Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review. Volume 22, 1911.djvu/172

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144 '^^^ Popular Ritual of

of praying and is known for his honesty and has never committed murder. It is a common, although not universal, rule that a homicide must not sacrifice with his own hands," and in some tribes, mostly of Berber extraction,^^ there is a similar prohibition with reference to a person who has killed a dog, such persons being looked upon as unclean.

There is also a consecration of the knives with which the animals are going to be killed. Among the Arabs of the UMd Bu-'Aziz each head of a household takes his knife with him to the msdlla on the morning of the feast, and there all the knives are put together on the ground before the service commences. Should anybody arrive after the hdtba has been read, he must rub his knife against a stone in the wall of the sanctuary at which the people are assembled, this being considered to have the same effect as if it had been read over. In the Hiaina, again, a person who is late rubs his knife against one of the knives which have been placed in front of the fki. Among the Ait Sddden all the knives are thrust into the cairn which marks the msdlla ; among the Ait Nder they are dipped into the blood of the sheep which has been killed by the/^/, or into the blood of any other sheep which has been killed with a knife thus consecrated ; and among the Ait Yusi every man who is chosen by \h&fki to slaughter the sacrificial animals of his village must do so with a knife which has been dipped into the blood of the sheep sacrificed by the fki at the msdlla.

In towns the fkt who reads the Ijotba {l-ljteb), and who may be the kadi, or judge, of the town, kills the first sheep at the msdlla, and, if the Sultan resides in the town, he also,

^^I have found this rule prevalent among the Arabs of the Ulad Bu-'Aziz, Beni Ahsen, and Hiaina, among the Sluh of Aglu, GUwi, and Demnat, and among the Braber of the Ait Nder and Ait Yusi, but not among the Braber of the Ait Sadden and Ait Warain, the Rifians of the Ait Waryagal, and the Jbila of Andjra.

^-The Sluh of Aglu and Glawi, the Braber of the Ait Yusi and Ait Nder, and the Arabs of the Hiaina.