Tongo Players Costume

This is a belt, or strap, made from a length of woven cotton cloth, to which are attached 9 bells. It is thought to have been used by the Tongo Players, a name given to a group of professional witch finders who were called in to investigate and detect members of the Leopard Society, blamed for a series of murders in Imperri chiefdom in the early 1890s. All Tongo activity was later banned by the British Colonial Government. The World Museum Liverpool catalogue notes that this item was worn by the Hakawa of the Tongo Players.

Further Information

  • Type: Religious/ritual equipment, charms, Costume, dress
  • Object: Tongo Players Costume
  • Materials: Textile, Metal
  • Culture Group: Mende, Sherbro
  • Dimensions: 150mm x 200mm x 320mm (Coiled)
  • Production Date: Pre 1910
  • Associated Places: Sierra Leone (Created and collected)
  • Associated People: L. Probyn (Donor); G. W. Page (Collector)
  • Museum: World Museum Liverpool Sierra Leone Collection
  • Accession Number: LIVCM.

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