The bell is described as follows:Precious Antique VIETNAMESE TIGER BELL Vietnam
Type of Object: PELLET BELL
Ethnic Group: VIETNAMESE / CHINESE
Country of Origin: VIETNAM
Approximate Age: 100+ years
Dimensions: 1.5" x 1.75" x 1.25"
Weight: 2.5 ounces
Overall Condition: Used, EXCELLENT
These Tiger bells have had a history of a wide range of use and distribution. This globular shaped bell has a pellet inside and produces a sound when shaken. The bell has a stylized tigers head on the surface and on the top half there is usually one or two Chinese characters and some curved lines and floral motifs. Bells with this design are found throughout Asia from Indonesia and Pakistan to Siberia, where they are used as an amulets by Shamans. The function of these bells ranges from being worn as necklaces to being sewn onto dance costumes. I was lucky to find this one in an antique shop in Vietnam
In an advertisement on e-Bay two tiger bells type B are offered. They are described as follows:
Pair of bronze ("Tiger') bells, used by Hmong shamans
They were collected in Mai Chau, in Northern Vietnam, in the mid 20th century. The height is 6 cm., the weight 178 grams. No further details are given.
Reported by Harald Lux, in December 2011
In the Musée d'Avallonois, Avallon (France), an important collection of Yao textiles, tools and religious objects is exhibited. Among the objects are a belt with bells which is part of a horse harness, and a box with objects needed for the performance of certain rituals, among them a bronze bell.
Seven of the bells are tiger bells
Of the bells seen from the left to the right (counterclockwise) the first two bells are not clearly visible; the bells 3 and 4 are tiger bells; 5, 6 and 7 are of a different type; 8, 9, 10, 11 and 12 are tiger bells; the upper two on the right (13 and 14) are of a different type. All bells have a very dark patina and the light in the room was poor. Despite the use of a flash, it was necessary to lighten up the picture and heighten the contrast in order to make some details of the design visible.
A box with ritual objects
Among the objects is one tiger bell of the smaller type B. The size is appr. the same as the tiger bell from the Akha, Thailand. The fuunction of the bell is described as follows:
Clochette, bronze. Servant au prêtre à rythmer une cérémonie lors des danses ou certains passages de rituels.
Kim Meun (Quang Trang en Viet), Qua Pae Meun, 1950Musée d'Avallonois, Avalon, August 2012
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for information please contact F. de Jager