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Evidence in Ba-ila

2 pieces of evidence found.

Id DLP.Evidence.733
Type Ethnography
Game Chisolo
Date 1920-01-01 - 1920-12-31
Content "(a) Chisolo— Foremost among these games is one that in different forms is found over a large part of Africa. It is what the Bathonga call tshuba; the Banyanja mchombwa, or msuo; and the Ba-ila chisolo. This is not a children's game, though we have seen lads engaged in it with adults as their opponents, evidently a case of teaching the young idea how to shoot. This popular game is played by two men sitting on opposite sides of a "board," consisting of a series of shallow holes in the ground. The number of these varies; we have watched games with as many as twenty holes on each side, but a more common number is fourteen. In any case they are arranged in four parallel lines, two to each player. Small stones, called lubwe, are used as "men": and of them each player has an equal number. The motive of the game is, by moving these stones in certain directions fixed by rule. to get them into positions relative to your opponent's and so sweep them off the board. The skill lies in selecting your move so as to bring your men into the required position. There are several varieties of the game: the following is a typical example of the kind named "natatu" ("the one of three"), so called because most holes contain three stones to start with. Each player has 33 stones, which he proceeds to place in the holes nearest to him—this is called "planting" (kushanga)— three in each hole, except the last four on his right hand in the second row which have 2, 1, 0, 0. They are now ready to start. They may move only in one direction: in the line nearest the player from right to left, in the farther row from left to right (This applies to the first move: in the second move the player may, if he chooses, reverse the direction, but if he does he must keep to it through the rest of the game.)...The opening move is called kubingula, subsequent moves kuteka ("to draw water"). The player selects the hole to move from; takes out the stones and drops them one by one in the following holes. The secret is to plan a move so as to leave the last of these stones in an otherwise empty hole, immediately opposite the opponent's occupied hole. If he succeeds in this, he takes all directly opposite that hole: this is to "eat" (kudya); and he has also the right to remove all the stones in any other hole of his opponent: this is kusuwa ("to snacth")... Another form of move is called kusuntula ("to lift up"). You drop the men in the holes as before, but having come to the end of those you hold you take out all the stones from the last hole you come to and drop them one by one in succeeding holes: you can continue this till your last stone drops into an empty hole. At times one sees a player going round the board, twice or even three times, dropping men in successive holes and taking them out. The do it so rapidly that it is difficult to see what they are doing... The game is frequently lengthened by one or both players "passing in foreigners," as they say, kuisha Balumbu. When one is getting beaten he has this privilege of adding six or seven fresh stones to his depleted holes and continuing the game. His opponent may elect to do the same. But unless he does, the other may not enjoy the privilege in two successive games." Smith and Dale 1920: 232-237.
Confidence 100
Source Smith, E and A. Dale. 1920. The Ila-speaking Peoples of Northern Rhodesia. London: Macmillan.

Id DLP.Evidence.734
Type Ethnography
Game Namudilakunze
Date 1920-01-01 - 1920-12-31
Content "Another variety is names namudilakunze ("eating on the outside"); and is also played with one stone in each hole, but with the hole on the player's extreme left, on the outer row, empty. As the name implies, instead of eating stone on the inner row only those on the outer row can be eaten. This is the "eating" position." Smith and Dale 1920: 237.
Confidence 100
Source Smith, E and A. Dale. 1920. The Ila-speaking Peoples of Northern Rhodesia. London: Macmillan.

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