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TRADITIONS & UTENSILS

 

 

 

  punka (ceiling fan)

 

Myanmar

Punka is the Burmese term used for a fan, which in its traditional form consists of a framed rectangular piece of textile or a rug, that is attached to the ceiling.

 

It is operated with a rope, making it the fan swing back and forth by pulling the rope, somewhat like a church bell, though the one in this photo additionally has a handle.

 

  punka (ceiling fan)

 

 

This archaic fan, in the past usually reserved for the rich and royalty, was typically operated by a servant.

 

Today, it can still be found over a large Buddha image at the Shwedagon Pagoda in Yangon (fig.), where visitors can gain merit by fanning the image.

 

  punka (ceiling fan)