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No. 7/2
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No. 7
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Publication: 1910. Alldridge, Thomas J. A Transformed Colony: Sierra Leone as it Was, and as it Is. Its Progress, Peoples, Native Customs and Undeveloped Wealth..

Original language: English

Caption: The Binni Poro Devil. His body is enclosed in a cumbrous dress of long fibre; the headgear is of sheepskin with side flaps; the face is entirely concealed, but there are two small holes cut in a large skin flap for the eyes to see through; his breast and back are hung with little wooden tablets covered with Arabic writing. [...]

Text: "The Binni does not like standing about, he prefers to kneel or recline. He, however, covers a great deal of ground on his patrol, but in a spasmodic way. When he intends to move on he makes many feigned attempts, staggering as if intoxicated, and then gives a short sudden plunge forward, when he apparently becomes exhausted and sinks to the ground. The Wujangas rush up and fan him with a fibre-fringed wicker tray, upon which he recovers and goes on with his performance. When he and his procession have been through the town the Binni is escorted back to the Poro bush, where the law is given orally to the Poro boys, and the Wujangas are then dispatched with the actual words of the law throughout the Paramount Chief's jurisdiction, the Binni devil remaining in the Poro bush, but coming out to dance at intervals, until the Wujangas have returned and the Law has been given to the country. Thus with fantastic ceremony the law is given..." (p. 197)

Illustrator: Mr. G.H. Garrett, (all?) photographs taken from negatives of Mr. G.H. Garrett and his expedition to chief Almami Samodu (as per Alldridge's introduction. see book notes)
Illustration technique: b/w field photograph

Publication page: facing 196

Publication plate/figure: plate

Related images: To find other images of Poro gbini masqueraders, search: gbini Same image in #s 7/2 & 2399/2.

Keywords:
• Sierra Leone (Country, region, place)
• fiber (Materials and techniques)
• wood (Materials and techniques)
• leather (Materials and techniques)
• sheepskin (Materials and techniques)
• costume (Notable features)
• initiation (Notable features)
• masquerader (Notable features)
• Poro society (Notable features)
• mask (Object name, type)
• gbini (Object name, type)
• Mende (Style, culture group)