Horns for drinking wine. Dagestan. Late 19th century.

Horns for drinking wine. Dagestan. Late 19th century.

Horns (khanrzi or djihvi) for wine usually made of mountain goats, bull or ram horn. Such a goblet is still in use on feasts. A tip was usually decorated with silver and remained a bird head.

The image of a bird could be found almost on every type of vessels. An image of a bird has profound symbolic meaning. According peoples' belief a bird is a God's messenger, bearer of good news and pacification. A goblet is a soul and in the ritual wine drinking it recognizes itself and gain flying skills of a bird rising to God's figures. 

a horn of wine it is an obligatory attribute of a feast honouring a guest and a traditional gist in such an occasion. Large examples could hold between five and seven liters. The honour of drinking from such enormous horn goblets fell only to the most respected and strong men. At the same time correct using of a wine horn was a specific exam on knowing local traditions.