Spencer Museum of Art The University of Kansas

Welcome to the Spencer Collection

JôJô (tortoise shell bell)
  • Ayoreo peoples
  • JôJô (tortoise shell bell), late 1800s–1976
  • Where object was made: Paraguay
  • tortoise shell, wood, caraguata fiber
  • Object Length/Width/Depth: 55 x 11 x 7 cm
    Object Length/Width/Depth: 21 5/8 x 4 5/16 x 2 3/4 in
  • Gift of Robert J. Smith
  • Not on display
  • 2007.5405

The bell has a complete tortoise (Ayoreo: yoga) shell for a body and a wooden clapper. It has twisted plant fiber string through one end.

It was worn while traveling to notify others of their presence, so the wearer would not be mistaken as an enemy and killed. Men traveled more than women, so men would use them more often.