A well carved, painted, terracotta pipe made by skilled potters of either the Bamessing or the Babungo on the Cameroon Grasfields.
Originally, only Kings, chiefs and court officials would have smoked prestige pipes of this kind but the potters were quick to create these pipes for sale to Europeans even before the colonial period.
The pipe portrays a dignatory with his elaborate hat (possibly beaded). There are pipe heads of this type on display in the Liverpool World Museum. This item was probably made early in the 20th Century.
Condition is very good. There are chips to the headress (please see pictures) and wear to the painted areas.
Height 6.75 inches(17cm)