Dogon Blacksmith/ "Hogon" Antique Necklace used as Talisman Magical Charm Protector During Childbirth

$ 1,200.00

  • Dogon Blacksmith/ "Hogon" Antique Necklace used as Talisman Magical Charm Protector During Childbirth
  • Age: approx Late 19th to Early 20th Century
    Materials: Superbly linked and oxidized brass chain with Charms:
  • Tongs in bronze or copper. After enduring difficult childbirth, Bamana and Dogon mothers may wear an iron necklace with an amulet made from a miniature pair of Blacksmith Tongs. The analogy is drawn between the Blacksmith's fearless use of tongs when pulling glowing iron from his forge and a mother's courage through her "hot" ordeal.
  • A Sickle in iron. Sickles are one of the most ancient of harvesting tools, consisting of a metal blade, usually curved, attached to a short wooden handle. The short handle forces the user to harvest in a stooped or squatting position. The symbolism of the Sickle in this necklace is Bringing Forth Life, the Successful Harvest, which is often done in Childbirth in the same position as Harvesting.
  • Door Lock and Key in wood. The Dogon People used wooden bolt locks "ta koguru" to secure the doors to houses, interior rooms, granaries, and some Shrines. The lock is composed of three separate pieces: the vertical beam; the cross beam that slides into a cut-out rectangle in the back of the vertical beam, which is furnished with metal prongs; and a wooden toothbrush-like key that slides into a hollowed out part of the crossbeam. Dogon farmers store millet and other grains in thatched granaries made of mud and small stones. The Door Lock represents the blocking of misfortune or bad luck or ill thoughts or actions/ Witchcraft being "locked out". Likewise, the sanctity of home, of life and family and the inhabitants with are kept safe.
  • Dogon followers of the primordial ancestor Lébé Serou, the first Hogon or spiritual leader and wise elder, wear necklaces of iron and river stones to honor him. The egg-shaped stones, "Dougué Stone", symbolize the cosmic seed of creation and contain the bones of Lébé Serou worn smooth by his association with water. When the owner dies his necklace is hidden deep in the surrounding bush. His successor is called to the spot by the beckoning power of the stones to receive the spirit of Lébé.
  • The Spiritual Leader, often the Blacksmith of a Village or a region is called a Hogon. The Hogon, because of his skills with transforming iron into other forms is considered to possess great magical powers and is often considered powerful Sorcerer who lives as a hermit in the higher parts of the Village, the part which is considered somewhat sacred. The Hogon treats illnesses, performs Divination and Fortune Telling and represents the overall spirituality of the Community The Hogon is surrounded by many taboos: they are not to be touched, and live apart from the Community Areas and Village.
  • Origin is Dogon People of Mali