The Siurell is, undoubtedly, one of the most characteristic elements of the largest of the Balearic Islands. During your stay in Mallorca, you will surely find these clay figures with an attached whistle as decoration in homes, restaurants, or any public or private establishment, as well as for sale in shops.
These modelled clay figures are hand-dipped in a bath of lime, except for the whistle. Once dry, they are decorated with stripes and dots of various colours (traditionally red and green, but sometimes blue and yellow as well). This very ancient artisanal process is still carried out today.
There is a wide variety of models: the traditional Mallorcan demon, and human or animal figures. They have evolved in size, the most common siurells are ten to twenty centimetres high, but some are made up to half a meter in size.
It was used as a tool by farmers and shepherds to control their herds and even compose songs for Mallorcan folk dances. These figurines are also made in other Mediterranean islands: Ibiza, Sardinia or Crete, as well as the Iberian Peninsula, for example the Andujar whistles.
You should not miss a visit to one of the studios that still manufacture them. You will find them in: Inca, Santa María del Camí, and especially in two town in the Marratxi municipality: Sa Cabaneta and Pòrtol.
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