South American Llama Spoons

To the natives of Peru, Ecuador and Bolivia, the llama is the most important animal that ever existed. A member of the camel family, they use the males as pack animals and the females for breeding and fur production. The llama is ideally suited to the harsh climate and terrain and is sure-footed on the narrow mountain trails and requires very little water and little upkeep. In addition, the meat is tasty. Is there any wonder that it has become a ubiquitious symbol of their country?

                                      

Very detailed filligree finial with a llama on top and a large 1 sol coin bowl (the US quarter is to show relative size)

         

This was the very first "souvenir spoon" which I ever purchased, and it has remained one of my favorite pieces. I first acquired this  900 silver piece at a garage sale for the whopping sum of 50 cents, but this spoon did not start me on the spoon collecting trail.  It languished in a box for several years until I retrieved it and gave it a place of honor. I have since acquired many more pieces, but I will always remember this first purchase.

The llama is mounted over two clown type figures. The bowl is designed for tea. It is hinged and tea leaves are placed in it, then snapped shut and stirred in hot water.

       

1. Detailed llama on twisted stem with a 50 centavo Bolivian coin

2. Circled llama salt spoon with a wired stem and a 25 cinquento Ecuadorian coin

3. Triangulated llama on a heavy twisted stem with a 1 sol Peruvian coin bowl

The coins can be see in better detail on the Coin Spoon page.

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