Old African Knife – Ikul / Ikula – Kuba – DR Congo
Early 20th century. Iron, wood. Cm. 37,3 high (14.69″); weight: grams 410,7 (14.49 oz).
The ikul consists of a leaf-shaped blade (iron or copper or wood) and a wooden handle finished with a round knob with sometimes decorative inlays. The blade has a well-marked central edge and can be decorated with engravings. They are ceremonial knives, some of which are made solely of wood (handle and blade) and richly decorated.
This Ikul has 4 holes on the blade probably made to identify the clan it belongs to.
According to tradition, King Shyaam aMbul aNgoong would have introduced the ikul in the seventeenth century after a long period of war. The king would then have forbidden the shongo sword to replace it with the ikul, a symbol of peace.
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