This finely cast bronze gold weight depicts a leopard, with spots represented by spiral designs, in the act of catching a tortoise in its jaws. Produced by Akan goldsmiths between the fifteenth and nineteenth centuries for the purpose of measuring gold dust, bronze weights could also be worn as charms to cure ailments, gifted with dowries of gold dust or sent as pertinent messages. Proverbs depicted in the form of the weight could provide a piece of advice, recall a debt, serve as a warning or token of friendship.
Estimated Period: 18th/19th Century
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