The slave trade in East Africa thrived through the turn of the 20th century under the oversight of Tippu Tip who conspired with Leopold of Belgium to divide control in 1887. This sword is of that period and was used for household raids where fighting took place indoors. Its 37 å?‰۝ length allows it to be used as a cut and thrust weapon, like the Zulu assegai. It is finely adorned with professional carving, almost surely by a Kuba carver and pewter ferrule. The iron blade bolster is decorated to match, also in the Kuba taste. Such decoration reflected the status and success of its owner commanding respect from his peers and generating terror in his victims.

Item ID: FNS7809

Certificate of Authenticity

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