African dynasties were famous for making unique weapons before colonial era. These weapons were used during war, or for their protection while grazing animals, or during the traditional ceremonies. Some weapons were used for pride.
The most notable among these weapons was the spear, made with a long sheath and metal head.
Bow and arrow were also very commonly made weapons. Then there were shields which were made from animals hide.
Some communities still use these although it has become rare sight to see tribal communities using these tradition weapons now. They are used as show pieces around the world.
Here is a list of common weapons made by tribal communities of Africa for their own use.
Swords were made with hippo or rhino hides. These swords were made in decorative forms. The skin of hippo hide was formed into bumps while soft, and intricate designs incised into them.
Ethiopian shields were made with tough and thick animal hides that were used while still wet and pounded onto wooden forms. These forms were dried till ready and then removed. These are the most impressive and therefore prized possessions in Africa.
These swords were ceremonial and were carried by palace guards as symbols of honour. Swords were awarded to citizens also as merit in war or other activities.
Shields are convex, and round or elliptical artefacts, used by Masai people to hunt lions, who live in huge massive grasslands of Africa, in southern Kenya. The shield is made of buffalo hide sewn onto a wooden frame. It also has a handle, attached at the centre with leather strips. These buffalo hides are dyed in vegetable dyes to make them colourful and attractive. They are also used as a pride objects.
It is a club with a head. The top or the head is made with a tree root which is very strong.
Simi, Wakamba, Luo, Buru, and Luhya are some of the other famous weapons of Kenya.
Today the lines between civilians and military are quite distict. But in olden days the demarcarion lines between military and civilians were light and therefore ancient African weaponry was made for use in religious, or political rituals and ceremonies, and were not always designed to kill.
Rocks were also considered weapons in very old times in Africa. Pebbles were chipped into blades and used as weapons for hunting.
The rough weapons advanced into finer weapons but many were designed for decoration and pride.
You can use African weapons to beautify your home. Buy real African weapons for home decor today.