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Evidence for Wari

1 pieces of evidence found.

Id DLP.Evidence.2150
Type Ethnography
Location Ghana
Date 1914-01-01 - 1927-12-31
Rules 2x6 board with two stores. Four counters in each hole. Players alternate turns sowing from one of the holes on their side of the board in an anticlockwise direction. When a counter lands in one of the opponent's holes, making it contain six counters, those counters are captured. The player who captures the most counters wins.
Content Rules from A.W. Cardinall, who lived in Ghana from 1914: "But the people play a far more serious game than any of those outlined in the preceding pages. This is the game of "Wari." It seems that its extent is general throughout West Africa, and I believe the name "Wari" is almost equally widespread. However, the Ashanti claims wari as his own, and explains that wari is an Ashanti word, meaning "far," and is derived from the fact that the tokens with which it is played have "far" to go before the game is finished...Wari can be played on mother earth. It is generally played on a specially constructed board. This takes the form of a small table about three feet long and eight inches wide. The sides are each provided with six cups or hollowed-out squares, and at either end of the board is a larger receptacle. These last two do not enter into the actual play; they are merely to hold the counters or tokens captured. There are only two players and each has one of these receptacles for his use. The two sides are allotted one to each player, who owns that nearest to him. In each cup there are placed four counters. These are usually stones, cowries or seeds. There are thus forty-eight counters in all, twenty-four on each side, at the beginning of play. The play, being purely one of mathematical calculation, lends itself to many variations; but the commonest is as follows. A player may move the contents of any one of the receptacles on his own side, which is the one nearest to him. He thus has six squares each containing four counters. He must take all the counters in one square, and then drop one counter into each successive square to his right, following across into the squares of his opponent if necessary. His opponent does likewise, and as soon as six counters-no more, no less- are in one of his adversary's squares-the total of six being reached by his dropping one counter therein-he lifts those six from that square and puts them into his "prison" receptacle. If he makes six in his own squares, he cannot lift those." Cardinall 1927: 253-254.
Confidence 100
Ages All
Genders Male
Source Cardinall, A. 1927. In Ashanti and Beyond. ondon: Seeley, Service and Co. Limited.

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