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Tomatoes game

Ms. N Mlilo of eMachunwini says this game is named after a tomato plant.

The person consulted

Ms. M Mlilo of eMachunwini, Pietermaritzburg explained about this game.

Who play this game?

This game is played by girls between the ages of 4 to 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 throughout the year.

Where is this game played?

This game is played in an open cleared spot.

How is this game played?

Children form two lines which face each other. Then they chant:
Tamatiso so sososo
Tamatiso so sososo
Eliza khe khe ekhekhekhe
Eliza khe khe ekhekhekhe

As they chant, they move their legs and proudly show off to the other one on the opposite line. In this way as they play, they all proudly show off to their partners creating a spectacle display.

Custom associated with this game

This game has no cultural background but to show off proudly was a norm among Zulu maidens. With this game young girls were preparing themselves for this stage in their lives. Most ceremonies in KwaZulu Natal were associated with showing-off proudly even during singing. This game therefore helped children to be very confident.


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.