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Soul Container (Eraminhô)

Arts of Africa

Eraminhô are repositories for the souls of the dead. According to Bijagó beliefs, a person’s soul lives on after the body, but only as long as it is remembered by the person’s family. Thus it is necessary to create a repository for the soul and to provide it with sacrifices.
MEDIUM Wood, earth, crushed plant materials, copper alloy chain, sacrificial materials
DATES late 19th or early 20th century
DIMENSIONS 14 1/2 in. (36.8 cm)  (show scale)
COLLECTIONS Arts of Africa
CREDIT LINE Gift of Ruth R. Gross
CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Soul Container "Eraminho" or "Orebok Ocoto"of wood, cloth and metal. Human, wooden based head, with tubular body. Figure covered with cloth, which is covered with patination. Two strands of patinated metal chains around neck. CONDITION: Chain around neck corroded as well as the greenstone eyes. Left side of head partially bared to the wood.
MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
CAPTION Bijagó. Soul Container (Eraminhô), late 19th or early 20th century. Wood, earth, crushed plant materials, copper alloy chain, sacrificial materials, 14 1/2 in. (36.8 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Ruth R. Gross, 71.176.4. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 71.176.4_SL1.jpg)
IMAGE overall, 71.176.4_SL1.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
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