Medicine man's bag, Democratic Republic of Congo, 1870-1920

Made:
1870-1920 in Democratic Republic of Congo
maker:
M'Boio people

Medicine man's bag, containing skull bones of a much feared medicine man of the Congo, M' Boio tribe, Congolese, 1870-1920

This reliquary from the Ogowe River Basin in Gabon in Africa contains the bones and relics of a venerated ancestor who was said to be a much feared traditional healer – once referred to as a ‘medicine man’ – of the M’Boio tribe. At times of need a community might bring together all its reliquaries in the belief that their combined power would offer greater protection against an ongoing or expected danger, such as disease.

Details

Category:
Ethnography and Folk Medicine
Object Number:
A657377
Materials:
bag, string, binding, hide, bones, brass, copper, handle, wood, skull
type:
medicine man's outfits
taxonomy:
  • furnishing and equipment
  • container - receptacle
  • furnishing and equipment
  • container - receptacle
  • ceremonial container
credit:
Wellcome Trust

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