Showcasing the art and ritual of the African and African-diaspora religions

figure of the Goddess Iemanjá

Catalog Number: C018


25 cm L, 24 cm W


Religion and Denomination: Candomblé (Brazil)
Country of Origin: Brazil
Ethnographic Origin: Brazilian (Brazil)
Materials: Beads
Usage: N/A
Detailed Description of Significance:

Iemanjá is the orixá of the sea. Clear and a combination of blue and clear are her colors. Silver-colored metal, as used here for her accessories, is the type of metal used to represent Iemanjá. She is thought of as a black woman and, appropriately wears an elaborate and beautiful white dress and has dark skin. The two accessories draped around her body on chains are fish, indicative of her role as the doll goddess of the sea. Her crown, in many ways, signifies that she is the owner of the sea. Also, appropriately, she carries a decorated abebé in her right hand.      

A choroão or a crybaby veil drapes from her crown.  According to Sr. Costa choroão is meant to imply tears but it is also reminiscent of beaded veils on Yoruba royal crowns which covered the monarch’s faces and protected onlookers from their gaze. The figure is not a ritual object, but a tourist object.