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Evidence for Tsoro

1 pieces of evidence found.

Id DLP.Evidence.1882
Type Ethnography
Location Zimbabwe
Date 1964-01-01 - 1964-12-31
Rules 4x6-21 board; 8 is most common, 12, 15, and 18 are also popular. Two counters in each hole in the players' outer rows. Sowing occurs in an anti-clockwise direction, only in the two rows belonging to the player. When the final counter lands in an occupied hole, these are picked up and sowing continues. When the final counter lands in an empty hole in the inner row, any counters in the opposite hole in the opponent's inner row are captured. If there also are counters in the opposite hole in the opponent's outer row, these are also captured, but only if there was first a capture from the inner row hole. Players cannot sow from a hole with a single counter unless there are no holes with multiple counters. Single counters can only be sown into an empty hole. Play continues until one player has captured all of the opponent's counters, thus winning the game.
Content "Tsoro...the board for the game demands four parallel rows of holes (magomba) about three inches in diameter, hollowed in the ground. There can be any number of holes horizontally. Eight is probably the most common, but vriations between six and 21 are commonly to be met with. 12, 15, and 18 are quite usual. The men are once again small pebbles ()matombo). The way in which they are set out in the variation which I shall take as basic is as follows: (a) The game starts when A picks up two stones from any of his holes. The basic principle is that after picking up he drops one stone into each successive hole, and if his last stone drops into a hole which is already occupied, he picks up all the stones in that hole and carries on until his last stone drops into a vacant hole. He moves in an anti-clockwise direction only around his own two horizontal rows, never into his opponent's. (b) If the last stone (falling into a vacant hole) finishes in a hole in the inner row and both holes vertically opposite him are occupied by his opponent's stones, he removes all those stones from the board. He can only take thus, however, if his opponent has a stone vertically opposite in the inner row. Thus if A is playing and his final stone drops into row II, hole 3, and B has stones in Row iii, hole 3, and Row iv, hole 3, B will lose all these stones. He cannot lose his stones from iv, 3, however, if iii, 3 is not occupied. (c) The object of the game is to take all one's opponent's stones. (d) Until all his holes are occupied by a single stones a player may only commence a move at a hole containing more than one stone. (e) When he reaches the stge wheere all his occupied holes have not more than one stone in them, he may move any of these single stones, provided that it has an empty hole in front of it to move into. At this final stage a stone may never be moved into an occupied hole." Matthews 1964: 64-65.
Confidence 100
Ages Adult
Genders Male
Source Matthews, J. 1964. "Notes on Some African Stone Games." NADA: The Southern Rhodesia Native Affairs Department Annual 9(1): 64-66.

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