The Tribal Eye is a seven-part BBC documentary series
on the subject of tribal art
, written and presented by David Attenborough
. It was first transmitted in 1975.
4. "Kingdom of Bronze"
On the ancient African kingdom of Dahomey. The bronze artifacts from the Benin Kingdom in modern day Nigeria.
History: Vice-consul Phillips of UK came to Benin in 1897 to punish the King of Benin for not holding his part of the deal in a trading agreement. But at the time a ritual ceremony was being held to renew the strength of the King, so no visitors were allowed. After several warnings from both the King's and the British messengers, vice-consul Phillips still decided to go on with his journey. The result was an ambush of one of the King's chiefs. As the news of the massacre in Benin reached England, a punitive expedition was mounted. 1,500 marines marched onto Benin. After 4 days of sporadic fighting they took Benin City. Here they found the Bronze sculptures.