Spencer Museum of Art The University of Kansas

Welcome to the Spencer Collection

pair of leg rattles
  • Ndebele peoples
  • pair of leg rattles, late 1800s–1996
  • Where object was made: Bulawayo, Zimbabwe
  • seeds, nylon
  • Object Length: a) 236 cm
    Object Length: a) 92 15/16 in
    Object Length: b) 214 cm
    Object Length: b) 84 1/4 in
  • Gift of Sue Schuessler
  • Not on display
  • 2007.0308.a,b

This pair of very long leg rattles is comprised of many small light brown seed pods strung together at regular intervals on two pieces of twisted nylon twine. They have twine at the ends left without seed pods to act as ties.

These were worn wrapped around the legs while dancing. When the dancer went into a trance and fell over, others removed the rattles.