Made in the West African state of Asante, present-day Ghana, this spectacular trophy head depicts a decapitated high status enemy. Such heads would have been attached to ceremonial swords and were a common motif known as ‘heads of Worosa’ named after the former chief of the Banda state who was assassinated by Asantehene (king of Asante) for killing Asante traders.
Sir Richard Wallace acquired this object, along with other gold Asante pieces, in 1874 and is now on display in the new exhibition, Sir Richard Wallace: The Collector, on the lower ground floor of the museum.
Dimensions: 16cm x 11.5cm
Printed in the UK
Object Details: Gold Trophy Head, Asante (Ghana), probably 19th Century