346. A Monoxylic Drinking Cup from the Yaka People

South-central Congo, along the Wamba River, circa 1930
Size: 11.5 cm high, 14.5 cm wide

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This cup had a ceremonial purpose, to seal a deal between two chieftains who each drank out of one of the spouts. I’m not sure what they drank, but undoubtedly something potent. Other examples are known, of course, but the addition of a limp phallus is unusual. At first sight it seems marvellously comical, a piece of wood that, with its feet and phallus, aspires to the human condition. R. Crumb could have paired it up with Honeybunch Kominsky, trucking on down Madison Avenue.