Yoruba  offering bowls are used to hold kola nuts as offerings of hospitality or as receptacles for the sixteen sacred palm nuts used in divination. There are two types of the Yoruba offering bowls, and the one below , with the bowl on top, is known as  Agere Ifa.


When the Yoruba offering bowl is made with a lidded bowl it is  called Opon Igede Ifa .


The kneeling position is a gesture of respect and devotion ure, bowls also go by the name of “olumeye” which means “one who knows respect”.


Label Text: The sculpture is attributed to an unknown artist in Irawo, an ancient village near the town of Oyo. Originally two children flanked the kneeling mother, who carries an infant on her back. The bowl probably had a lid carved in the form of the upper body of a fowl. In this work the artist created the image of a fecund woman who is testimony to the god’s power to bestow fertility and insure successful childbirth.


offering bowl3


The bird symbolizes honor and prosperity.



offering bowl 2
The figurine’s hairstyle shows she is from a Shango temple





yoffering bowl lid
Offering bowl lid


Many of these are 20th century carvings, as more and more people are choosing to decorate their homes with Yoruba carvings.




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