Dance staff for Èṣù

Dance staff for Èṣù


Wood, leather, cowrie shells, seeds, and natural fiber

62 cm (24 7/16 in.)

John L. Severance Fund 2018.34

Did you know?

If Eshu isn’t properly honored, trouble may befall the community or individual.


Eshu (also called Esu or Elegba) is the “trickster god” and messenger in the Yoruba pantheon of gods. Bearers of sacrifice and guardians of the ritual way of life, Eshu is associated with crossroads, the market, and home entrances. The present object is unique: It features male and female figures. Both have the extended hook-shaped coiffures (at times referred to as a phallus) typical of Eshu’s representation.

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