Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review. Volume 22, 1911.djvu/183

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The Great Feast in Mo7'occo. 155

none of the many Arab and Berber scribes whom I have asked about it has been able to tell anything beyond the general statement that it is done much in the same way as is the fortune-reading in the blood.^^ But I presume that it must be much more complicated, as there are only special persons, called ketfafa, (sing, ketfaf, from kfef, "shoulder"), who are versed in it. It should be added that fortune is also read in the right shoulder-blades of other sheep than such as are killed at the Great Feast ; indeed, among the Ait Sadden, this kind of divination is only practised on occasions when a single sheep is slaughtered and not at the feast, when the shoulder-blades of different animals might lead to contradictory prognostications. They say that the shoulder-blade of the sacrificial sheep only tells lies.

The process of the liver which is in Arabic called rbtb {processus caudatus T) is another part of the sacrificed animal from which prognostications are made. In the Hidina and among the Ait Nder it is supposed to tell the fortune of the owner of the animal ; whilst, in the latter tribe, the fortune of the whole village is read in the rest of the liver.

In the Hiaina and among the Ait Warain and Ait Sddden the condition of the heart of the sacrificed animal is said to give an indication as to the heart of the person who slaughtered it. If it is dark and full of blood, the latter has a black heart ; if it is light and bloodless, he is a good man. One of my informants assured me that none of the sheep which he had killed had had any blood at all in its heart.

The difference between divination and magic causation is not fundamental ; an omen is, at least in many cases,

^^ M. Doutte, who mentions the prevalence of this practice in the Rahamna {op. cit., pp. 369 et seq.), describes it as follows : — " On desosse I'epaule droite et on en retire I'omoplate : si elle est lisse, I'annee sera bonne ; si, au contraire, il y a une ligne blanche, c'est le signe du ' kfen,' de mauvais augure."