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HOME : African & Tribal Art : Benin : Benin Bronze Sculpture of a Lion
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Benin Bronze Sculpture of a Lion - Z.718
Origin: Benin City, Nigeria
Circa: 16 th Century AD to 18 th Century AD
Dimensions: 6.5" (16.5cm) high
Catalogue: V1
Collection: African
Medium: Bronze

Location: UAE
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The large head is turned to the side, slightly tilted so the pointed ears and eyes are positioned at an angle. Both front and rear legs are at an acute angle to the tubular, horizontal body; the rear legs are stretched out to suggest the animal is on alert. The feline's body is covered in incising to imitate fur, and even muscular and skeletal structure. The tail is curved to rest on the left flank, the mouth is open and the appliqu├ęd eyes stare quizzically. Such charming sculptures as this one were made as elite items for the kings of Benin, and bear a strong resemblance to the aquamanile vessels of Europe, seen by the people of Benin in their contacts with the Portuguese. - (Z.718)


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