Superb "Pineapple"/"Beaked Battlehammer" Club, Fiji Islands
length 34in (86 1/2cm)
totokia, of characteristic shape with fine decorative incising on the handle; exceptionally fine, rich reddish-brown patina with encrustations.
Phillip Han Tapsell, a trader and ship's captain in the first-half of the 19th century who operated out of New Zealand's "Bay of Islands"
Private Collection, New Zealand
According to Cluny (1986: p. 185), "With its heavy, swollen head, and the concentration of its impact on the point of its beak, the totokia was intended to 'peck' holes in the skull. Shortest and most specialised of clubs, it delivered a deadly blow in an abrupt but vicious stab, not requiring the wide swinging arc demanded by others."