Seereer Artefacts

Junjung from Siin (19th century)

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Junjung from Siin (19th century)
A 19th century Seereer junjung from Siin. Showcased at the Worlds Columbian Exposition (1893). The junjung was a royal and war drum that was beaten to the battlefield by the griots of Seereer kings when they accompanied the kings to battle. The Kingdom of Siin in particular was so renowned for its junjung tradition that there is a Senegambian saying in reference to it: "junjung ba sa Siin" - meaning "the junjung all the way from Siin." This proverb is in reference to the fact that, in warfare between Seereer kingdoms and non-Seereer kingdoms (particularly the Wolof kingdoms), when non-Seereer kings hear the sound of the junjung approaching, they know that the Seereer kings are approaching ready for war. Non-Seereer kings and their armies can either flee or fight. Playing the junjung to battle meant that fleeing was not an option for the Seereer kings and their armies. Only victory or death would do. As a result, the junjung resonated fear in non-Seereer kings. That was particularly so at the Battle of Fandane-Thiouthioune, also called the Battle of Somb, where the King of Cayor (Lat Joor) tried to persuade Maba Jaxu to abandon battle, as he could hear the junjung of Siin approaching, and the King of Sine (Kumba Ndoofeen fa Maak Juuf) was bound to be among them.
Posted on July 15, 2013 Slideshow

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