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

Part two: The Province of Sierra Leone, chapter 1: the name, situation and bounds of this province and the nature of the land,   pp. 1-18

Page 12

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is even more interesting!   They like honey very much, so they
remove it from the tree trunks that act as hives here. They II
approach the hole and blow into it, and out come the bees.    Then
they cover their faces with one hand and with the other take out
the honey combs, passing them to their companions close behind they j
These take them to a place where they eat the honey when the poachian
is over.  The older people say that, in the times when the natives     ;I,
lived in peace, daris were used to fetch water and firewood.    But
one had to be careful to lift the loads off their heads when they
reached the houses, because if this was not done, they would break
everything. Similarly they say that they used to grind food, but I~it
considered this far-fetched. So is what I heard about a dari from
the Serra which went to Rio do Nuno, where it worked as a ship's bo'rr
It kept watch on the boat.   Once, when the boat went aground, it
tried with all its might to push it out again; but as it could not
do this alone, when it saw a youth it caught hold of him, to make I
him help iv, which the youth did.   In return, the dari afterwards
looked after the youth's boat, to prevent this one running aground.
Anyone who has seen this animal will believe anything of it, even
the most incredible things i) When in former times they used to grit
in a mortar, there would be trouble if the human partner gave rice
from the mortar to children, for the dari would get angry and spank\
them. Being so versatile, this animal is the most dangerous to havit;
around and bring up. It is very sensitive. But as yet these I
animals have not lost their dirty habits.    Theywash the tip of their
nails in the flow from their noses and in the stream from their
lower parts.
(i)  There are heathen that claim to be descendants of this animal,
and when they see it they have grqat compassion : they never
harm it or strike it, because they consider it the soul of       I
their forefathers, and they think themselves of high parentage     |
They say they are of the animal's family, and all that believe
they are descended from it call themselves Amienu.
*~~~~~~~~~~~~ I I


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