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Short sword

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This short sword (ikul) has delicately inlaid brass on its wooden handle, which recalls Kuba raffia mat patterns, and engraved fullers in its copper blade. Such short swords are associated with masculine power and Kuba royalty. Previously, swords such as this would have been carried by all adult...

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1970s, acquired in Paris by Geneviève McMillan (b. 1922 - d. 2008), Cambridge, MA; 2008, to the Geneviève McMillan and Reba Stewart Foundation, Cambridge; 2009, gift of the Geneviève McMillan and Reba Stewart Foundation to the MFA. (Accession Date: June 17, 2009)

Credit Line

Gift of Geneviève McMillan in memory of Reba Stewart

African, Kuba peoples, Democratic Republic of the Congo, 20th century, 1950–2000

Object Place

Democratic Republic of the Congo


Overall: 30 x 7 x 6 cm (11 13/16 x 2 3/4 x 2 3/8 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Wood, copper alloy


Africa and Oceania


Arms and armor