Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice


    Africa: Kenya
    Shield (ndome)
    Wood, pigment, leather
    Height: 23 inches Width: 13 ½ inches

    The highly unusual design of the Kikuyu shields of the ndome type results from their specialized use in the initiation of junior warriors, during which the youths would paint their bodies and wear these distinctive shields on the upper left arm. "Characteristic features of ndome shields are the carved and painted series of serrated grooves in the form of ...(crescents) on the reverse side and a small hole in the centre through which the dancer may peer. Patterns on the obverse side traditionally followed the shape of an eye or eyelid. Craftsmen called muumburo, or the initiates themselves, scraped, redesigned and repainted these shields, which the initiates customarily inherited like treasured heirlooms from older male members of their family." (P. Benitez-Johannot in P. Benitez-Johannot and Jean Paul Barbier. Shields. Africa, Southeast Asia and Oceania, from the Collections of the Barbier-Mueller Museum. Munich, London, New York: Prestel, 2000, p.116).

    Other than some pigment loss and some scraping or chipping, the shield is in good condition.

    Christie's, Paris: sale 5307, lot 12
    Gary Herdershott, Little Rock

    Condition Report*: Condition report available upon request.
    *Heritage Auctions strives to provide as much information as possible but encourages in-person inspection by bidders. Statements regarding the condition of objects are only for general guidance and should not be relied upon as complete statements of fact, and do not constitute a representation, warranty or assumption of liability by Heritage. Some condition issues may not be noted in the condition report but are apparent in the provided photos which are considered part of the condition report. Please note that we do not de-frame lots estimated at $1,000 or less and may not be able to provide additional details for lots valued under $500. All lots are sold "AS IS" under the Terms & Conditions of Auction.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    June, 2007
    7th Thursday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 1,718

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    19.5% of the successful bid (minimum $9) per lot.

    Sold for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)
    Track Item

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
    2. Bid online
    3. Free Collector newsletter
    4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
    5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Only 15 days left to consign to the 2020 October 6 Design Signature Auction - Dallas!

    Learn about consigning with us

    I look forward to several future consignments with Heritage and with your continued guidance and expertise.
    William Levin, M.D.,
    Beverly Hills, CA
    View More Testimonials receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source:

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search