Betel Nut & Tobacco Containers

This style of container is called a Tiba and generally has the wider neck to house the Betel Nut, Siri stick or leaf and tobacco that accompanies the lime powder. Which when chewed together in correct proportions, creates the orange wad seen in the betel nut chewers ritual. Tiba rarely holds the lime powder.
Deliberately made with a different shape and usually with less or no intricate carving adorning it, the differing shape makes it easier to find in the dark of a hut or when fishing around inside the men’s aluk or betel nut bag.
Most traditional Timorese men create their own containers although some, as in any art, are better at it than others. There is local trading amongst the Timorese ensuring that the better craftsmen are kept busy. This also means that there is always a wonderful variety of containers available me when I arrive each year.
Copyright Julie Emery 22/02/2022©