Baule Prestige Knife - Côte d'Ivoire

Among the many remarkable art traditions for which the Baule are known is their manufacture of elaborate and beautiful knives.

This hourglass-curved blade, sheathed in a sewn leather scabbard decorated with coral-colored shells, would have conspicuously reflected the prestige of its bearer. Carved wooden handle, shells affixed with leather. Some corrosion to blade.

Metal, wood, leather, shells, fiber
Late 19th century
H: 19" W: 6 1/2"
ex John B. Elliott collection
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