Dolls are important in African culture. Apart from their distinct appearances, dolls have a wide range of purposes. They're used as good luck charms and amulets, decorations, gifts, toys, ritual practices, and family heirlooms. Dolls are fashioned from a variety of materials including clay, wood, and textiles.
THE NAME NAMJI DOLL!
The Namji Doll is the most beautiful and attractive of all the dolls in Africa, according to experts. This explains why collectors are drawn to auctions like moths to a flame. The older the Namji Doll, the greater its value.
Dowayo dolls, also known as Namji Dolls, are fertility dolls originating from the Namji tribe of North Cameroon. This doll is made out of carved African Rosewood by the blacksmiths of this society. Namji Dolls have been in production since the late 19th Century.
DESIGN AND CONSTRUCTION
Namji Dolls are made from African Rosewood, a tree native to the Democratic Republic of Congo, Cameroon, Gabon, and Equatorial Guinea. A single block of African Rosewood is hand carved into a geometric form and adorned with multi colored beads, metals, fiber, cowrie shells, coins, and even leather. Each doll has an individual stature and face expression. Namji Dolls are unique works of art because they are created by hand and thus have become collectibles with high prices. In auctions houses and private collections around the world, antique Namji Dolls fetch significant sums.
APPEARANCE OF DOLLS
Namji dolls come in a variety of geometric forms. Some are short, some are long and willowy, while others are chubby or thin. The dolls are brown and have a big round head with drawn eyes, nose, and mouth that lends them a funny facial expression. The dolls stand in an unnatural rigid manner.
Namji dolls are made of multi-colored beads and glass pearls, and their bodies are wrapped in textured woven fabric. The hands and feet are completed with chains of cowrie shells.
Glass pearls are frequently used to fasten colonial coins around the shoulders, arms, and legs of dolls. Although the majority of the dolls are female, there are also male versions available.
Namji Dolls are bright. They're adorned with colorful bead necklaces and cowries, so they're really vibrant. There's no two ways about it: Namji Dolls are unique since each is different from the next.
FUNCTION BEHIND NAMJI DOLLS
Namji dolls are fertility dolls given to bride during a wedding ceremony. These fertility dolls, according to the Namji, contain powerful charms that aid the bride in becoming pregnant and defending her against malevolent spirits that cause infertility and difficult birth. They also think the dolls help prevent miscarriages and enable safe births.
The bride wears the doll as a good luck charm in her pocket or on her person, wherever she goes. When her desire is fulfilled and she gives birth to a child, the doll is placed on the family altar or handed down to her daughter.
Namji Dolls are also given to little girls for role play. Young ladies carry the dolls on their backs and treat them like their children, feeding them, bathing them, dressing them clothes, and sleeping with them. It is thought that playing with these dolls encourages young women to think about and prepare for future responsibilities as mothers.
Namji Dolls are also popular for proposing marriage. A guy gives a doll to the woman he wishes to marry, and if she accepts it, it signifies her acceptance of his proposal. She then carries the doll around as a fertility figure in order to attract good fortune. As soon as she has a kid, she leaves the doll to her daughter.
Namjis are now commonly bought by individuals as decorative ornaments for their homes and workplaces. Namji Dolls are Africa's most beautiful dolls, according to their distinctiveness and cultural legacy. As a result, they are excellent tabletop decorations.
Namji Dolls are stunning, traditional, and make wonderful presents. We recommend that you get started collecting them right away. There are a variety of shapes and appearances available. Furthermore, since no two Namji dolls are alike, your collection will be as varied and diverse as the many tribes and cultures found throughout Africa!