Fragment of a Kneeling Figure

A work made of terracotta.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of terracotta.

Date:

11th/14th century

Artist:

Inland Niger Delta region, Mali
Northern Africa and the Sahel

About this artwork

Little is known about the meaning and function of the terracotta figures discovered in various sites around the abandoned city of Jenné-Jeno in modern Mali. Archaeological excavations revealed that figures like this partial example were set into the walls and foundations of buildings, suggesting they served a religious purpose. The loincloth and stack of bracelets on this figure indicated high social rank. The snakes wrapping around his torso are common in the iconography of the Inland Niger Delta and undoubtedly had symbolic significance.

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Arts of Africa

Artist

Niger Delta

Title

Fragment of a Kneeling Figure

Origin

Mali

Date

1001–1400

Medium

Terracotta

Dimensions

47.6 × 23.5 × 30.5 cm (18 3/4 × 9 1/4 × 12 in.)

Credit Line

Maurice D. Galleher, Ada Turnbull Hertle, and Laura R. Magnuson funds

Reference Number

1983.917

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email .

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