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African Zulu Clay Beer Pot Vintage 1940s

Zulu Tribal Clay Beer Pot, Ukhamba. This spherical form vintage Beer Pot is decorated with compressed chevron bands throughout the center.  It was made for storing and pouring the traditional sorghum beer popular in Zulu culture in South Africa.

The making and use of pottery by the Zulu people reached a higher level due to the feeding of large groups of people and having to respect (hlonipha) the ancestors by using traditional utensils made of familiar materials. Although it was more traditional to use baskets as they were easier to store and during travel on military campaigns, there was no concern about the basket breaking. 

Once the Zulu nation became concentrated into large regimental kraals under Shaka Zulu, there was the need to feed more people, have larger pots and to make them heavy enough that enemies could not walk off with their supplies.

This pot was passed down from one clan and can be traced to the 1940's, although I'm told it is somewhat older. 

This pot is covered with a grass imbengi (cover) that is used to keep bugs and dirt out of the beer.

Imbengi is available but not included in this listing.

Approximate Dimensions:  12" H X 42 C X 5.75 D at opening

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