'Marriage badges' (Ekipa) such as this would been given by a young Hemba man to his fiancee. The number of Ekipa gifted by the man was indicative of his wealth and number of cattle he possessed.
This 'marriage badge' has been carved into a bulbous form, and features dark-coloured decorative bands. As well as the number of Ekipa gifted, the markings of each pendant were also significant. The lug at the back of the Ekipa would have been used to attach the badge to strips of leather, which were then hung from a wide belt worn by the bride around her waist.
Estimated Period: First Half of 20th Century
Ex Private Collection, UK
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