Cunningham Gallery

18th Century Pre-Contact Hawaiian Basalt Chisel / Adze Blade

$420.00 USD

North Pacific, Hawaiian Islands, Pre-Contact Period, ca. 18th century or earlier. A hand-carved basalt hand chisel or adze blade boasting dark gray to nearly black hues.  The Saturday tool features a trapezoidal blade head with a planar base as well as a handle that projects diagonally outwards from the back portion.  The underside of the sharpened blade head is smooth to the touch and is indicative of countless uses.  Adzes are called "ko'i" in Polynesian, and it seems they were traded widely; indeed, axes from Hawai'i have been found thousands of miles away in what is now French Polynesia, demonstrating the incredible skill of Polynesian navigators.

Size: 6.7" long x 1.6" wide

Provenance, private Newport Beach, CA collection

Certificate of authenticity from Artemis Gallery.

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