Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review. Volume 16, 1905.djvu/443

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Bavili Notes. 385

Brute force is no doubt a great power for a European power to wield over such a race as the Bantu, and will make them do much ; but is it not curious that civilized countries in the twentieth century should resort to so barbarous a form of governing a people supposed to be so much their moral inferiors ? And by taking away a fetish of this kind they do not prevent the native from making another one to take its place. It merely makes the native more cautious, and forces him to guard his fetish in some secret place outside the small sphere of influence of the official.

This class of Nkici Mbowu, the wooden figures into which nails are driven, are legion, and their multiplication comes, (i) from the desire of each district to have its own Nkici, and (2) from the importation from foreign districts of those who gained fame for their slaying powers or as deterrents. Thus in Loango we hear of Mangarka,^ Mbiali Mundunbi, Ekawso,'^ Selo Xingululu, Mani ma- vungu, Fulula, Xiela, Mbwaka,^ all of whom are known to be imported from Kakongo. It has therefore been hard work to distinguish those which were originally conse- crated to the use solely of this district. For some time I had sixteen on my list ; but I find that Maquarsia and Ngoio Kondi Mamba are not Zinkici Mbozvii, so that I am left with the following fourteen ; whose names I give you under all reserve, as, after all, I may not have got at the true and original ones.

1. Mambili, a figure of a man with nails driven into it, now a wreck at Ximoko (see p. 391).

2. Mamboni Pwati, figure of a man.

3. Mambika, a figure of a man.

' Mangaika, see Manchester Museum. [Cf. Man, 1905, No. 59, pp. 102, 103.] Mani mavungu, see Afr. Soc. Journal (July 1903).

^Ekawso, see Seven Years among the Fjort, and specimens in Exeter Museum [presented by Mr. Dennett. Plate XXIX. See note, p. 406.]

•^Mbwaka, see Bentley, Pioneering in the Congo, p. 260.

2 K