From the collection of: Iain Norman


18th century perhaps possible but far more likely early to mid 19th at the earliest - Hausa or Nupe


An excellent and ornate takouba I was lucky enough to acquire from Ashoka Arts. These ornate swords are often seen with the addition of brass stoppers on the blades, although this one lacks it. More exaggerated examples have extremely triangular blades and were probably intended as status pieces. However this particular example is very much a ‘user.’

The blade is flat and wide showing good age and sharpness. This flat profile is typical of the style and may be an indication of a form that developed separately from the longer triple fullered and single fullered takouba.

The elaborately decorated hilt is of similar design and construction as other Hausa brass work but exhibits a higher quality of engraving lacking on newer pieces. Very much a wealthy man’s sword this piece represents a pinnacle in Hausa craftsmanship and geometric design. A period picture of a Hausa man with a very similar sword included in the gallery.


Overall: 86cm/34 in.