Ogun Ax

Carved ax handle is comprised of a kneeling male figure with rounded knob on top of his head, into which narrow end of triangular iron ax blade is embedded.
Artist Unknown, African, Yoruba Peoples Nigeria
1925-1975
Ogun is god of iron and war and is dear to those whose livelihoods rely heavily on iron such as blacksmiths, sculptors, tailors, barbers, drivers as well as scarifiers and circumcision specialists. Because Ogun is embodied in sharpened edge of iron blades, those who use it are obliged to keep him satisfied in order for their tools to operate efficaciously. To honor Ogun, people occasionally spill sacrificial dog blood, snail mucous, or other appeasing substances on their tools to satisfy the needy god’s thirst.
Gift of Bert N. LaDu, Jr.
2006/2.73
Tuesday, May 26, 2020