter you may register bank card details under your account in order to bid live. Click here to register an account.
Bid live on sworder.co.uk
You can bid live at our auctions from the comfort of your home or office using bidding platform Sworders Live. It is easy to register and you can watch the auction live as it happens. A 'Bid Live' button will appear on the auction on our website homepage when a sale is live; simply click the button to sign in or register with your card details. There is no additional charge for this service.
For further instructions on registering to bid live, please click here.
If you would like to bid by telephone please contact our team prior to the auction with your details of the lots you are interested in and your full name, address, telephone number(s) and email address. Once our team have entered your bid request you will receive an email confirmation. We will contact you during the sale and one of our team will bid live with you over the phone.
Please note that we normally offer this service for lots with an estimate of £500 or higher and all telephone bid requests must be received by close of business the day before the auction.
The auction details are as follows:
Auction: Fine Interiors - Two Day Sale - Live Online, 31st March 2021
Please select the shipping destination;
Here at Sworders we are happy to offer a free online valuation service. Please fill out the form and press the 'Submit' button below.
To help us with your valuation please attach clear photographs of the item where possible. You can submit up to 5.
Approximate dimensions are also useful. Expect to hear from the appropriate valuer as soon as possible.