BLACK PANTHER MOVIE: Featured The Ivory Mask of The Great Benin Empire’s Queen Mother

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The BLACK PANTHER movie amidst controversy succeeded in bringing to life fragments of African history. Before seeing this movie I perceived it as a bit spiteful, but my view of it changed.


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My judgment changed as a result of their detailed strategy in exposing the African heritage, they achieved this by using beautifully plotted scenes from a robust storyline. For instance, it showed a replica of my tribal mask (a carved ivory portrait of Queen Mother Idia), which was carted away alongside other traditional Bini artifacts during the Great Benin Expedition in 1897.

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A couple years ago, my high school* history teacher mentioned that our former King the Oba of Benin made efforts to reclaim these artifacts but to no avail. Recently, his son the new Oba after his recent coronation is doing the same. He wishes to see them displayed in the Benin Museum.

* I attended high school in Benin City, Nigeria

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There are three of these ivory masks scattered in the Western world.

Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York (United States)


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British Museum in London (United Kingdom)

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Linden Museum in Stuttgart (Germany)

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Wikipedia (Benin Ivory Mask)


Vanguard Nigeria

The Kingdom of Benin (Khan Academy)


6 replies »

  1. I hope one day these historical artifacts may be returned to the people and places to whom they belong.
    It’s sad that people have thought of national relics as treasure. This has happened all around the world, of course.
    The worst is when these things, and often whole cultures or peoples, are lost to the world for a virtual eternity.

    Seek peace,


    Liked by 1 person

  2. Pillaging artifacts is like raping a whole culture. More museums should consider showcasing exquisitely crafted replicas but I don’t know how the public would react. Would not matter to me. Whether stolen or legally obtained the holders of artifacts should pay continuous “rent” to the home country of origin and that would be of great value to esp Third world Countries.

    Liked by 1 person

    • “Whether stolen or legally obtained the holders of artifacts should pay continuous “rent” to the home country of origin. . .” You said it all Carl R D’Agostino, that was the point I was trying to make. I know history cannot be changed but steps like paying royalties to the sources of these museum gallery artworks will not be a bad idea, I bet the owners of those items will really appreciate the effort considering the British museum maintains and preserves these artifacts meticulously.


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