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Batcham headdress. Batcham is a small Bamileke kingdom in the northwest region of the Grassland. Its name was given to this kind of headdresses, although they were very popular also among the Bangwa and the Bamileke. In these chiefdoms, power was held by the Fon, a king who was supported by powerful brotherhoods or societies. Batcham masks belonged to one of these societies and were designed to intimidate and to maintain social order. They were used mainly for the enthronement or the burial of the Fon or notables. It could also be seen during a special dance that was only performed at the royal residence to the sounds of ritual pipes. This ceremony marked the end of the harvest and the coming of new year. Certain authors see this mask as a totally unrealistic depiction of a hippopotamus head emerging from the water.
Check out a very very old mask like this at the Metropolitan Museum of Art