Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review. Volume 22, 1911.djvu/289

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page needs to be proofread.

Reviews. 253

Takaungu and Malindi). It appears (p. i.) that " a few isolated colonies of the tribe are found on Kilimanjaro." The inhabitants of this mountain, according to the Rev. J. Raum ( Versuch einer Grammatik der Dschaggasprache, pp. 2-3) belong to several differ- ent stocks and immigrated from the north and east at various periods, — the latest settlement being probably about two centuries ago.

Pp. 1-117, with some additional notes in the Appendix, are devoted to the A-Kamba ; the rest of the book consists, in the author's own words, of " the amplification of jottings made upon the occasion of journeyings among the various tribes touched upon." These refer to the Masai, the Akikuyu, the little known Mogogodo and Mweru tribes, and the Sambur, Laikipiak, and some others, and, though fragmentary, are very interesting. The account of the Kifhathi gxvtn under the heading of "Kikuyu Magic," (p. 139), should be compared with that given by Mr. Scoresby Routledge {With a Prehistoric People, pp. 273 et seq.), who, however, had never seen it, and calls it a " mysterious something." Mr. Hobley figures it as a section of earthenware pipe, sloped off at the ends and with four holes in its circumference. Its magic is so potent that "it must never be taken into a house, or the result would be disastrous to the inmates ; it must never be touched by human hands, but is lifted on a stick and deposited in a pocket made of dry banana-leaves. The parcel is then tied up and it can be safely carried from place to place." Mr Hobley had the good fortune to be present at a "trial by the Kithathi," described on pp. 140-41. Mr. H. R. Tate refers to this object (which he calls Githathi) in his paper " Native Law of the Southern Gikuyu," published in \he Journal of the Africari Society, April, 1910.

It is impossible within these limits to discuss all the points of interest suggested by this book, with which we have no fault to find beyond a certain lack of revision and arrangement, — cognate matter being sometimes scattered through two or three different chapters, and one or two statements being allowed to stand in a form which a little correction would have made clearer; e.g. on p. 2, "The tribe can be conveniently divided into three sections," — \j\i&Cifour are enumerated. But it would be hypercritical to insist on small blemishes like this.