The ancient appearance of the pestle and mortar countered by the ribbon of tin which is a recently modern repair around the mouth of the mortar. the base having a hollowed out cavity, this having the effect of a handle for transporting. These features denote the Berber or Tuareg mortars, easily tied up to a dromedary back pack and carried to the next encampment or oasis. together with a solid pestle.
African pestle and mortar. Iconic African implement the form recognised throughout the world, used for centuries on the vast continent. These fine examples of hard, soft and palm wood pestles and mortars have been used for milling corn and many other organic commodities in the production of daily food for family groups. In north Africa these artefacts are found with great age, some show signs of hundreds of years of daily ware and tear. the objects are a valuable commodity in a land predominantly of vast treeless savannah and deserts.
Each pestle and mortar has charm and character of its daily use, some are extremely old, having passed through generations, some travelling thousands of kilometres across desert regions from one encampment to the another. A domestic item so proven that it is still used throughout parts of Africa for pounding out the daily bread of life in villages and townships. The examples we offer here are traded through Berbers of north Africa, have been passed through families to our modern times, some extremely old and some decades old.