Sunday, 2 March 2008
I finished another five Ngoni today. Two of the Ngoni (on the left) have the Zebra mane headresses popular in Southern Tanganyika.
I worked on bending the shields with some pliers and they look better than the flat ones I painted last week.
The Ngoni shields were very similar to Zulu ones and so here are some pictures of Zulu shields to show the construction and colouring. The shield is made from cow-hide with its natural colouring.
On the back you can see how the carrying pole was attached. This is an original pole from a Zulu War period shield. Finding these now is quite unusual as those brought back to Britain as souvenirs were usually rolled up and the pole discarded.
The fur decoration seen at the top of Zulu and Ngoni shield poles was usually made from Antelope or Springbok fur and so would have been a light, sandy tan colour.