Nchuwa (Atonga)

Meredith G. Sanderson, Medical Officer, Nyasaland

Journal of the Royal Anthropological Insitute
London, 43, 1913, pages 726-736

[Note:The definitions are the same as for the game of Bau.]

[Page 734] In this game the "board" is also made by scooping out the requisite number of holes in the ground, but it differs from Nchombwa in the numbers of holes. These are in four rows, as in the other games, but there are six, nine, twelve, or fifteen holes in each row. The number of seeds (machi) also varies with the number of holes (godi) (two for each), 48, 72, 96, or 120 being required.

The Bau board may be used by dispensing with two end holes of each row. The 15-hole game is, however, much the most interesting.

The Gambit - Two men are put in each hole.

The first player takes up the two in the right-hand end hole of the front row, and puts one in the second hole and one in the third. He then takes up the two in the next hole and puts one in each of the next two holes, and so on till there are twice the number of holes having three in them as there are empty. The position being as drawn:

Figure 9

The opponent does the same.

The first player then takes two men from any hole in the front row, and puts them in any empty hole in the back row. He then takes from his opponent the contents of the two holes opposite to that from which he moved the two men, and also the contents of any one other hole (back or front rows), and removes all of them from the board.

His opponent does the same. This constitutes the gambit. The game then proceeds exactly as in the Angoni (Nsolo or Nchombwa) game. (See p. 733.)

Last update January 11, 2010