Moru Misa basket

Moru Misa basket
Other views of this artifact:

Accession Number:
[Southern Sudan] Western Equatoria ?Lui ?Lanyi
Cultural Group:
Moru Misa
Date Made:
By 1979
Palm Fibre Plant
Basketry , Chequer Woven , Twisted , Tied
Ht = 215, rim diam = 335 x 322, rim w = 8, base L = 165, W = 153; strip W = 9, loop L = 60 mm [RTS 20/9/2005].
218.3 g
Local Name:
kobiga korega
Other Owners:
Purchased by Patti Langton on 27st January 1979 fpr 30 piastres, as part of the British Institute in Eastern Africa's Expedition to the Southern Sudan [RTS 14/5/2004].
Field Collector:
Patti Langton
PRM Source:
Patti Langton
Purchased 1979
Collected Date:
27 January 1979
Basket consisting of a circular, everted mouth on a deep body with straight to slightly convex sides flaring down to a square base with slight feet at the corners. The rim has been made from a group of narrow fibre strips, bent into a loop, and over bound by the vertical warp of the basketry body. The body consists of broad strips of an orangey brown palm fibre (Pantone 730C), woven into a simple checkweave of over-1, under-1 design, with the strips being worked from the rim downwards, with several end pieces visible in the weave on the base underside. A small suspension loop has been added on one side, halfway down the body, made from a length of twisted fibre cord with the ends knotted together. The basket is complete, but shows some wear, particularly on the feet. It has a weight of 218.3 grams, and is 215 mm high, with a rim diameter of 335 by 322 mm, a rim thickness of 8 mm, and a base that is 165 mm long and 153 mm wide. The palm strips have an average width of 9 mm, and the suspension loop is 60 mm long.

Purchased by Patti Langton on 27st January 1979 for 30 piastres, as part of the British Institute in Eastern Africa's Expedition to the Southern Sudan. The exact place it was obtained was not recorded, but was probably either Lui or Lanyi in Western Equatoria.

This type of basket is called
kobiga , or by the generic term korega, and is used for carrying sorghum. It is made of palm fibre, or etu.

For other Moru Misa baskets used to carry sorghum, but made from the stem of the sorghum plant, see 1979.20.5-6. This has a similar body form, but has been made using a different basketry technique, most notably in the treatment of the rim.

Primary Documentation:
Accession Book Entry [p. 185] - 1979.20 (.1 - 206) P[urchase] MISS PATTI LANGTON, DEPT. of ETHNOLOGY & PREHISTORY, OXFORD. Collection made by Patti Langton during the British Institute in East Africa's expedition to the Southern Sudan; Jan. - April 1979. The collection was made in three culture areas during the dry season. The amount paid for each object is listed if the information is known. In Jan. 1979 £1 is equivalent to 95 piastres (pt.) Sudanese. This documentation is based largely upon Patti's own list of objects and her notes on these. Sometimes objects included in the Pitt Rivers alottment of the collection do not appear on her list and have been added here. See Related Documents file as well. [pp 185 - 186] 1979.20.1 - 42 SOUTHERN SUDAN the MORU MISA The Moru Misa live about 100 miles west of Juba, the capital of the Southern Sudan. Part of the collection was made in Lui, a small town which has had extensive church and missionary activity over the past 50 years (excluding the period of civil war) and which now boasts a church, a hospital and a number of schools. The rest of the Moru Misa collection was made at Lanyi, 15 miles away, where the paramount chief of the area, Chief Elinama, arranged for people to bring artifacts for us to buy. Although money is known to the Moru, its use is limited and the concept of selling belongings is foreign to them. Hence the low prices and the relatively small number of artefacts. The Moru Misa are a geographical section of the Moru people. The Moru practice agriculture for subsistence; they do not keep cattle any longer. [p. 187] 1979.20.4 - Basket, kobiga (generic word korega ). Used for carrying sorghum. Made from palm, etu . Rim Diam. = ca. 32 cm; H = ca. 21.5 cm. Coll. 27.1.79; 30 pt.; Langton Coll. no. 8.
Additional Accession Book Entry [in red biro under accession number] - A5-F32-26.

Card Catalogue Entry - There is no further information on the tribes catalogue card [RTS 2/6/2004].

Pitt Rivers Museum label - SOUTHERN SUDAN, Moru Misa tribal area. Basket. Pat Langton coll., no. 8. 1979.20.4 [plastic coated label, tied to object; RTS 20/9/2005].

Related Documents File - 1979.20 contains a typed packing list, which has been annotated; a typed list of objects arranged by Langton collection numbers and with pencil and biro annotations (this appears as 'basket ( KOREGA = generic word) KOBIGA for carrying sorghum. Made from palm. ETU . 30 pt'), and a handwritten list of objects by museum number, essentially repeating this information and annotated with PRM photo numbers in red. This handwritten list seems to be the direct source for the accession book entry [RTS 12/1/2004].

Funded by Arts and Humanities Research Council
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