Figure Pair

Figure Pair

1800s

Copper alloy and iron

Overall: 15 cm (5 7/8 in.)

Gift of Drs. James, Gladys, Jay, Jeffrey, and Jamie Strain 1996.402

Location

Description

Castings in brass or bronze depicting a female and male joined by a chain are one of the primary symbols of membership in the powerful Oshugbo/Ogboni society. This council of male and female elders selected rulers and decided all important judicial matters among the Yoruba. The paired figures symbolically refer to the society's membership and their communal decisions, as well as all women and men of the community, and the original founding couple.

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