(early 19th C.)
The Bangwa live in the grass savannah area in the northwest of Cameroon. They are a small trikbe which is part of the large ethnic group of the Bamileke. The skilful; Bangwa woodcutters are famous for their horrifying masks for the “Brotherhood of the night”. The touching figurine embodies the mother of twins, an “Anyi”. As such, she can be rcognized by her special hairstyle, her necklace made of the teeth of a panther (which she has turned on her back) and her bracelets. Her sitting pose and the decorated stool indicate she belongs to an important family. When a woman gives birth to twins she is assigned an almost godlike status. As Anyi she receives valuable necklaces with beads and two riutal mugs. Special wooden figurines are cut in honour of herself and her husband (the Tanyi). The Anyi dances at parties and funerals and leads riutals to beg fertility from the earth. By waving a branch of the tree of peace (the Dracaena or the Dragon’s Blood Tree) she can reconcile fighting parties.