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Uru-Model Vessel Beypore Calicut
: The uru or dhow was the traditional
Arabian trading vessel. Once the Arab traders discovered wealthy
Kerala, her solid timber, skilled craftsmen and her native technology
centuries ago, they shifted their dhow construction to Malabar (northern
Beypore in Kozhikode district, the most important
harbour in the region, thus became the centre for ship building.
The industry thrived here until recently when iron and steel took
over as the best material for construction.
Urus were gigantic vessels, created meticulously
by nailing together well planed planks of timber. It took a team
of fifty men at least four years to complete a vessel.
Today, not many vessels are launched from Beypore
and the artisans have taken to crafting little wooden models of
their gigantic masterpieces. These four inch to eight foot 'Model
Vessels' crafted out of teak wood would cost you anything from Rs.180/-
to Rs. 25,000/-.
Fancy artefacts like the models enclosed in bottles
are more popular and priced between Rs. 125/- and Rs. 500/-.
You can even get them made-to-order at Kairali,
Alakapuri Buildings, Jail Road, Kozhikode Tel:91-495-723723 and
at Surabhi, Aradhana Tourist Home Buildings, Kallai Road, Kozhikode
Tel: 91-495-301284 or pick one up at a bargain from the local outlets