Warrior with Beads
The only known tribes to have shrunken heads are the Jivaroan of Ecuador and Peru.
A shrunken head or "tsantsa" was a severed human head used for trophy, ritual or trade purposes.
The term "headhunters" was in reference to the upsurge of killings due to the demand of shrunken heads from Westerners.
Guns and gold were payment to the tribesmen for these souvenirs.
The shrinking of the head of an enemy was believed to entrap the spirit and prevent the soul from avenging his death. The skull was discarded in the river as an offering to pani/anaconda.
The eyes and mouth were sewn shut. The head was formed around a wooden ball to keep it's shape and boiled for a few hours until it was 1/3 it's original size. The final shrinking involved hot rocks and sand. This entire process would take a week. The head was then worn as a trophy by the warrior.
Crafted by indigenous Ecuadorian artisans in the Jivaro tradition.
Notice the attention to details-
Eyebrows and eyelashes
Thick wooly hair
Beads and Feathers
Head and hair are alpaca
Approximately 5" in diameter
There is a jute cord loop for hanging
You will receive the item in the photograph
Handcrafted in Ecuador
top of page
bottom of page