Ivory Box [Object of the Day-#77]

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Ivory Box from the 19th Century. Nigeria, Africa.

This ornate ivory box is made by the Edo in Nigeria, Africa. The box lid includes representations of two human like figures (on the left) and a reptile like creature (on the right). The sides of the box are decorated with a three-ply two strand twist (each strand is three-ply). Additionally, the bottom of box (not shown in photo) is decorated with a semicircle, circle and semicircle pattern. Every design carved into the box utilized a hatching or basket weave crosshatch pattern which, adds to the box’s intricate detail.

To read more about objects from the Edo in Benin and other cultures in Nigeria see Expedition article: “Treasures from Nigeria,” (Winter 1972).

Penn Museum Object #29-93-6A

See this and other objects like it in Penn Museum’s Online Collection Database.

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