Makila Zapirain - The Makila

The Makila

Belle Epoque woman wears a makila, accompanied by her daughter in the aristocratic Biarritz.

The makila is a traditional stick made of medlar wood. Inseparable companion of the Basque people, it is not only a symbol of their independence and personal freedom, but also a tool for support and self-defence. Nowadays an object of distinction and authority, it is claimed that it has its origin in the sticks used by the Basque shepherds from the Pyrenees to look after the cattle. It is a sign of respect and honour to the recipients, reflecting the authority of dignitaries such as mayors and presidents when taking their posts.
There is another theory that also supports a possible connection with the invention of the well-known bayonet.