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Bao Ki Arabu (Zanzibar 2) (Bao, Bao Kiarabu)DLP Game   

Period Modern

Region Eastern Africa

Category Board, Sow, Four rows


Bao Ki Arabu is one of two mancala-style games by the same name is played by people in Zanzibar, where it is said to have been the original version that came to the island from Arabia. Indeed, it is quite similar to Hawalis, which has been documented in Oman.


4x8 board. Play begins with two counters in each hole. Sowing occurs in an anti-clockwise direction. When the last counter falls into an occupied hole, the counters in it are picked up and sowing continues. Sowing ends when the last counter falls into an empty hole. When this hole is in the inner row, the counters in the opponent's inner row opposite it are captured; if there are also counters in the opponent's outer row opposite, these are also captured, but not if the inner row is empty. Play continues until one player has lost all of their counters.

Ingrams 1931: 256-257.



Ludeme Description

Bao Ki Arabu (Zanzibar 2).lud


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Ingrams, W. H. 1931. Zanzibar: Its History and People. London: H. F. & G. Witherby.

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