Object Place: Democratic Republic of the Congo
Overall: 32.4 x 30.5 cm (12 3/4 x 12 in.)
Medium or Technique
Wood, iron, brass tacks
Not On View
Iron knives, swords, and axes are more than armaments; they are powerful symbols of prestige and authority. Many weapons, including this Teke prestige axe, are intricately adorned with abstract geometric patterns, figurative elements, western-made objects, and copper accents, all of which are intended to increase the status of the object’s owner. This axe is adorned with brass tacks of European manufacture.
1980s, acquired in Paris by anonymous donors; 2009, year-end anonymous gift to the MFA. (Accession date: January 20, 2010)