This object possibly supported an ivory tusk on an altar. The depiction of four female figures holding gongs suggests an association with an iyoba, or queen mother. Two figures strike bird gongs, which symbolize the infallibility of the oba.
Cast copper alloy cylindrical stand with a hole on the top and base flange. Attached on the sides are two female figures playing bird gongs, and two with gongs. The figures are seperated by incised panels of interlace patterns.
Benin Punitive Expedition, 1897
Dr. J.P. Howe, 1897 to 1934
Capt. J.S. Howe, 1934 to 1961
Sotheby and Co. auction, London, November 20, 1961
Joseph H. Hirshhorn, Greenwich, Connecticut, 1961 to 1966
Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C., 1966 to 1985
Freyer, Bryna. 1987. Royal Benin Art in the Collection of the National Museum of African Art. Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press, no. 10.