Garuda-Shaped Indonesian Betel Nutcracker

Regular price $45.00

This Garuda-shaped Indonesian nutcracker, presumed early 20th century, would originally have used to cut pieces of Areca nut--commonly referred to as betel nut, and actually a fruit--in order to make chewing betel. A cultural tradition in Southest Asia practiced for thousands of years, a few slices of "betal nut" are wrapped in betel leaf, sometimes spiced, and chewed for their effects as a mild stimulant.  At present, I think it certainly could still be employed as a nutcracker, though I might balance it on a nail to display it on the wall in order to enjoy it everyday or arrange it on a tray on the coffee table, perhaps alongside a pretty bowl filled with walnuts.

The national emblem of Indonesia, Garuda is a legendary bird or bird-like creature in Hindu, Buddhist and Jain mythology, described as the king of birds and a kite-like figure.  

The nutcracker is in good overall condition, opening and closing easily. There is some surface rusting consistent with age and use. It was purchased from an estate in Boston, which included a collection of several other Indonesian nutcrackers.

8.5" tall x 3.5" wide x .25" deep.