African, Bamileke peoples, Cameroon
mid 20th century
Overall: 22.9 x 78.7 cm (9 x 31 in.)
Medium or Technique
Feathers, vine, fiber, cotton cloth, string
Not On View
During ceremonial occasions, rulers and royal officials in the many kingdoms of the Bamileke peoples in the Grassfields region of Cameroon wear flamboyant headdresses made from feathers, among them the red tail feathers of the grey parrot. Such hats also appear as part of the costume of masked performers. The feathers attach to a mesh cap and the entire headdress can be turned inside out so that the fiber cap protects them.
1980s, acquired in Paris by by anonymous donors; 2009, anonymous year-end gift to the MFA. (Accession date: January 20, 2010)