Small Fon bronze depicting a Chief, also called a King in West Africa, sitting on a three-legged stool. He is wearing a smock, a plaid which is slung around the body. A cap covers his head. The stool has attachment holes in its legs and once formed part of an iron ‘Asen’ altar which has disintegrated long ago. These altars served as monuments to the dead for the Fon people. Placed in family shrines, such altars became the focus of interaction with the ancestors. Very often human altar figures were flanked by animals or cherished objects. This figure dates from the early 20th century. Ouidah Fon culture. Benin. West Africa. Height 7.5 cm. Width 4 cm. Depth 5 cm.