Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review. Volume 26, 1915.djvu/77

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Some Notes on East Africa7t Folklore. 67

for you have no money to pay so that you might escape from having your flesh cut.'

"The husband answered, 'God be praised, for your father sent a very clever fellow who can turn round the truth so as to make it a lie, and a lie so as to make it the truth. There came a very handsome person, whose face was very much like yours, only he was a man and you are a woman — still he was very much like you. He came and made inquiries and was told of the case, and spoke well. . . .' (Here follow the proceedings in court, in almost the same words as before.) ' The owner of the money let me go, saying, " As long as I live I will never again press you for that debt." And I for my part took my ring and my sash and my belt, and gave them to Akilimali by way of thanks.' His wife said, ' But do you know that man for certain . ' 'No,' he said, ' I do not know him,' His wife said to him, ' Well, I am the person ! ' She took off the cloth from her head and gave him the ring, the sash and the belt. The husband believed her, and praised God for the beautiful wife He had given him. And then she said to him, 'As long as you live, never do so again.' (The story) ends here." [Imekonia hapa.)

What I had to sa}^ in my former paper with regard to the predominance of the Hare in Bantu folk-tales is only reinforced by the material collected during the last two years. The Pokomo and Giryama, as well as the other Wanyika, seem to be familiar with all the well-known incidents which appear in Uncle Renins. Perhaps the best known is that of the animals digging the well.^

I owe to the kindness of Mr. A. C. Hollis the MS. of a Rabai " Ngano ya Katsungnla na Fisi," in which the Hare and Hyaena make an agreement to sell their mothers to the Swahili (Adzomba) in time of famine — not, as in most other versions of this episode (including that related to me

  • See Folk-Lore, December, 1909, pp. 442 et seq. It is curious that this

story is not represented in Uncle Kenms.