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alágbẹ̀dẹ Yoruba occupation

Iron making is the occupation of those referred to as alágbẹ̀dẹ, blacksmiths, or iron smelters.

 Smelting is carried out at a worksite called ẹbu, which is usually constructed not too far from where people live.

 Smelters go through the rigor of collecting iron ore called òkúrú, washing the ore, and burning trees for charcoal. 

The Yorùbá associate all iron implements with Ògún, the orisa of war, metal, and iron. In this sense, iron or iron tools are the universal symbols of Ògún, who is acknowledged in indigenous beliefs as the most indispensable.

 Many scholars have assigned dates to the discovery of iron-making technology and place a premium on the idea of deification popular among the West African people. 

Ògún is believed to have been the first to discover and work with iron and the first to have fashioned such tools

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