Additional Information: A copper alloy/brass knife in a wonderful brass shealth highly decorated with beautiful geometric patterns. The knife's handle is ornamented with figures. The blade is image out of iron. This knife is attributed to the Akan people. Similar knife were found in Nigeria. The figures on the top are more likely Akan than Nigerians in style. This is a rare example of its kind. It would add a unique piece in any collection of African Art .
The Akan people (Asante, Baule, Fante ...) are world-famous for their beautiful artworks, including wood carvings, textiles and metalwork pieces like their prized cast gold-weights. While their primary medium for metalworking is brass, they also occasionally use bronze and iron. This exceptional knife in sheath is an interesting example of their metalworking skills, and demonstrates the Akan penchant for adding symbols to their artworks. The symbols on the knife are similar to those seen on gold-weights, on brass containers, and obviously had significance to the blacksmith who made it.
Akan ceremonial objects, like this knife, their stools and larger cast and hand-made metal pieces, indicate status, power and the succession of chiefs and kings. Held or displayed in public rituals and appearances, they functioned as royal scepters, and symbolically powerful weapons. Akan knives are rare compared to those of the Congo and elsewhere, and also more elaborate.
I have examined this piece and agree with the description.
Niangi Batulukisi, PhD.