Sireh bag

This basket comprises a beaded covering on 'anyam gila' or mad weave basketware base and is adorned with six brass bells. It also has a fine sheet of gold between the beads and the basket base. This basket represents an example of the elaborately decorated boxes, bags and wraps that were created to carry, store and offer the nuts, sirih leaves and lime required for betel-chewing. Batak heritage is thought to be rooted in the ancient Austronesian culture that was subject to influence from Indian communities who settled in the Barus area as early as the 7th century and Hindu Buddhist traditions emanating from ritual centres such as Padang Lawas in north Sumatra.