Heavy harpoon for hunting whales. Kodiak Eskimos. USA , Alaska state, Kodiak. North America, The North-West of the continent, Alaska, Kodiak Island.

Heavy harpoon for hunting whales
Collection MAE RAS: № 2868-193
Image ID: 4070616
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Museum inventory number:
№ 2868-193
Title:
Heavy harpoon for hunting whales
Ethnicity:
Kodiak Eskimos
Place:
USA , Alaska state, Kodiak
Geography:
North America, The North-West of the continent, Alaska, Kodiak Island
Collector:
Voznesenskii Ilya Gavrilovich, zoologist, entomologist, traveller
Materials:
wood, bone, urinary bladder
Dimensions:
length 196.5 cm, diameter of the shaft 3.5 cm, length of the bladder 42 cm, width of the bladder 9.6 cm
Commentation:
“The hunting of whales was confined to certain families and the right to do so was passed from a father to the son who had demonstrated the greatest hunting skill and intelligence. But whale hunting among the inhabitants of Kodiak was never perfected to the degree that it was among the Greenlanders and other peoples. The Kodiak hunter only goes after the smaller whales, and sitting in his single-hatched kayak, throws his harpoon whose shaft separates from the slate point at the time of impact and falls off into the water. Thus the whale, having been wounded and carrying a slate point or spear in its body, goes out to sea with it and later ends up on the shore but sometimes completely disappears. When this happens one can conclude that none of the whale hunters made a direct hit.” (Lisianskii 1947: 183).
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