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Dressing a topknot - Indigenous game

Ms. G Mkhize pointed out that the betrothed girl is referred to as maiden engaged to be married. To dress a topknot referred to plaiting hair up and tight so that they are not disintegrated. This dressing could either be in the form of a circle of elongated to the back.

The person consulted

The researcher spoke to Ms. G Mkhize about the manner in which this game was played.

Who plays this game?

This game is played by girls between the ages of 4 – 10.

What is used to play this game

No equipment is needed to play this game.

When is this game played?

This game is played during the day if it is not raining throughout the year.

Where is the game played?

This game is played in an open cleared spot.

How is this game played?

One girl would lead and run ahead. The rest of the girls would follow in a straight line. The followers repeat and do as the leader does. They chant the following:

Umholi: Wayiyenga, wayiyenga wayikhehl’ inkehli
Abalandeli: Wayiyenga, wayiyenga wayikhehl’ inkehli
Umholi: Sithi zonke mazigijime
Abalandeli: Sithi zonke mazigijime
Umholi: Sithi zonke mazime
Abalandeli: Sithi zonke mazime
Umholi: Zonke mazihlale
Abalandeli: Zonke mazihlale
Umholi: Zonke mazivuke
Abalandeli: Zonke mazivuke
Umholi: Zonke mazisukume
Abalandeli: Zonke mazisukume
Umholi: Zonke mazisine
Abalandeli: Zonke mazisine

The leader chants as she runs ahead, with the rest of the girls repeating all her words and copying all her actions.

Custom associated with this game.

This game has no customary origins. However, it is an African tradition to have a leader and to follow the leader as the children do in this game.


From a Masters dissertation by Victoria Mkhize for the School of IsiZulu, University of KwaZulu-Natal. Supervised by Professors P.J. Zungu and V. Prabhakaran.