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Pot

Kongo pots were made by women, using coiled clay. As liquid evaporated through the sides of the fired pot, the water inside stayed cool....

Knife

This stylised harvesting knife is associated with Mangbetu chiefship being present on formal occasions, and presented to favoured families. It was an item of great value. This knife would have...

Figure

Male figure with cloth round neck and waist. Medicines would have been in the box on the stomach. Probably empowered for use in protecting a household. Collected before...

Axe

The axe’s wooden handle is attached to a blade of decorated iron and a sheathing of patterned copper – both metals being rare and expensive. The axe symbolised the potency...

Pubic apron

The public apron (nzenze) is worn by young girls and unmarried women during competition dances between rival villages. The apron not only enhances the wearer’s appearance but it denotes a...

Drum

Donated to the Museum in 1866 by Dartmouth shipbuilder Richard Redway. Redway’s brother Thomas had a fleet of trading ships that sailed to Africa. Although it states on the drum...

Fork

In addition to the demand for Africa’s natural resources, Europeans were keen to acquire curios. To meet the demands of new markets, carvers turned their skills to making craft items,...