Divination among the Malagasy.
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Columns with same Figures. Native Word for Combination. Meaning.
1. Fàhasìvy and Màsina = Tsi-ròngatra = does not move or agitate.
2. Fàhasìvy„ and„ Nìa = Màti-ròa = two deaths; that is, two will die, but two locusts may be thrown away as a fàditra or piaculum.
3. Fàhatèlo and„ Harèna = Vahòaka = a crowd of people.
4. Tràno and„ Mpànontàny = Tsìndrilàsy = enemy approaching.
5. Tràno„ and„ Làlana = Sàmpona = hindrances expected.
6. Andro and„ Asòrotàny = Làhi-àntitra = old man; that is, the sick will recover, and reach old age.
7. Fàhasìvy and„ Asòrotàny = Ravòakòny = a mouthful thrown out (?).
8. Vòhitra and„ Fàhatèlo = Fotòan-tsi-mihàtra = the fixed time will not be kept.
9. Làlana and„ Nìa = Fèhi-tsi-ròso = the troops will not advance.
The following five possibilities refer to somewhat different cases, thus:
13. If Sàka ((symbol characters)) occurs in Tràno, and Vontsìra ((symbol characters)) in Talé, or Alaimòra ((symbol characters)) in Tràno, and Adibijàdy ((symbol characters)) in Talé, the case will follow the analogy of the one preceding it; e.g., if my child, who was formerly ill, was cured, this one will be cured; if it died, this one will die too.
It is evident that many of these "meanings" can be construed into answers to questions, although the general tendency of many of them seems to be rather to point out the fàditra to be used against the evil. But it might happen that the figures were all unlike one another, at any rate that those which were like the one in the column representing the question were so incongruous with it that even the most inventive imagination and the greatest acuteness, sharpened by long practice, would prove unequal