The front of this fine shield is decorated by a central ridge and series of raised parallel ‘ribs’, typically found on Ethiopian hippopotamus hide shields. Hippopotamus hide - a very thick, tough leather - has been formed into a circular shape in order to make this shield.
In the Oromo culture, ownership of such objects brought social prestige, and it was important that a shield should be as perfectly round as possible.
Ex Private Collection, Ethiopia (Addis Ababa)
Estimated Period: Second Half of 19th Century