The Family of bladed weapons known as The Mambele, are indicative to South Africa and go back many thousands of years. The most common, being The Hunga Munga. Part knife, sword and axe – these hand-held weapons evolved into a standard defense component for many African Warriors. The wooden handle (roughly 1.5 to 2-feet long), featured a series of curved (often radically) blades and cutting areas. Style and design type was often dictated by the particular Tribe.
Some Hunga Munga’s were “shaped” to resemble a Bird or Bull Head. In addition to warfare, The Mambele was used for ceremonial purposes. As a multi-purpose weapon, The Hunga Munga served as a sword-knife or axe. In the hands of a skilled user, it could cause horrific injuries – most often fatal. Some designs (no doubt through trade), made their way into Northern Africa and The Nile Basin. Some Tribes still retain The Mambele design in their traditional Tribal weapons inventory.