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About the work

Walters Art Museum Object Description

This enameled brooch is made in the shape of a manacled, kneeling African in rich attire. The casualness of the insensitivity is breath taking today, but it was consistent with 17th-century views on the inevitability of hierarchy as a reflection of natural law; every creature and thing had its God-given place. Slavery was an accepted institution throughout the Muslim and Christian world.

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