"Kinikini," priest's or chief's hardwood club, with a broad paddle-like blade covered with incising and carved designs in crescent and full moon motifs. The base of the blade widens to points with ribs going down and across the center. The thin edge of the blade was used as a weapon, for cutting and snapping through the bone. This club is very broad, and may have been used as a shield/club. Publication: for a similar club see Fergus Clunie, "Yalo I Viti," Fiji Museum, 1986, pp. 119 & 185, and Clunie, "Fijian Weapons and Warfare," 1977, p. 55-56. Exhibited Magnificent Voyagers, National Museum of Natural History, 1985-86.
From card: "Large, paddle-shaped, wide cross rib."
This object was collected in Fiji under the direction of Lt. Charles Wilkes, leader of the historic United States Exploring Expedition, the American scientific expedition to circumnavigate the globe. The objects collected from that expedition became some of the founding collections of the Smithsonian Institution.