The recade is the ceremonial staff of the Fon people of west Africa. Some variants include an ornamental metal axe blade meant to symbolize the speech and wisdom of the King of Dahomey. The blade is by no means intended as a true weapon, as it is not reinforced for any sort of combat use; like many metal implements in pre-colonial Africa, it is a symbol of wealth and prosperity rather than a weapon of war.

According to the oral history of the Kingdom of Dahomey, the recade is the ceremonial descendant of a kind of club in the shape of a hoe handle, possibly introduced by the Aja people (originally of Togo) when they invaded Benin in the 12th-13th centuries.


French récade < Portuguese recado "embassy"



  • 1 2 "axe" variety - brass, Fon - Benin
  • 1 "hoe" variety - iron, Fon - Benin
  • 1 "zoomorphic" variety - brass, copper, and iron, Fon - Benin
  • 1 2 "staff" variety - brass, Fon - Benin