19th century. Azande, whose name literally means “owners of much land,” entered the 19th century with a history of conquest and expansion. The descendants of great warriors faced economic and demographic changes which turned them to the industry which harvested humans for export to the Arab world, slavery. The trade was curtailed by the Anglo-French convention of 1899, before which it was the major occupation of Azande warriors. This sword is of typical proportions which evolved from its use in chaotic close quarters. It is finely forged with flared base below the stepped bolster. The plain wood grip suggests collection early in the owner’s career, perhaps resulting from his death which was a constant prospect for slavers. Total length, 17 1/4”.