FANG Statue Africa Reliquary Ritual Bark wood Basket Biyeri fig.

FANG Statue Africa Reliquary Ritual Bark wood Basket Biyeri figure Cameroon

Fang reliquary guardian figures are among the ritual objects used by the Byeri, an association devoted to honoring ancestors in order to obtain their goodwill. These figurative sculptures were placed on top of bark boxes containing the bones of revered ancestors, such as male founders of villages and women with exceptional spiritual powers.

Each lineage's ancestors were located in family shrines where memorials or reliquary boxes containing their bones under the care of an elder known as the Esa who was the most senior elder the oldest living member of the clan and thereby closest to the ancestors. The ancestors were consulted before any serious event such as hunting, traveling, marriage, war, or planting was undertaken. Containers made of either bark or woven basketry known as nsekh byeri were surmounted by sculpted figures known as eyema-o-byeri that guarded the remains of  Fang ancestors that included the bones and especially the skull of the ancestor,  The container would also become a repository for magical devices. ~~~~~~~ Our great Fang Reliquary Statue measures 18” Tall X 5-1/2 across. The figure at top alone, measures  8-1/2” Tall. Wonderful condition with some wood loss at the bark bottom of cylinder. Great patina and ageing with some minor insect holes. Circa 20th Century, Collected in Cameroon Africa late 1990’s. A wonderful artifact for your African collection. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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  • Item #: S~FANG Reliquary statue small
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