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date: 05 June 2020


  • Peter Cooke


Ganda name for the vessel rattle ubiquitous in Uganda. It is made from a gourd (calabash), the narrow neck of which serves as a handle, the spherical part as a container for seeds or stones. They are usually used in pairs (pl. ensaasi) in many dance music ensembles and play an important part in spirit rituals. In northern Uganda they are often given incised or burned decoration. In Nkore a common term for this is oburengo. Variants of the word (isaasi, etc.) occur as well as for other types of rattle, for example the flattened tin box rattle commonly used in Busoga and the metal rattle (esaasi) of Nkole, which is made from a tin can approximately 8 cm long and 6 cm in diameter, hammered into an hourglass shape and perforated all over by a nail, with loose pebbles inside.

M. Trowell and K.P. Wachsmann...

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