Mangebetu

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The Mangebetu are a tribal group from the Repubic of Zaire who are the only known African group to have inner conch piercings. Paul King writes,

The Mangebetu were formerly regarded for their sophisticated court and developed arts. It is the women of the tribe that can still be seen wearing the beautiful long pieces of ivory in their conchae. The conch perforations often "hold monkey bones which are used to part their hair." Sometimes the bones were simply for decoration. In the past when skull shaping was more widely practiced, and hair styles were worn high to accentuate the skull's shape, the conch jewelry was used to support the hair. The woman's hair was sometimes extended using hair from the dead of an enemy tribe.
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