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Old 10th December 2021, 01:11 PM   #4
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Join Date: May 2020
Posts: 437

as they do come in plural sizes, hereby a few pics as examples

In addition to being a functional blade, the mambeli short sword served as a symbol of prestige and as currency. Most were carried under the belt without a sheath; examples with a sheath are rare. While their dimensions vary considerably—from 8 to 36 inches—the size of the handle is always relatively small.

The mambeli short sword was produced in large quantities by the Boa (Ababua, Bobwa), Angba (including the Mongelima), and Hanga. They were also collected among numerous neighboring populations, including the Bandia, Zande, Mangbetu, Nzakara, Barambo, Mba, Ndaaka, Bati, Binja, and Bengé. Their popularity and widespread distribution resulted in innumerable local variants designed by neighboring peoples.

The Boa migrated to their current homeland in northeastern D.R. Congo from the west, and arrived before the Bandia and Barambo migrated from the northwest, and the Mangbetu from the east. The Zande then arrived from the north and settled nearby. The Mangbetu, Zande, and Bandia exerted a preponderant influence on the Boa, particularly in their clothing, daggers, and shields. Despite this strong influence, the Boa remained independent (Elsen, De fer et de fierté, 2003).

A traditional African weapon can be a striking and affordable addition to any décor. The sleek lines and incised patterns of these knives, swords, and axes bring to mind modern sculpture, though these pieces were not created as art. Many were made strictly for combat, and others served as status symbols.

The Zande of central Africa made and used knives in battle until the end of the 19th century. Later, they used these weapons as ritual objects. ( Douglas Deihl, African Weapons as Design Elements in a Modern Interior, 2013)
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Last edited by gp; 10th December 2021 at 01:30 PM.
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