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James Callow Folklore Archive

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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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In New Guinea, it is customary to take young boys away from
their parents for a couple of days to be initiated into
manhood. Ashes are used to cover the young boy's face and body
and a fire dance and prayer are conducted. The ashes
represent the death of the young boy. The young men are now
returned back to their parents.

Submitter comment: Robert spoke of this custom when he got back from Africa.
His gestures were mostly hands describing the way the
natives were conducting the ceremony.

Where learned: Africa

Keyword(s): Trial, Growing-up.

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Initiation rite Hazing

Date learned: 00-00-1949

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WITCH TEST

THE PERSON SUSPECTED OF BEING A WITCH IS TIED AND THROWN
INTO THE WATER. IF SHE ESCAPES, SHE IS A WITCH AND MUST BE
BURNED. IF SHE DROWNS THIS MEANS SHE WAS NOT A WITCH.

Data entry tech comment:

Updated by TRD

Where learned: OHIO ; FREMONT

Keyword(s): Burn ; Drown ; Proof ; TEST ; Trial ; Witch ; Witchcraft

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Witch Shaman

Date learned: NOT GIVEN

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