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Gallery Ezakwantu

African Art  - Art Africain - Tribal Art -  菲洲艺术 - Afrikanische Kunst

 

Central and Southern African Tribal Art

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 South African Tribal Weapons

Armes de Combat de l’Afrique du Sud

Südafrikanische Waffen

 

 

 

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Shona and related Knives - Swords

 

Knife and Scabbard - Bakatwa

 

 

 

Shona Sword Example 'A'  + - 52 cms.

 

Portuguese recorded the personal knives and swords of the South East African people from the 15th century. The circa 1900 example above is over half a meter in length. Click here to view an image appearing in our Summer 2014 Newsletter to get the perspective.  The wirework is in very fine - above average condition.

 

 

Bakatwa Dagger

 

 

Bakatwa Dagger - Example 'B'  + - 24.5 cms.

 

Related knives and daggers were collected in Zimbabwe and Mozambique during the 19th century from the Karanga, a large language group of many Nations, most of which are incorrectly referred to as Shona. Like looking variants are found from South Africa, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Malawi, Tanzania and west to include the Great Lake Region. The daggers are called bakatwa by collectors and some tribesmen. This example is likely the oldest on offer as it is bound with course hardened animal hair. The use of hair predates that of wire, as does the woven or braded technique.

 

 

Brass Bakatwa Knife

 

 

Shona Knife - Example 'C'  + - 18.5 cms.

 

The Portuguese recorded that small examples (B & C) were worn on the upper arm. An attachment hole was carved to the decorated forward side of the scabbard. Scabbards were carved in two sections. A flared foot ensured the lower binding did not slip off. The example above is tiny and nearly completely covered with brass wire.

 

 

Karanga Sword

 

 

Bakatwa Sword and Scabbard - Example 'D' + -  45.5 cms

 

This short sword was re-discovered in a South African in a colonial context and likely dates to the 1920's. Blades were predominately “ogee in section” or “blood grooved”.

 

Ogee: (plural ogees) noun - S-shaped curve: a decorative double curve like an elongated and flattened S (Late 17th century. Alteration of ogive)

Blood Grooved: (easy in - easy out) A remarkable stabbing invention!

 

 

 

 

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Tsonga Knobkerrie - Circa 1900

 

Tsonga - Zulu Prestige Staff  - 19th Century

 

 

Tsonga Zulu Knobkerrie + -  73 cms.

 

This old multiple disk prestige knob was discovered in Germany. Indigenous repairs have been made with brass or copper wire. It has a crack and insect holes that were long ago abandoned. 

 

 

 

 

The Berlin Mission Society established a presence in Tsonga - Shangaan and Venda regions circa 1850. This is an exceptional - early example and likely from that period.

 

 

 

Fully beaded Knobkerrie

Shangaan - Tsonga - Mozambique

 

 

Beaded Knobkerrie

 

This fully beaded knobkerrie of South East African origin is threaded on sinew, a talent localized to Southern Africa. It was likely used as a sign of stature by a traditional healer.

 

 

 

 

Note the occasional blue striped beads on white (above left). The bead type was traditionally used by Nguni sangoma or Basotho ngaka healers. The item came to us with an amount of beaded gourds that appear to be of circa 1940 Tsonga Shangaan origin. Related gourds were used by South East African traditional doctors as medicinal charms. 

 

 

 

 

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Kuvale Himba Spear

 

Southern Angola - Namibia
 

 

Peter August Möller - 1885


Swedish Captain Peter August Moller hunted in Southern Angola and present day Namibia between 1895-1896. He photographed this group of Kuvale men in 1885, each armed with a spear similar to the one on offer, which are today used to slaughter cattle.

 

 

 

 

This Himba spear was collected in Southern Angola. Visually related spears were used throughout the region by the Kuvale, Kwanyama, Ondonga, Ovambo and Zemba / Mundimba people. Spears were made from a solid piece of forged iron. The rod was covered / inserted midway with a cow's tail.
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Galerie Ezakwantu

Southern African Tribal Art - African Art 

 

Central and Southern African Tribal Art

 

Art Africain      頂级菲洲艺术品中心     Afrikanische Kunst     Außereuropäische Kunst

 

 

 

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