A very similar cloth to this (see photo) in the British Museum was given to a trader by the King of Dahomey in about 1865 as the acquisition notes recorded “Given by the King of Dahomey to the vendor’s father (Frederick Desnaux, trader in gold dust, palm oil, ivory etc, obit 1868) about 1865.” . See here. Interestingly this is the earliest Ghanaian textile in the BM collection. Our cloth, which is similar in size is in a beautiful and rare weft faced Ewe women’s kente with a regular alternation of red and yellow rectangular blocks, each separated by a pair of white and indigo dyed blue weft stripes, while each yellow block is bisected by a narrow blue stripe. The red in the single warp faced lower edge strip and a few of the blocks has faded to a pleasing pink colour. Although fragments and badly damaged pieces of this type of cloth turn up fairly often, it is exceptionally rare to get an early and complete example such as this. There is a single very small worn mark, shown in one of the detail photos. Dates from nineteenth century, perhaps mid C19th.
Measurement: 86ins x 44, 219 cm x 113.
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