Didinga lip plug

Didinga lip plug
Other views of this artifact:

Accession Number:
[Southern Sudan] Eastern Equatoria Didinga Hills Chukudum
Cultural Group:
Date Made:
By 1940
Glass , Animal Hide Skin?
Recycled , Ground
L = 72, W = 9, th = 4, ring L = 9.5, W = 8.7, th = 3 mm [RTS 1/3/2005].
6.7 g
Other Owners:
Samuel P. Powell
Field Collector:
Samuel P. Powell
PRM Source:
Samuel P. Powell
Loaned July 1940
Collected Date:
By 1940
Lip plug made from a piece of transparent pale green recycled glass (Pantone 7485C), consisting of a narrow body with rectangular section. This is strongly curved and appears to have been made from a piece cut out of the circumference of a circular object such as a bottle, with an original diameter of around 75 mm. The upper end has been ground smooth, and has a narrow strip of what may be animal hide fitted just below the top. There is no seam, and it is probably cut from a sheath-like section of an animal's tail. This is a pale yellowish cream colour (Pantone 7506C), with some pink staining on top (Pantone 198C), and would rest inside the mouth, keeping the plug in place. Below this, the long sides of the glass fragment have been ground down, to create a narrow body of slightly irregular width that seems to taper to its lower end; this has a fresh break across it and may not be the original base of the object. The lip ornament is otherwise complete, although the hide ring may have deteriorated; it has a weight of 6.7 grams and is 72 mm long, 9 mm wide and 4 mm thick; the hide ring is 9.5 mm long, 8.7 mm wide and 3 mm thick.

Collected by Samuel P. Powell at Chukudum in the Didinga Hills, and given to the museum on loan in 1940. This lip ornament was worn by a man.

The Didinga are are found mainly in southern Sudan (Didinga hill area and north of Nagishot) and in North Eastern Uganda; their language has similarities to the Longarim and Murle (http://www.ethnologue.com/show_language.asp?code=DID).

The material used to make the 'ring' near the top of the plug is similar in appearance to that making up the amuletic pendant on 1940.7.056.

Rachael Sparks 30/9/2005.

Primary Documentation:
Accession Book Entry [Loans II, p. 308] - ESTATE OF S.P. POWELL, C/O N.H. HASLAM, Esq. Manager, Westminster Bank, Stony Stratford, Bucks. Collected by himself. Data from his labels and notes. [p. 312] From the DIDIGNA (DODINGA) tribe, ANGLO-EGYPTIAN SUDAN (southern border). 1940.7.074 - Man's lip ornament, made from glass bottle. CHUBUDUM. DIDINGA MOUNTAINS [there is an 'h' inserted above the 'b' of 'Chubudum'].

Card Catalogue Entry - A.E. SUDAN, DIDINGA MOUNTAINS, CHUHUDUM, DIDINGA (DODINGA) TRIBE. 1940.7.074. Man's lip ornament made from portion of glass bottle. S.P. Powell coll. Lent by his executors.

Related Documents File - Appears on undated typed list: "Didinga glass lip ornament". List is annotated by hand on back: "List of Curios" and "Far from complete" [RTS 16/12/2003].

Pitt Rivers Museum label - Lip ornament made from glass bottle. Worn by men. DIDINGA. Chuhudum (?) Didinga Mtns. S.P. Powell [brown luggage tag, tied to object].

Funded by Arts and Humanities Research Council
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