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Sukuma Shield

  • Sukuma Shield
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Item 982
10.00 LBS
Maximum Purchase:
1 unit(s)

Product Description

Within the borders of Tanzania co-exist approximately 120 ethnic groups speaking languages representing all four major African language groups. These include Khoisan, or "click"speaking hunter-gatherers, Nilotic-speaking pastoralists (such as the Maasai), Cushitic speakers, and Bantu speakers. The largest ethnic groups include the Sukuma (over three million), and the Chagga, Haya, and Nyamwezi (over one million each). Despite the tremendous cultural and linguistic diversity among Tanzanians, ethnic groups are united by the use of a common language—Swahili—and a sense of national identity. The Sukuma culture is the largest in Tanzania. The Sukuma people live in an area called Usukuma which is located to the west and south of Lake Victoria, the second largest lake in the world. The Sukuma are predominately farmers. They covet shields for protection against predators and as vehicles to display tribal pride. Recently there has been a resurgence in this pride making us privy to more and more of their works. On display is a beautifully crafted, used hardwood, saddle style shield with Sukuma etchings. Despite being compact at 22 inches long it is a hefty, sturdy object that could easily deliver a crushing blow or stave off an attack. The shield has obtained an attractive rich patina and sports a few worn inner edges from use.

Please click photo for enlargement!


Dimensions: 22 inches long x 10 inches across the widest point. 

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