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Nachiarkoil Kuthuvilakku/ Nachiarkoil Lamp of Tamil Nadu

Metal

Nachiarkoil Kuthuvilakku/ Nachiarkoil Lamp of Tamil Nadu

Kuthuvilakkus (lamps) usually consist of four parts:base (“keezh-bagam”), stem (“kandam”), oil container (“thanguli”) and the apex (“prabai”). The “thaguli” or oil container consists of V-shaped spouts to hold the wicks. These four parts are joined together with the help of screw threads. Lamps are also made in the shape of a branching tree, each branch ends with a small tray or bowl for the oil and wick. Kuthuvilakkus are manufactured in various sizes and also in the form of a standing woman holding in her hands a shallow bowl to contain the oil and the wick. They are used on religious and ceremonial occasions and are fashioned out of brass. The manufacture of bell-metal wares has always been the traditional occupation of the Pather community. However, in recent years, raw materials are difficult to procure; tin, for example, has become costly and scarce. As a result, many of the members of the Pather community have abandoned their craft.

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