In another section there are some tapered-distaffs, little utensils for the workmanship of the wool consituted by a woody axle which, in the upper part, widen in hemispheric
form. The apex is almost always decorated with a female figure whose stylistic features follow the most remote phases of the mediterranean art. Often the bulgy part contained a pebble which provoked a sound marked during the
The decorated bra sticks are another example of the shepherds' art; together with the distaff, the bra sticks were a gift as love token from the shepherd to the own woman.
Of a different origin, devotional, are the
varette and domestic altars realized by the shepherds in imitation of the simulacrum of the own Patron Saint, carried in procession for the feast in their native
This articulated production, limited to the north-eastern Sicily, represents a particularly original portion of our traditions. A culture which since the neolithic age up to the 60's has been handed down.
The mountainous nature of the sicilian north-eastern peak, consituted by the brief Peloritani's chain, favoured the sheep-rearing activity since the remote age, while the bent on the Strait harbor favoured the development of an emporium-city, Messina, where the production of the pastoral economy (meats, hides, cheeses, milk, wool) found new
markets. There are many hilly installations in this area, almost always of prehistoric origin, where the presence of shepherds was well rooted and the production of the relative artistic manufactured articles was rich. Up to the last postwar period the peloritan shepherds used clothes and shoes made with goat hide, as Humerus taled, and they lived in shelters built with the same technique of the prehistoric huts.