Poporo is a device used by indigenous cultures in present and pre-Columbian South America for storage of small amounts of lime (mineral). It is constituted by two pieces: the recipient and the lid that includes a pin that is used to carry the lime to the mouth while chewing coca leaves. Since the chewing of coca is sacred for the indigenous people, the poporos are also attributed with mystical powers and social status.
In Colombia, the poporos are found in archeological findings of Chibcha, Muisca, and Quimbaya cultures among others. The materials used are in the early periods, mainly pottery and carved stone. In classic periods gold and tumbaga are the most frequent. An example of this is the Poporo Quimbaya exhibited in the Gold Museum which is a national symbol. At the present time, the indigenous people of Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta still uses poporos made with the dry fruits of a plant of genus cucurbita (totumo), in the traditional way.
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article Poporo