Bamileke Pot

A beautiful Bamileke pot with a stunning traditional design and style.

Tribe: Bamileke

Origin: Grasslands Cameroon

Approx Age: Mid 20th Century

Materials: Wood

Dimensions cm: 52 tall x 19 diameter

Ref. Number: 1221


An absolutely stunning Bamileke pot for keeping cola nuts in for the villagers during ceremonial dances. Carved with traditional animals, the bird representing the messenger and the buffalo signifying strength. The inside of the pot is slightly soiled from past usage and the lid has a crack, the underneath of the pot shows age where age lines are very visible.

Provenance: Ex-private UK collection, collected in the early 1960s.


A beautifully carved Bamileke pot such as this would have sat on the sidelines of a ceremonial dance or procession, for villagers to help themselves to cola nuts. This piece has a lovely dark brown patina and has been in a collection since the 1960s from when it was collected. This has been authenticated to have been tribally used.

Bamileke pots are very endearing from the point of the western eye, yet the carvings and meanings of the Bamileke are very powerful and certain pots very sacred. Some are carved for protection, good luck and others association with power, the leopard is usually within this association. Animals are depicted quite heavily within Bamileke carving, be it spiders, elephants, leopards, birds, buffalo and the Chameleon and more. These are seen on pots, masks, staffs, house posts, drums, stools and also utilitarian objects and of course, royal thrones and chairs.

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