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Alvares, Manuel, 1526-1583, et al. / Ethiopia Minor and a geographical account of the Province of Sierra Leone : (c. 1615)
(1990)

Chapter 7: Aptitudes of these heathen, and their superstitious rites and ceremonies,   pp. 1-14


Page 14

14.
At the wakes of the heathen, the main business is feeding, and without
wine there are no tears. On these occasions a great deal is eaten, but
the flesh only of birds, goats and hens, except that the flesh of dogs
is always also included, a delicacy much esteemed by these savages.
Lastly, each guest contributes according to his means. IAfter the burial
they place upon the grave some hens or only their blood and heads, they
pour over it some palm wine, and they stand on it a pan of rice, which
is much appreciated by both the domestic stock and wild animals. When
(the relatives) come the following day to see if the dead person has
fed and find the pan empty they leave overjoyed, for they believe that
he has eaten the food. But if they find anything left, they sadly
return home, saying that-there must be some evil or hatred around, since
he has chosen not to eat their food. The ceremony continues for several
days and whether the outcome is good or bad they then cease to provide
the food. Only the animals lose by the discontinuance of this abominable
provision.


 


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