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Bell

Accession Number
2000/2.38

Title
Bell

Artist(s)

Object Creation Date
circa 1890-1910

Medium & Support
brass

Dimensions
5 13/16 in x 2 15/16 in (14.76 cm x 7.46 cm)

Credit Line
Gift of Dr. James and Vivian Curtis

Subject matter
This object listed as made by Kirdi peoples, while most likely correct, is not without issue. “Kirdi”, meaning pagan, was the label given to the various peoples from northern Cameroon, northeastern Nigeria, and southern Chad by neighboring Fulani and Kanuri peoples because they did not practice Islam, while the latter do. The people collectively known as “Kirdi” are actually many different cultural groups with their own customs. However, due to a lack of information on where exactly this object came from, it is not possible to say with certainty which group of people created it.

The exact use of this bell is not known; however, the loop at the top of the handle suggests it may possibly have been attached to a woman's apron or belt.

References Cited:
Gebauer, Paul. 1979. Art of Cameroon. Portland, Or.: Portland Art Museum.
Lembezat, Bertrand. 1961. Les populations païennes du Nord-Cameroun et de l'Adamaoua. Paris: Presses Universitaires de France.
Lembezat, Bertrand. 1952. Mukulehe; un clan montagnard du Nord-Cameroun; coutumes, rites, croyances. Paris: Berger-Levrault.
Northern, Tamara. 1984. The Art of Cameroon. Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution.
Page, Donna. 2007. A Cameroon World. New York: QCC Art Gallery Press. 

Physical Description
Hand-held bell with a short handle ending in a loop. The dome-shaped bell has a pattern of incised lines around the top edge and a grid-like pattern around the lip. Inside the bell hangs a small clapper. 

Primary Object Classification
Metalwork

Primary Object Type
bell

Collection Area
African

Rights
If you are interested in using an image for a publication, please visit http://umma.umich.edu/request-image for more information and to fill out the online Image Rights and Reproductions Request Form. Keywords
bell
costume accessories
ornaments (object genre)
sound devices (equipment)

1 Related Resource

Visual Cultures of Islam- Metalwork
(Part of: Visual Cultures of Islam )

& Author Notes

All Rights Reserved