King Billy Hook

Item DP03   

This Item was Sold on 24 April 2009 for $75

Similar artifacts for sale are often found on the Aboriginal Boomerangs web page. 

Historical Pricing information for this item and similar artifacts can be found at: Historical Artifact Prices.

Australian Aborigines are well known for making boomerangs. The majority of Aborigines had the technology to make throwsticks, or non-returning boomerangs. Only a small percentage of the tribal groups knew how to make true returners and most of these came from the eastern coastal regions of Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria. During the past century, the majority of the Aborigines came out of the bush and they were absorbed into the society of the European Australians. Many Aborigines began making returning style boomerangs to sell to tourists. The earliest ones were well made out of natural timber and with the grain following the curvature of the boomerang. Today, most hardwood boomerang are cut out of a large board and the grain is usually straight and running parallel to a line spanning the tips of the blades. Boomerangs that are made with the grain following the contour of the blades are much stronger and more valuable. In addition, some boomerangs have good airfoiling. The majority do not. Most "tourist boomerangs" have painted upper surfaces that display Australian animals and decorative lines and/or geometric patterns. Most pre-contact returners have no artwork or the artwork is simple and scratched into the surface. It is easy to tell the tourist boomerang from the valuable ethnographic artifact. However, tourist boomerangs that are made properly with the grain running along the contour and with good airfoiling and artwork do have good collectable value, especially if they are made by famous Aboriginal artists like Bill Onus, Lin Onus or Joe Timbery.

This boomerang is a natural elbow in a large hook shape that is similar to one o the most famous boomerangs ever made, the King Billy Hook. Made out of Mulga wood with the grain running along the curve of the boomerang and smoothly finished. There is an attractive ripple or curly grain pattern at the elbow. Nicely made and without damage. This boomerang has return boomerang airfoiling, but it is very heavy. As a lefty, I was unable to put enough power into achieving a full return on a test throw, but it does make a turn, so a strong right handed thrower should be able to make it work just fine. Span = 39 cm ; Weight = 148 gm

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