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Samoan Material Culture

Rootstock Clubs

Rootstock Clubs

The rootstock club, so named by Churchill (5, p. 25), is a straight billet club but with the root of the sapling retained to form the head. The roots are cut off leaving short ends sticking out to form spikes. The type was restricted by Churchill to Tonga and Fiji where it is common. Edge-Partington (10, vol. 2, p. 41) figures an example in the Pitt Rivers Museum which is attributed to Samoa. It has the typical triangular lug at the end of a flared handle. The spikes, however, look as if cut out of the solid and the club may be intermediate between the rootstock and the usual type of mace. Kramer (18, vol. 2, p. 214) figures a similar club in Stuttgart which is labelled "Samoa," but which he looks upon as Fijian. If the rootstock type was known in Samoa, it was evidently rarely used.