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New Guinea Weapons

Art-Pacific (Carolyn Leigh - Ron Perry): Guide to Artifacts

New Guinea Weapons from Papua New Guinea and Papua (Irian Jaya), Indonesia

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[Marek wearing engraved bone knife made from his father's leg bone on over his shoulder: 34k]

Figure 1: Marek wearing the dagger made from his father's leg bone on his shoulder. Photograph by Donna Patania near Ambunti, East Sepik Province, Papua New Guinea, 1982.

Bows and arrows, spears and atlatls, bone daggers and stone axes are still produced and actively used in New Guinea for hunting, warfare and for ceremony. While steel has replaced bone and stone in many implements, some remote areas of Papua (Irian Jaya) still rely on stone axes. Guns are relatively rare and expensive, so hunters and warriors make bows, arrows, spears and spear throwers using the skills developed by their ancestors.

Link to the following articles in our series on New Guinea Weapons:

See also:

Photograph copyright Donna Patania, 1998, all rights reserved.

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Melanesian art TOC | Map of art areas of Melanesia
Papua New Guinea: Highlands: body art - Bundi tapa - jewelry/dancers | Karawari and Blackwater Rivers: masks - carvings - map | Massim: artifacts- Trobriand Kula - map | Kula canoe | New Britain: Baining - Sulka - Tolai dukduk | New Ireland: Malagan | Ramu River: masks - carvings - map | Sepik River: masks - carvings - villages - map | Papuan Gulf: masks - carvings - map - Gogodala - Kukukuku
other areas: Asmat | Solomon Islands: crafts - jewelry - map
art and craft:
barkcloth (tapa) | body art | cane and fiber figures | canoes and prows | jewelry/dancers | masks - Middle Sepik | phallocrypts | pottery - Chambri | shields | story boards | suspension hooks | weapons | yam masks - fiber | yam masks - wood

Indonesian art TOC | Dyak baby carriers and masks | furniture | Java folk art | Lombok baskets | Lombok lontar boxes | masks from Bali and Java | puppets

China: Bai textiles/art TOC | baby carriers | baby hats | woodblock prints

Collecting New Guinea art in the field since 1964.

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Artifacts on this site were collected in the field by my husband, Ron Perry. I take the photographs, do the html, text and maps. Background in Who We Are. Art-Pacific has been on the WWW since 1996. We hope you enjoy our New Guinea tribal art and Indonesian folk art as much as we do. by Carolyn Leigh is licensed under Creative Commons CC BY-ND 4.0