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Three antique aloalo

The aloalo is a funerary pole sculpture that, along with the skulls of slaughtered zebu, is placed on the tombs of important people in the south-western region of Madagascar. These carved posts often tell the story of the person's life and generally take the form of a series of geometric or symbolic shapes topped by sculpted figures or objects evocative of the deceased's life. They are chiefly associated with the Mahafaly people,[1] although they are also found on the tombs of some Antandroy and particularly the Sakalava, whose carved figures are reputed for their often erotic imagery.[2]


  1. ^ Stevens, R. (1999). Major World Nations: Madagascar. London: Chelsea House Publications.
  2. ^ Turner, J. (Ed.). (1996). "Madagascar," in The Dictionary of Art, Volume 20. London: Macmillan Publishers Limited.