Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 40.djvu/59

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49
DRESS AND ADORNMENT.

laying, from New Guinea. King Munza's sister begged lead bullets from Schweinfurth and hammered from them bright ear-rings. From New Zealand come very pretty ear-rings of green jade in the shape of sharks' teeth. Is it not certain that we here have another example of the law of copying an old form in a new material?

PSM V40 D059 African arm ornament.jpg
Fig. 6. — African Arm Ornament. The Dagobar.

Did the New Zealanders not wear real sharks' teeth, as some Alaskan and British Columbian tribes do now, before they made these more beautiful ones? Waist-girdles are interesting, not only in themselves, but also because of their influence upon dress development, already traced. In Australia they are often made of finely twisted human hair. Unique in material and really attractive in appearance are the Hottentot girdles made by stringing concave-convex disks of ostrich-egg shell. Such cords looked like a rope of ivory, and sometimes passed quite around the body. Nose ornaments and labrets were spoken of in the lecture on Deformations, and we care little to add to what is there said. Mr. Kunz recently showed us some interesting labrets made by the old Mexicans from jade and amethyst that show skillful work. These are all of the hat-shaped pattern, and the one of jade is very large. Were not some of the oldest ornaments known supposed to be hair-pins, we should hardly refer to these. From the lake dwellings of Switzerland we have a large number of these objects very neatly made, in a variety of large and ornamental patterns, from bronze. Vast quantities of bronze ornaments of all kinds — rings, arm-bands, wristlets, hair-pins, pendants, etc., have been found on these sites. Feathers are often worked up into wonderfully beautiful decorations. Some Upper Nile peoples use the "supple breast-feathers of the gray pelican, making them up into close perukes, which form excellent imitations of a luxuriant crop of gray hair." The head-dresses of bird-of-paradise feathers from the South Seas are beautiful in colors and graceful in form. The New Zealander made an elegant head-dress of pelican feathers, arranged in white bunches as wings on each side of the head, meeting above. The "war-bonnets" of eagle feathers, and the single, neatly wrapped and decorated feathers worn by American tribes, are well known. In this connection we may see how ornaments may indirectly en-