The reason why the new Oba of Benin, Oba Ewuare ll N’Ogidigan, and his wives covered their mouths during his coronation recently has been uncovered.
According to preliminarily investigations by a bonafide indigene of Benin Kingdom of Edo State, south-south part of Nigeria, it was obviously a cultural act but what was the significance?
Here it is below:
(1) The Oba usually covers his mouth because when he talks he is the supreme authority and whatever he says is final.
(2) People talk on his behalf most of the time and whatever they proclaim becomes the law with immediate effect.
(3) His wives covered their mouths as a sign of submission.
“A friend of mine who is a painter said he did a painting of the old Oba and it was rejected because it depicted him smiling. According to tradition, people are not supposed to see the Oba’s teeth so he doesn’t smile” the unnamed investigator concluded.
Oba Ewuare ll N’Ogidigan ascended the revered throne of his ancestors to become the 39th Oba of Benin, succeeding his late father, Omo n’Oba n’Edo Uku Akpolopkolo, Oba Erediauwa.
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