MSSU African Art Exibit : The MSSU African Art collection features a variety of authentic works of art from various tribes located throughout Central Africa. The objects in the collection range from mundane day to day grooming tools to ritualistic masks and statues.
Kuba Sword, Double Gourd—Shaped
Object Name:
Sword, Kuba
Other Name:
Sword / Knife, Kuba
Place of Origin:
Kuba, Democratic Republic of Congo, Africa
Aboriginal Indigenous Art.
H = 17"
W = 3"
D = 2"

Knives, daggers and swords from the Kuba people are used as prestige items. Historical documents indicate that quantities of them were brought to the Congo by Portuguese and Dutch traders beginning around the 16th century. Many weapons were then forged by Congolese blacksmiths to emulate foreign examples. They were reserved for nobles and used for important ceremonial occasions.

Knives, axes, currency blades and spears, all made of forged iron, attest to the skills in metal of the Kuba peoples of central Africa. Most exhibit an inventive variety of form and workmanship far beyond what was functionally necessary.

Knife with long double gourd—shaped iron blade, with flat point. Embossed bas—relief dots along outer edge, half—circle designs in center. Wrapped copper wire over wooden handle.
Finley Collection
Wood W/Iron and Copper
Ritually Used
Carving / Metal Working
Art Department, MSSU
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