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Can you work out what this is for?

 
Mother Tree
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I found this in the charity shop and couldn't resist.

I've wanted one for ages, but how many of you can guess what it's for? (shhh - anyone who recognises it, don't tell 'em!)

 
pollinator
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You're darn right I have a guess. But I'll just keep my mouth shut
 
steward
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One spout for filling , one for pouring . Unglazed terra cotta which when wet will cool contents . I say water cooler of old. My final answer.
 
Burra Maluca
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wayne stephen wrote:One spout for filling , one for pouring . Unglazed terra cotta which when wet will cool contents . I say water cooler of old. My final answer.



Right first time!

The pouring spout is for drinking - lift the whole thing high into the air and pour into your mouth from as far away as you can - no touching, this thing is meant for sharing. This shape is for filling and taking to the fields - it's quite rounded and flat bottomed so it will balance easily and stand up. The indoor ones are mostly pointed bottoms and are stored in mental loops to increase cooling). The correct name seems to be 'moringue' but the locals just call it a 'bliha'. Initial experiments comparing the temperature of water inside compared with water stored in plastic suggests that it cools the water by several degrees. Not a huge amount, but during hot weather it's more than welcome!
 
wayne stephen
steward
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I think this would make a good ongoing thread. Anyone else with a good puzzler ? Thanks Burra !
 
steward
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There was a TV game show back in the 70s that gave celebrities some odd looking artifact. They had to explain what it was. The contestant had to choose who was telling the truth in order to win a prize. or something like that.
 
Burra Maluca
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Here's a couple more photos I took while 'testing' to see how significant the cooling effect was.

Here we have one empty terracotta pot, one full terracotta pot (it's darker as the water has seeped through the walls) and one plastic water bottle. I'd filled them with water two days previously to give the temperatures time to settle down. The water in the plastic bottle is 23.2 C and in the terracotta it is 20.4 C. Not a huge difference, but every little helps!



A couple of days later I thought I should measure the temperature of the surface of the pots. It was a hotter day, so the temperatures don't really relate to the ones in the previous photo. I stuck one probe on the surface of the empty pot - 27.5 C, and the full pot (jammed in the crook of the handle as it kept falling off because of the wet surface) measured 22.7 C. I'm pretty sure that it was acting to cool the room as much as the water.

 
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