Niho (tooth form) pendant
NZ greenstone, waxed cord
85 x 30 x 3mm
A niho is a tooth/tooth form or tusk. The niho or tooth form can represent a spiritual connection to water (oceans, lakes, rivers) and nature, as well as a being a symbol of prosperity, abundance and protection.
Traditionally, niho (the teeth) of highly regarded creatures were worn decoratively as well as ceremonially. They were connected to Maori mythology and Mana Moana – authority and connection to the ocean and inland waters – and could symbolise the ability to provide for the people as well as give protection while traveling.
When actual teeth were not available, the tooth form could be carved from pounamu/greenstone and other stone, as well as bone.