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    Artist Name:

    Yoruba Artist

    Nationality & Life Dates:





    ca. 1875–1925




    16 1/2 x 2 x 3 1/2 inches

    Credit Line:

    Gift of Bernard and Patricia Wagner

    Accession Number:


    Currently Not on View
    On the day of his coronation, a Yoruba king is presented with a ceremonial sword that represents Odùduwà’s sanction of his appointment. In some cases a king may carry a scepter such as this one, whose bird motif complements the one on his crown, to further proclaim his divine authority and his ability to use it to his subjects’ benefit. The bird at the top of the scepter identifies the king as a descendant of Odùduwà and emphasizes his role as an intermediary between his subjects and the orisa, or gods, in the same way that a bird mediates between heaven and earth.

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    Please Note: Not all permanent collection works are currently on view. Please contact the Museum concerning the on view status for a specific work if required.