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Morabaraba (Marabaraba, Mmili, Mmele)





Southern Africa


Board, Space, Line.


Morabaraba is a game of alignment played in Southern Africa. It is similar to Twelve Mane's Morris, but its origins are unclear. It is typically played by men and boys, though sometimes played with girls in the home.


Three concentric squares, with lines connecting the midpoints of the squares with the center of the square and four lines connecting the corners of the outer two squares. Twelve pieces per player. In the first phase, players take turns placing pieces on an empty spot on the board. If they place three pieces so they are in a line, forming a "meul." they remove one of the opponent's pieces that is not in a "meul." Once all the pieces are placed, the second phase begins, in which players take turns moving one piece to an adjacent empty spot. When a "meul" is formed, the player removes one fo the opponent's pieces that is not in a "meul." When one player is reduced to three pieces, they may move their pieces to any empty spot on the board. The player who reduces their opponent to two pieces wins.

Coertze 2002: 57-58.

Ludeme Description



Coertze 2002.

Evidence Map

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Coertze, R. 2002. 'Die bordspel Morabaraba—aard, verspreiding en herkoms.' Anthropology South Africa 25 (3/4): 55-70.



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