What were Gourds used for in Pre-Modern times?


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Are there any very old Art Gourds?

What were Gourds used for in Pre-Modern times?

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What were Gourds used for in Pre-Modern times, the answer was many. This was the first form of jugs and dishes used by man as far back as recorded history. There have been gourd seeds recovered at Egypt and Libya dating back to 3800 BC along from caves in Israel dating back to the Neolithic period before clay pottery was used.

The gourds and their seeds have played an important role in the development of many societies. There has been discovered in the Hawaiian Islands that the gourd seeds were one of the things the Polynesian people brought with them when they migrated there. In those days the gourd was used not only as a means of jugs and bowls but also medicine and food.

The gourds were also known to exist back in the prehistoric times where they were used as percussion instruments. The best known is the maracas. These are hollowed out gourds that have small beads or stones placed inside. They were used to accompany the drums which also date back to the same period in time.

The maracas have been widely found all over Africa along with the south pacific islands. The name maracas is said to come from the country of Chile. It was the name given to this type of musical instrument by the native Araucanian people there in the pre-Columbian times. Not only were these found in South America but also in North America most notably the Hopi People.

What was known by the ancient people of the world was that the thick skinned gourds could be dried and used for a variety of purposes. These would start out green with some white to them. After the drying process they would be tan and brown.

The thinner skinned gourds are the ones that have a multitude number of colors to them. The can be orange, green, yellow, white and even blue. It is also the thinner skinned gourds that have the bumps and so called warts on them.

What was most advantageous about the gourds and the many uses form them was their supply. With each new season, new replacements could be made from the harvest. While a properly dried gourd can last for years, there was no means to preserve the material back then so once they became old, they were just discarded.

After the advent of fire there was a need for utensil that could withstand being heated. There has been some evidence uncovered that the first pots used to cook food were made of gourds that had clay plastered on the outside of them.

The use of gourds by man has a long and colorful history that has been useful as musical instruments, useful tools and art along with being a food source. The new Gourd Carousel ™ made for the Christmas celebration is not something that is new. What is new is how long they will now last since the gourd material is now sealed with urethane. This allows this art form to last decades for all to enjoy.

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