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Horn player Benin (N° 14388)

In benign iconography, several types of horn players are denoted. It has a headdress, an oliphant and an embroidered tunic, many colirs. It is shown standing on a circular base with open outlines. Dark brown patina, grey-green inlays.

Many people thought they recognized in these figurines the ancestor of the dignitary of the court of Benin who, during royal processions, announced the arrival of the Oba and his entourage with the help of akohen or horn with side mouth, ivory cleverly carved.
This thesis is contradicted, however, by the leopard mask that these figurines sometimes wore on the left hip causing the tunic to be removed upwards, an attribute associated with military function.
In fact, between the end of the 15th and the beginning of the 17th century, Benin's warlords undertook numerous campaigns aimed at ensuring Benin's hegemony over much of southwestern Nigeria. For these campaigns, hundreds of heavily armed warriors were mobilized. As they advanced into enemy territory, these troops were preceded by a leading group that made as much noise as possible. It is true that the menacing bearings of the war drums mixed with the rattling of swords and spears, the ringing of bronze bells, the high-pitched sounds of flutes and pipes, and the rausptive sounds of the bronze horns formed a sound wall that reinforced psychologically the ranks of the invaders.  

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This item is sold with its certificate of authenticity

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Originex-collection allemande
Material(s)alliage de bronze
Weight5.93 Kg
Estimated datingn/a

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