Luo shields (Okumba)

Luo shields (okumba) from the  late nineteenth and early twentieth century period for the Luo, were distinct in shape and bore distinctive geometric patterns. The most common shields were elliptical in form and could be folded to cover the warrior’s front and side.

They were made from patches of cow hide or buffalo hide with skin strips and thongs sealed with honey, blood and wax. “They had a wooden rim and handle. They were used in fighting and in ceremonies like Tero Buru, which is performed after the burial of an elder.”


Traditional Luo shields.



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