This style of pipe is known as bamatuka or lunginy in eastern Arnhem Land and is commonly referred to as a Macassan pipe. These pipes were only used by senior men and decorated with sacred clan designs or madayin minytji. The pipe was introduced by Makassans from southern Sulawesi in Indonesia who sailed annually to harvest the sea cucumber called trepang in Australia's northern waters. Makassans came from at least the seventeenth century until the early 1900s and it is generally accepted that they introduced tobacco into Australia. The form is also said to closely resemble opium smoking pipes from South Asia, and in Makassar the plant was sometimes mixed with opium to provide the flavor that the opium-smoking experience lacked.

Physical Description

A long cylindrical pipe with incisied designs and painted with natural pigments. The proximal end is open and the other closed. It has a small hole at the distal end.

Local Name


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