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A pattern from the Bakuba Culture in Africa. It occurs here on a type of cloth refered to as "raffa pile cloth". (above, collection Hampton Institute, Hampton, Virginia) This pattern seems to be abstracted from the pattern of spots found on a leopard. Patterns occur in nature both to camouflage an animal for protection, or to confuse predators during a herd-chase, making it hard for the predator to distinguish visually between different individuals in the herd. Early examples of pattern making may have been engaged in by humans for the same reason. Patterned shield faces, for example, might confuse or frighten an adversary during battle.