Ivory ring

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Ring, collected c.1898-1906
West Africa, Nigeria, Benin
Ivory

Donated by Dr P Rattray, 1913
Museum number 1913-137-74

In many regions of Africa, ivory was preferred over gold due to the powerful symbolism of the elephant. Most chieftains held a claim to all the ivory from elephants killed on their lands. Ivory, hair and bone was turned into jewellery and these items became potent symbols of authority.

Ivory ring
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