CABINDAS
 

HISTORY, BELIEFS, CUSTOM AND HABITS

 

An attentive reader, honest and fair, not moved by prejudice, will easily realise, even if he reads foreign authors (e.g. Battel, Proyart, Barbot, Merrolla, Prevost, etc.) that the coast of the Ancient Kingdoms of Loango and Ngoio was discovered by the Portuguese in the 15th century.

After having discovered the mouth of river Zaire (in 1482), they began penetrating the land upstream, and contacting the Kings, the Lords of the land and the common people of those regions.

In the present study our interest was attracted by the Kingdoms of Loango and specially Kakongo and Ngoyo.

The Country of Cabinda, which holds within its boundaries the sites of the Ancient Kingdoms of Loango, Kakongo and Ngoyo.

The habits of the principal clans, Bakongo, Bauoio, Basundi, Balinge, Bavili, Bakoki, but very specially those of the Bakongo and Bauoio have an unequaled quality of greatness and beauty of concept.

This work, Cabindas - Histories Beliefs, Custom and Habits tries to describe them though 'It is impossible to do it completely and its author lived among those people for the greater part of 22 years.

His previous work, "Sabedoria Cabinda" (Cabinda Wisdom) issued by the Junta de lnvestigacoes do Ultramar in 1968 shows a facet of the spiritual richness of these people: symbolism, a kind of ideo graphic script. In the present work the history of those people in close touch with the Portuguese is given as much as the history of clans descended from the ancient Kingdom of Kongo. In particular the book gives the description of their habits, their beliefs, their works and activities and even the use of medicinal plant.; (chapter IX).

It would be marvelous if this work could be completed and perfected. The author recognises his limitations but at the same time he hopes that he has done his best to make known those wonderful people of Cabinda and especially to make them properly understood.

We give now some examples of the most beautiful principles of social and family morals:

MARRIAGE

You can't always get it with whoever, just as the leze (a bird) doesn't always catch the fish it sees in the lake.
It demands work from both partners. It is like a carriage which has to be carried evenly balanced by its two porters.
The man that gets married without having thought about it-also the woman that behaves the same way -is like a man who strikes his leg against a log.

Marriage is not like putting a handle in an axe -it can't be forced...
A good marriage demands three things, at least (as one needs three termites' nests to balance a pan on them properly): house; clothes and food, and matrimonial relations to produce children.
It leads to another life, like the boa, which never returns to its former tracks.
Think it over once and again, that you don't carry a boa in the canoe of your life.

THE MAID

Her value dwells in her virginity and modest behaviour.
The untouched maid is worth fighting and working for.
A girl who has lost her maidenhead is like a fallen palm-free: anyone can jump over it,
A girl who doesn't marry is like firewood that one has abandoned.
After having lost her maidenhead she is like a torn peanut sack: every mouse can get into it...
If she behaves according to the laws she will suffer no insult and no shame.
She should get married so that she doesn't frisk like a monkey...
She is a sacred thing: she must be kept safe.
She can be very pretty, but if she is like a holly tree she is worth nothing at all.

THE WIFE

She shall have only one husband, as a BUKU (mushroom) has only one stem.
She shall be a housewife, she shall be diligent and judicious-and not like the Fondo (a bird) - which is always moving from one place to another.
Her protection is in her husband, as the gunpowder is in the powder-flask.
She is worthy only as long as she is bound to her husband, like bananas bound to their tree... when they aren't, they start getting rotten.
She shall not be a tramp, like a swallow...
She shall not go with one who can make her faithless but she shall do like the cockroach - it runs away from the hen, its enemy...
Though weak she may be, she has also her rights.
She ought to be faithful to her husband.
She must be like a parrot-it doesn't nest or nurse out of its habitat
She shall not agree do nest out of her husband's home.
She ought to be bound to her husband like a turtle to its shell.

THE HUSBAND

The husband ought to keep away from his neighbour's wife, who is something across his life.
He must know what is going on in his home as the "kianga" (the chimney-rail) in the fireplace knows the exit of the smoke.
He is the only one to command his wife, as the owner of an axe uses it in his plantation.
He must furnish his wife with what she needs to cook. She shouldn't stay stretching her legs by the fire...
He is a fool and is guilty if he permits anyone to take his wife away. He is like a careless master whose clog eats up his meals...
His wife alone can give him full satisfaction - not a prostitute...
He ought not to meddle with his neighbour's wife, as he who takes off the lid of another man's pan...

JUSTICE

Everyone has a right to it: it can't be shared as if one might give the tail of the fish to one and the head to another.
It has to be applied to all people: as the sawfish doesn't spare whoever faces it.
It is difficult to find it in everything and in everyone: sometimes the one who is hand sick is carried and a lame man has to walk.
Good justice listens to both sides: for this purpose we have two ears.
To each person what belongs to each person: the hen belongs to someone but the cricket it caught belongs to the hen alone.

EVIL

It is not justified without a cause: you don't beat a dog with no reason.
It always leaves its track behind: so does the snake, or the "safu", which marks the lips of those who eat it.
It is not always irreparable: it can be like a prostitute-she takes the rings away but not the fingers.
From two evil things chose the lesser: a wounded monkey doesn't climb a tree...
You shall not pay Good with Evil: you don't cut the roots of a tree which gives you shade.
There are people who don't do good but evil; they are like crickets: they don't repair the holes but make them wider...
 
 

WORK

You should always finish your work: he who makes a shirt sews on its buttons.
Everyone crops what he has sown (As a man sows, so shall he reap ... ) He has to sleep on the upper side of the unfolded mat...
Work is better than soft words: though pleasant it can be, the sound of the tantan is not worth a palm tree, which feeds man with "dendem" (palm-nut).
One has to be strong and eat to be able to work: without wind the sailing-boat can't move.
Everyone works on his own: no one twists a rope on his neighbour's knee...
Each thing in its turn: though he has four feet, a dog doesn't take four ways at the same time, but one, only.
He who works the most, he eats the most; so the bird that stirs the most gets the most food.
He who doesn't work should not eat; the hen that doesn't scratch gets no food and starves.
 
 

THE OLD AGE

It is sad when it is riot respected: it is like a manioc scraper that someone has thrown onto a dunghill.
He who went has nowhere to go: he is like a dry leaf which cannot be green again.
There are no infallible rights: the old man's beard doesn't prevent his failing to the ground.
Troubles in your old age very often result from imprudence in your youth and adulthood: if you don't sow as long as you can do so, what will you do when you are old?
Old people should always be given consideration and respect: they are, so to speak, a wisdom hat to inspire and to defend the young ones.
Because, generally speaking, if they have sense and experience, they resolve any quarrel to everyone's satisfaction.
 
 

LIFE

Sometimes life is hard at the beginning: just like it is hard to put a canoe on the sea in breaking waves.
All is transitory in life: it is like a lizard just walking on a manioc basket or a partridge on a termite hill.
Where there is life there is hope: you can take off a grasshopper's leg. It keeps its wings...
Everyone has a right to life: that's why hens jump on the dunghill as soon as the wild cat leaves it.
Life must be lived with dignity, method and quietness.
Everyone shall mind his own business as the tortoise keeps inside its shell.
As long as you are alive you are free and you command yourself: nobody uses the snail's  or the cauris's shell as long as they are inside.
When life is too long it also has inconveniences; it becomes like an old turtle: nobody can eat it...
Life is our best happiness: love for life makes the cockroach run away from the "selengo", the eating ants...
These people with such beautiful precepts and laws live in a really privileged country. Cabinda, town and district, is one of the richest and most beautiful tropical places.
There can be seen large palm-groves used for the oleaginous industry; very rich forests, which furnish sawmills, from which plywood, laminated and compressed wood products are obtained; coffee and cocoa plantations etc.
In the earth there is petrol, now extracted in millions of tons every year; deposits of phosphate, the largest in the world; rich minerals, etc,
Besides this there are the food products of the region, the inhabitants of which cannot starve... : wheat, banana, manioc, yam of all kinds, varied fruit, etc.
We are almost tempted to state that the Country of Cabinda, the lands of the Ancient Kingdoms of Kakongo and Ngoio, for its laws and moral principles, its institutions, for its beauty and richness of natural resources, is a small branch of EDEN.


CABINDAS

HISTORIA CRENÇAS USOS E COSTUMES

ÍNDICE GERAL

INTRODUÇÃO

CAPITULO I  - TERRAS AO NORTE DO ZAIRE - REINOS DE NGOIO, CACONGO E LOANGO

Os Tratados
1. - Chinfuma
2. - Chicamba
3. - Simulambuco
Depois dos Tratados
Cabinda, nomes e proveniências
Lândana
Os Homens dos Tratados

CAPITULO II - A MISSIONAÇÃO EM TERRAS DE LOANGO, KACONGO E NGOYO

CAPITULO III - O ENSINO NO PAÍS DE CABINDA

CAPITULO IV - OS HABITANTES DO PAÍS DE CABINDA

Os 9 Clãs descendentes do Rei do Congo
As «ZIMVILA»
O Maiombe e os Baiombe

CAPITULO V - MAKONGO OU KAPITA ?

As insígnias dos Kapitas
Makongos de Bumelambuto
Fidalgos e Titulares

CAPITULO VI - OS BASUNDI EM TERRAS DE KAKONGO

CAPITULO VII - A KIMPABA

CAPITULO VIII - RELIGIÃO E CRENÇA .

 A «Mitologia» dos Bauoio.
O Sistema religioso comum a todos os clãs.
 Nzambi - O Deus Supremo .
 Bakisi-Basi - Os espíritos da terra.
Adivinhação - (Kutésia, Kutésia manga) .
 O Homem invisível .
 Os Bandoki .
 Resumo da Religião e Crenças .
 O Ntoma-Nsí .
 Alguns Bakisi-Basi  .
 Nkisi-Mbingo e Nkobe-Mbíngo.
 Superstições.

CAPITULO IX - PLANTAS MEDICINAIS E O SEU USO E APLICAÇÃO.

CAPITULO X - NDUNGA (p1. ZINDUNGA).

 Os Zindunga do Kizu
 Os Zindunga do Ngoio
 Os Zindunga do Kinzázi
 Os Zindunga do Susu

CAPITULO XI - NASCIMENTOS

 A Cerimónia da «Apresentação» .
 A volta da parturiente .

CAPITULO XII - NOMES E APELIDOS .

 Os gémeos
 Alcunhas

CAPITULO XIII - FESTA DOS RAPAZES

CAPITULO XIV - NOIVADO ALAMBAMENTO

 É compra, venda ou oferta ?
 Várias partes do Alambamento

CAPITULO XV - CASA DAS TINTAS

 Nzo Kumbi
 Nzo Kualama
 Cânticos na festa da Nzo Kualama
 O Kusumuna Kina
 Há na Nzo Kualama uma iniciação efectiva da vida sexual?
 As esteiras na «Casa da Tinta»
 O que se espera de uma donzela

CAPITULO XVI - CASAMENTO

 O Tambuziana itata
 O levar da noiva para a casa do noivo
 Alguns conselhos
 O Kusumba mbembo
 Tem de seguir virgem para o casamento ?
 Os direitos do Nkama Mponde e do Ntútika Nsodo
 Alguns princípios aplicados ao:
 Casamento
 Marido
 Esposa
A Nzo-Mpilo
A Nzo-Buáli
A Infidelidade conjugal

CAPITULO XVII - DOENÇAS, MORTES, FUNERAIS

Fiabiziana
O secar ou defumar o cadáver
O Cortejo fúnebre
O Núíkína bakulu
O que pensam da velhice e da vida

CAPITULO XVIII - MPOLO ou NZIMBU

Uma festa de Mpolo (a da Júlio Jack)

CAPITULO XIX - FUNDA - NKANU

Princípios sobre a justiça e o mal

CAPITULO XX -TRABALHOS, OCUPAÇÕES, ARTES E OFÍCIOS

As ocupações de cada dia
A fabricação do óleo de palma
Várias espécies de refeições
 Tecelagem
 Oleiros
 Esteiras
 Mercados
 Divisão do tempo
 Leis e princípios sobre o trabalho

CAPITULO XXI  - PESCA E CAÇA

Sistemas de pesca
Sistemas de caça
Os cães

CAPÍTULO XXII - VESTUÁRIO, ADORNOS, PENTEADOS, TATUAGEM

 Como se vestem
 Adornos
 Penteados
 Tatuagem
 Os dentes

CAPÍTULO XXIII  - MANIFESTAÇÕES DE ARTE E DE VALORES ESPIRITUAIS

Simbologia
Dança e batuque
Estatuária e Pintura
Contos e alegorias

 APÊNDICE

Riquezas do solo e subsolo
Madeiras
Arvores de fruta, leguminosas, etc .
Comércio e indústria

LIVROS CONSULTADOS

PEQUENA EXPLICAÇÃO EM FRANCÊS

Explanation in english

ALGUNS TERMOS E EXPRESSÕES

ÍNDICE DAS FIGURAS
 


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