Volume 46 1937 > Memoirs > No. 13 String-figures from the Gilbert Islands, by H. C. and H. E. Maude, p 41-56
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Memoir No. 13
Supplement to the Journal of the Polynesian Society
STRING-FIGURES From the Gilbert Islands.

INSTALMENT No. 4 Pages 41—48

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3. With feet slightly apart, hook up with right index, from distal side, the string stretched between the toes, pull toward you and place over left thumb.

4. Insert right index, from distal side, into right toe-loop and grasp right string between thumb and index.

5. Pass right hand to left, distal to left string of right toe-loop and right string of left toe-loop. Pass right middle finger downward, to right of right string of right toe-loop and insert into left toe-loop and hook up right string of left toe-loop; release right thumb and index finger.

6. Pass right hand distal to left string of left toe-loop. Grasp string on middle finger between right thumb and index finger; pass right middle finger to right of this string, to the left of left string of left toe-loop, hook up this last string and release thumb and index finger.

7. Slide middle finger up string, then insert left little finger, from proximal side, into right middle-finger-loop so that left string of left toe-loop becomes ulnar little-finger-string.

8. Pass right hand distal to right toe-loop, then hook up, with right index finger, the left string of right toe-loop; slide finger up this string until tip of right index finger rests on left thumb, then transfer right index-loop to left thumb.

9. Repeat movements 4 to 8 inclusive about seven times, according to length of string used.

10. With right hand remove loop from the right toe and hold both strings of loop near its end. Also with right hand carefully remove loops from left thumb, hold these loops between left thumb and index finger and thread all but about two inches of former right toe-loop through them. Insert right little finger away from you into loop formed by this two inches of former toe-loop and insert right thumb away from you into the former toe-loop which has been already threaded through the former left thumb-loops.

11. Repeat with the other toe-loop, but this time, of course, the left thumb and little finger will be inserted toward you into their respective loops.

12. Insert thumbs, from proximal side, into the nearest loops depending from the double strings running between thumbs and little fingers.

13. Grasp the strings on the left thumb in mouth and release left thumb. Transfer left little-finger-loops to left thumb; right little-finger-loops to left little finger; right thumb-loops to right little finger and mouth-loops to right thumb.

14. Extend.

To unravel—Release right thumb and little finger and then pull out the left radial thumb strings and the left ulnar little finger strings.

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Fig. 38.
Illustration
23. RI NI KAOKAO

(Ribs).

(Obtained at Tarawa.)

    METHOD
  • 1. Opening A.
  • 2. Release thumbs and pass them, from distal side, through index loops, then proximal to little finger loops and return to position with ulnar little finger strings.
  • 3. Hold the radial thumb string between the teeth, pull it towards you and release thumbs.
  • 4. Insert left index, towards you, into mouth loop, pass it to right between your body and the right mouth string; pick up this string on back of index finger and return to left, so that what is now the left radial index string crosses the left mouth string close to the mouth.
  • 5. Pass right index finger between your body and the left mouth string, return to right with string on back of index. Release string from mouth and extend.
  • 6. Pass thumbs proximal to index loops and insert into little finger loops from proximal side; return with radial little finger strings.
  • 7. Insert thumbs, from proximal side, into distal index loops. Navaho thumb loops.
  • 8. Release indices from distal loops.
  • 9. Transfer thumb loops to indices.
  • 10. Repeat 6 and 7.
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  • 11. Insert middle fingers, from distal side, into index loops and pick up proximal radial index strings on their backs.
  • 12. Release little fingers and extend by turning palms outwards.
FIG. 39.
Illustration
24. RI BAARA I

(Bones of the Kingfish).

(Obtained on Beru.)

    METHOD
  • 1. Opening A.
  • 2. Place the tips of the indices together and exchange loops, passing the left index loop over the right index loop.
  • 3. Transfer thumb loops to indices.
  • 4. Insert thumbs, from distal side, into proximal index loops, then on into little finger loops from proximal side. Pick up radial little finger strings, return through proximal index loops and release little fingers.
  • 5. Transfer distal index loops to thumbs.
  • Gilbertese Movement
  • 6. Pass the four fingers of each hand distal to index and thumb loops and insert them, from distal side, into the proximal thumb loops. Pick up on their backs the proximal radial thumb strings and release thumbs from proximal loops.
  • 7. Transfer the loops over the four fingers of each hand to thumbs.
  • 8. Repeat movements 6 and 7.
  • 9. Twist thumb loops by rotating thumbs down towards you and up again.
  • Gilbertese Extension
  • 10. With the middle finger of the right hand push the radial index string, from distal side, through the thumb loops and hold between the teeth. Pass the ulnar index string distal to thumb loops and also hold between the teeth; release index finger.
  • 11. Transfer right thumb loops to right little finger and insert the thumb, from proximal side, into the mouth loop and pick up right mouth strings on its back; release strings from mouth and extend.
  • 12. Repeat 10 and 11 with left hand.
  • 13. Insert indices, from distal side, into little finger loops and pick up radial little finger strings after they have passed through loop formed by ulnar thumb strings.
  • 14. Extend by turning palms away from you and releasing thumbs.
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FIG. 40.
Illustration
25. RI-BAARA II
  • 1. Position 1.
  • 2. Insert right index finger, from distal side, behind left palmar string, rotate it away from you and up and draw hands apart.
  • 3. Pass left index finger, from distal side, through right index loop and insert it, also from distal side, behind right palmar string; pull this string through index loop, then rotate index finger away from you and up and draw hands apart.
  • 4. Perform 3 to 14 of Ri-Baara I.
26. O'N TE BWEREI

(The Wall of a “Bwerei”). 1

(Learnt from Nei Em, of Beru.)

Synonym: Te Roronga ae Tamaroa (a handsome bachelor). Tabiteuea.

    METHOD
  • 1. Position 1.
  • 2. Insert right index, from distal side, behind left palmar string, twist it towards you and up and return to right.
  • 3. Insert left index, from distal side, through right index loop and behind right palmar string, also from distal side; twist it towards you and up and return to left.
  • 4. Twist little finger loops by rotating little fingers away from you, down, towards you, under their own loops and up; twist thumb loops by rotating thumbs towards you, down, away from you, under their own loops and up.
  • 5. Transfer thumb loops to indices.
  • 6. Insert thumbs, from distal side, into proximal index loops, then on into little finger loops from proximal side. Pick up radial little finger strings, return through proximal index loops and release little fingers.
  • 7. Transfer distal index loops to thumbs.
  • Gilbertese Movement
  • 8. Pass the four fingers of each hand distal to index and thumb loops and insert them, from distal side, into the proximal thumb loops. Pick up on their backs the proximal radial thumb strings and return, releasing thumbs from proximal loops.
  • 9. Transfer loops over the four fingers of each hand to thumbs.
  • 10. Repeat 8 and 9.
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  • 11. Twist thumb loops by rotating thumbs towards you, down, away from you, under their own loops and up.
  • Gilbertese Movement
  • 12. With the middle finger of the right hand push the radial index string, from distal side, through the thumb loops and hold it between the teeth. Pass the ulnar index string distal to thumb loops and also hold between the teeth; release index finger.
  • 13. Transfer right thumb loops to right little finger and insert the thumb, from proximal side, into the mouth loop and pick up right mouth string on its back; release strings from mouth and extend.
  • 14. Repeat 12 and 13 with the left hand.
  • 15. Insert indices, from distal side, into little finger loops and pick up radial little finger strings after they have passed through loop formed by ulnar thumb strings.
  • 16. Extend by turning palms away from you and releasing thumbs.
FIG. 41.
Illustration

On being questioned as to why the figure was called “Te Roronga ae Tamaroa” on their island, our Tabiteuean informants said that in its symmetry and neatness it suggested a dapper and eligible young bachelor.

27. BU-N ANTI

(A Brood of Ghosts).

(Learnt by Teng Kaburara of Tarawa, who learnt it at Tabiteuea.)

    METHOD
  • 1. Opening A.
  • 2. Pass thumbs distal to index loops and insert into little finger loops from proximal side; return with radial little finger strings.
  • 3. Pass indices distal to palmar strings and insert into thumb loops from proximal side; pick up ulnar thumb strings and release thumbs.
  • 4. Pass thumbs, from distal side, through proximal index loops, insert into little finger loops from proximal side, return with radial little finger strings and release little fingers.
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  • Gilbertese Movement
  • 5. Transfer distal index loops to thumbs.
  • 6. Pass the four fingers of each hand distal to index and thumb loops and insert them, from distal side, into the proximal thumb loop. Pick up on their backs the proximal radial thumb strings and release thumbs from proximal loops.
  • 7. Insert thumbs, from proximal side, into the loops over the four fingers of each hand. Transfer these loops to thumbs.
  • 8. Repeat movements 6 and 7.
  • Gilbertese Extension
  • 9. With the middle finger of the right hand push the radial index string, from distal side, through the thumb loops and hold between the teeth. Pass the ulnar index string distal to thumb loop and also hold between the teeth; release index finger.
  • 10. Transfer right thumb loops to right little finger and insert thumb, from proximal side, into the mouth loop and pick up right mouth strings on its back; release strings from mouth and extend.
  • 11. Repeat movements 9 and 10 with the left hand.
  • 12. Insert indices, from distal side, into little finger loops and pick up radial little finger strings after they have passed through loop formed by ulnar thumb strings. Release thumbs.
  • 13. Extend by turning palms away.
FIG. 42.
Illustration
28. BAKABWI-N TE TABANOU

(A Bundle of Skulls).

(Learnt at South Tabiteuea.)

    METHOD
  • 1. Opening A.
  • 2. Place the tips of the indices together and exchange loops, passing the left index loop over the right index loop.
  • 3. Transfer thumb loops to indices.
  • 4. Pass thumbs, from distal side, through proximal index loops, insert them into little finger loops from proximal side; return with radial little finger strings and release little fingers.
  • 5. Transfer distal index loops to thumbs.
  • Gilbertese Movement
  • 6. Pass the four fingers of each hand distal to index and thumb loops and insert them, from distal side, into the proximal thumb loops. Pick up on their backs the proximal radial thumb strings and release thumbs from proximal loops.
  • 7. Insert thumbs, from proximal side, into the loops over the four fingers of each hand. Transfer these loops to thumbs.
  • 8. Repeat 6 and 7.
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  • Gilbertese Extension
  • 9. With the middle finger of the right hand push the radial index string, from distal side, through the thumb loops and hold it between the teeth. Pass the ulnar index string distal to thumb loop and also hold between the teeth; release index finger.
  • 10. Transfer right thumb loops to right little finger and insert thumb, from proximal side, into the mouth-loop and pick up right mouth-string on its back; release strings from mouth and extend.
  • 11. Perform 9 and 10 with the left hand.
  • 12. Insert indices, from distal side, into little finger loops and pick up radial little finger strings after they have passed through loop formed by ulnar thumb strings.
  • 13. Extend by turning palms away from you.

A “Bakabwi” connotes literally “a bundle of ten.” The Gilbertese collected the skulls of their enemies and their ancestors and kept them in bundles in their houses.

FIG. 43.
Illustration
29. TE KABANEI

(A Land Bird).

(Learnt from Nei Tekaibure, of Tabiteuea.)

    METHOD
  • 1. Mouth-loop Opening, Mouth-loop.
  • Mouth-loop Opening
  • 2. Insert right hand towards you into mouth-loop; pass it to left between your body and the left mouth-string; pick up this string on the back of right wrist and return to right, so that what is now the right dorsal string crosses the right mouth string close to the mouth.
  • 3. Mouth-loop Opening, Pass left hand between your body and the right mouth string, return to left with string on back of left wrist.
  • 4. There are now two loops, one small mouth-loop and one larger one below it; insert little fingers towards you into the mouth-loop, release string from mouth and extend.
  • 5. With mouth, from distal side, pull the ulnar wrist string towards you through little finger loops.
  • 6. Pass left thumb to right, distal to mouth loop and then, from proximal side, insert it into the mouth-loop; pick up right mouth-string on back of thumb and return to left.
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  • 7. Insert right thumb, from proximal side, into mouth-loop, pick up right mouth-string, release string from mouth and extend.
  • 8. Insert thumbs, from proximal side, into little finger loops and return with radial little finger strings on their backs.
  • 9. Caroline Extension.
  • 10. With the mouth remove loops from wrists.
  • 11. Work the hands apart until two finished diamonds appear with one unfinished diamond at either end.
  • 12. With the middle finger of the right hand push the right ulnar little finger string through the unfinished diamond close to the right hand and hold it between the teeth.
  • 13. Release right little finger and thumb. Transfer index-loop to position 1 on thumb and little finger. Insert thumb towards you into the mouth-loop and release string from mouth.
  • 14. Perform 12 and 13 with the left hand.
  • 15. Caroline Extension.
COMPARISON

Jenness gives a figure called “The Seine,” almost identical in its final result, but the working, which commences with Opening A, is entirely different.

Jenness, D., “Papuan Cat's Cradles,” J.R.A.I., vol. L, 1920, p. 309.

FIG. 44.
Illustration
30. TE ITUA NI BURE I

(A String of Cowrie Shells).

(Learnt from Nei Teububu, of Tabiteuea.)

    METHOD
  • Mouth-loop Opening
  • 1. Mouth-loop.
  • 2. Insert right hand towards you into mouth-loop; pass it to left between your body and the left mouth string; pick up this string on the back of right wrist and return to right, so that what is now the right dorsal string crosses the right mouth-string close to the mouth.
  • 3. Pass left hand between your body and the right mouth-string; return to left with string on back of left wrist.
  • 4. Insert little fingers, towards you, into the small loop close to the mouth, release string from mouth and extend.
  • 5. With the mouth, from distal side, pull the ulnar wrist string through little finger loop and hold between the teeth.

(To be continued.)

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Memoir No. 13
Supplement to the Journal of the Polynesian Society
STRING-FIGURES From the Gilbert Islands.

INSTALMENT No. 5

Pages 49—56

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- 49
  • 6. Pass left thumb to right, distal to mouth-loop, and then, from proximal side insert it into mouth-loop; pick up right mouth-string on back of thumb and return to left.
  • 7. Pass right thumb distal to left mouth-string, but proximal to right mouth-string, now passing round left thumb, then hook up left mouth-string; release string from mouth and extend.
  • 8. Insert thumbs, from proximal side, into little finger loops and return with radial little finger strings.
  • 9. Caroline Extension.
  • 10. Release radial index strings from thumbs and release little fingers.
  • 11. Insert middle, ring and little fingers of each hand, from proximal side, into the index loops. Close fingers over radial dorsal strings and let the ulnar dorsal string slip on to thumbs. Insert indices, from proximal side, into thumb loops and pick up ulnar thumb strings on their tips. Release radial index strings from thumbs.
  • 12. Release middle, ring and little fingers.
  • 13. Repeat 11.
  • 14. Release middle and ring fingers; rotate little fingers away from you and up and release thumbs.
  • 15. Pass thumbs proximal to index loops and insert into little finger loops from proximal side; rotate thumbs away from you, down, towards you, under their own loops and up, between index and wrist loops, carrying with them the ulnar little finger strings. Release little fingers.
  • 16. Insert middle, ring and little fingers of each hand, from proximal side, into the index loops. Close fingers over radial dorsal strings and let the ulnar dorsal string slip on to thumbs.
  • 17. Caroline Extension.
  • 18. Remove loops from wrists with mouth and gradually work the hands apart until the six diamonds appear.
FIG. 45.
Illustration
31. TE ITUA NI BURE II

(A string of Cowrie Shells).

(Learnt from Ten Teikarawa, of Nonouti.)

    METHOD
  • 1. Navaho Opening.
  • 2. Pass little fingers, from proximal side, through index loops and insert into thumb loops from proximal side; return through index loops with ulnar thumb strings.
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  • 3. Pass middle fingers distal to ulnar index strings and palmar strings and proximal to radial index strings; pick up the radial index strings on the tips of middle fingers and extend figure by turning the palms away from you and holding radial middle finger strings firmly by pressing indices against middle fingers.
  • 4. Release thumbs.
FIG. 46.
Illustration
32. BOUA-N NEI TAAI

(Pillars of the Sun). 2

(Learnt from Nei Karewenang, of Tabiteuea.)

    METHOD
  • 1. Mouth-loop.
  • Mouth-loop Opening
  • 2. Insert right hand towards you into mouth-loop; pass it to left between your body and the left mouth-string; pick up this string on the back of right wrist and return to right, so that what is now the right dorsal-string crosses the right mouth-string close to the mouth.
  • 3. Pass left hand between your body and the right mouth-string; return to left with string on back of left wrist.
  • 4. Insert little fingers, towards you, into the small loop close to mouth, release string from mouth and extend.
  • 5. Pass mouth proximal to all strings, grasp ulnar little finger string between teeth and pull it towards you.
  • 6. Pass right thumb to left, distal to mouth-loop and then, from proximal side, insert it into mouth-loop; pick up left mouth-string on back of thumb and return to right.
  • 7. Pass left thumb distal to right mouth-string, but proximal to left mouth-string, now passing round right thumb, then hook up right mouth-string, release string from mouth and extend.
  • 8. Insert thumbs, from proximal side, into little finger loops, return with radial little finger strings on their backs.
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  • 9. Pass indices distal to palmar string and pick up, from proximal side, the ulnar thumb strings; release thumbs and little fingers.
  • Right Hand—
  • 10. Transfer index-loop to thumb.
  • 11. Transfer wrist-loop to Position 1 on thumb and little finger, by holding radial wrist-string between the teeth, removing the hand from the loop and then inserting thumb and little finger into the loop from proximal side.
  • Left Hand—
  • 12. Repeat 10 and 11 with the left hand.
  • 13. Caroline Extension.
FIG. 47.
Illustration
33. TANINGA-N NOUAIA 3

(The Ears of a Jelly-fish).

(Obtained at Beru.)

    METHOD
  • Mouth-loop Opening
  • 1. Mouth-loop.
  • 2. Insert right hand towards you into the mouth-loop; pass it to left between your body and the left mouth-string, pick up this string on the back of right wrist and return to right, so that what is now the right dorsal string crosses the right mouth-string close to the mouth.
  • 3. Pass left hand between your body and the right mouth-string; return to left with this string on back of left wrist.
  • 4. There are now two loops, one small mouth-loop and one larger one below it; insert little fingers towards you into the mouth-loop, release strings from mouth and extend.
  • 5. Pass the mouth proximal to all strings, grasp the ulnar wrist-string and pull it towards you.
  • 6. Pass left thumb to right, distal to mouth-loop and then, from proximal side, insert it into the mouth-loop, pick up left mouth-string on back of thumb and return to left.
  • 7. Insert right thumb, from proximal side, into mouth-loop, pick up the right mouth-string, release string from mouth and extend.
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  • 8. Insert thumbs, from proximal side, into little finger loops, return with radial little finger strings.
  • 9. Insert indices, from proximal side, into thumb loops, pick up ulnar thumb strings and release thumbs.
  • 10. Pass thumbs proximal to index loops, insert into little finger loops from proximal side and release little fingers.
  • 11. Insert thumbs, from distal side, into index loops and release indices.
  • 12. Insert little fingers, from proximal side, into distal thumb loops and return with distal ulnar thumb strings.
  • 13. Pass indices distal to palmar string, insert, from proximal side, into thumb loops and pick up ulnar thumb strings.
  • 14. Release thumbs.
  • 15. Repeat 10, 11, 12 and 13.
  • 16. Release little fingers and return them into the same loop but from distal side.
  • 17. Release thumbs.
  • 18. Pass thumbs proximal to index loops, insert them, from proximal side, into little finger loops; rotate thumbs away from you, down, towards you and up, between index and wrist loops, carrying with them the ulnar little finger strings. Release little fingers.
  • 19. Repeat 11 and 12.
  • 20. Release wrists from loops by grasping each ulnar wrist string in turn with the mouth and withdrawing the hand from the wrist-loop. Draw the hands slightly farther apart.
  • 21. Caroline Extension.
FIG. 48.
Illustration
34. KAN RAURE

(The Parting).

(Learnt from Nei Kinaua, of Tabiteuea.)

    METHOD
  • 1. Mouth-loop Opening, Mouth-loop.
  • 2. Insert right hand towards you into mouth-loop; pass it to left between your body and the left mouth-string; pick up this string on the back of right wrist and return to right, so that what is now the right dorsal-string crosses the right mouth-string close to the mouth.
  • 3. Pass left hand between your body and the right mouth-string, return to left with string on back of left wrist.
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  • 4. There are now two loops, one small mouth-loop and one larger one below it; insert little fingers towards you into the mouth-loop, release strings from mouth and extend.
  • 5. Insert the chin, from distal side, into little finger loops, grasp between the teeth the ulnar wrist-string and pull it towards you.
  • 6. Pass right thumb to left, distal to mouth-loop and then, from proximal side, insert it into the mouth-loop; pick up left mouth-string on back of thumb and return to right.
  • 7. Insert left thumb, from proximal side, into mouth-loop, pick up left mouth-string, release string from mouth and extend.
  • 8. Insert thumbs, from proximal side, into little finger loops and return with radial little finger strings on their backs.
  • 9. Caroline Extension.
  • 10. With the mouth take hold of the right radial wrist string and pull the loop off the right wrist; likewise remove the loop from the left wrist.
  • Right Hand—
  • 11. With the middle finger push the ulnar little finger string towards you between the two radial thumb-strings and hold it between the teeth. Release little finger and thumb; transfer index-loop to Position 1 on thumb and little finger; insert thumb from distal side into mouth-loop and release string from mouth.
  • Left Hand—
  • 12. Repeat 11 with the left hand.
  • 13. Caroline Extension.
COMPARISON

See “Kani Mumun.” The figures there mentioned are really more similar to “Kan Raure” than to “Kani Mumun.”

FIG. 49.
Illustration
35. MATA-N NTONGO

(The Eyes of Ntongo).

(Obtained at Onotoa.)

    METHOD
  • 1. Opening A.
  • 2. Insert indices, from distal side, into little finger loops, bring them towards you, proximal to radial little finger strings and index-loops, and return to position by bringing them up between the ulnar thumb-strings and radial index-strings.
  • 3. Release little fingers.
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  • 4. Insert little fingers, from distal side, into index-loops and hook down both ulnar index-strings.
  • 5. With the mouth, from distal side, grasp the left ulnar thumb-string and release both thumbs.
  • 6. Pull the string held in the mouth a few inches to the right. Right Hand—
  • 7. Insert thumb, from proximal side, into the mouth-loop, pass it distal to the right mouth-string, insert it into index-loop from proximal side and bring it round behind the loop depending from the horizontal strings of the figure. Bring to an upright position and release string from mouth.
  • 8. A single string will now be seen encircling the base of the thumb. Pass the mouth distal to radial thumb strings and pick up this string on its palmar aspect.
  • 9. Pass index finger distal to the ulnar thumb-string which runs from hand to hand and hook it down, pull it gently to the right allowing the index loops to slip off and releasing thumb and little finger but keeping the index finger pointing downwards.
  • 10. Transfer index-loop to Position 1 on thumb and little finger.
  • 11. Insert thumb, from distal side, into mouth-loop and release string from mouth.
  • 12. With the mouth pick up the right ulnar thumb-string after it has passed through the double loop.
  • 13. Repeat from 7 with the left hand.
  • 14. Caroline Extension.
FIG. 50.
Illustration

NOTE—This is a difficult figure to extend satisfactorily and can only be mastered with practice.

36. TE NANO-NI BAI I

(The Palm of the Hand).

(Learnt from Nei Tebaibure, of Tabiteuea.)

    METHOD
  • 1. Double loop in Position 1 on left hand.
  • 2. Grasp palmar string with right thumb and index finger, pull it to right and release it.
  • 3. With the right index finger and thumb draw out left palmar string between radial little finger and ulnar thumb strings; place it on right thumb and little finger in Position 1.
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  • 4. Insert right index finger, from proximal side, under left palmar string and draw it out.
  • 5. Insert right thumb, from distal side, into right index loop and release right index finger.
  • 6. Insert left thumb, from proximal side, into left little finger loop and return with radial little finger string.
  • 7. Caroline Extension.
  • 8. Navaho the thumb-loops.
  • 9. Release little fingers and extend figure by turning palms towards from you.
Rabatana
  • Right Hand—
  • 10. Take the radial thumb strings between the teeth and release the thumb. Transfer the index-loop to Position 1 on thumb and little finger. Insert thumb, from distal side, into mouth-loop and release string from mouth.
  • 11. Perform 10 with the left hand.
  • 12. Caroline Extension.
COMPARISON

For comparisons to “Te Nano ni Bai I” see 4 Hornell's work on Fijian String Figures where, under the figure “Mata Upenga,” he classifies them into three groups.

FIG. 51.
Illustration
37. TE NANO-NI BAI II

(The Palm of the Hand).

(Obtained at Tarawa.)

    METHOD
  • 1. Opening A.
  • 2. Transfer index-loops to wrists.
  • 3. Insert indices, from distal side, into thumb-loops, then insert them, still pointing down and also from distal side, into little finger loops. Hook up radial little finger strings towards you and turn palms upwards.
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  • 4. With the right thumb and index finger pick up the left ulnar thumb-string and radial index string where they cross on the centre of the left palm. Remove left thumb, index and little finger.
  • 5. Insert left little finger, from right to left, into the near loop (i.e., the original thumb loop). Pass left thumb distal to left radial little finger string, then round the far loop (i.e., the original index loop) and insert it into this loop from right to left. Release strings held between right thumb and index finger.
  • 6. Repeat 5 with the other hand.
  • 7. Repeat 3, 4, 5 and 6 twice.
  • 8. Insert indices, from distal side, into thumb-loops, then insert them, still pointing down and also from distal side, into little finger loops. Hook up radial little finger strings towards you, press middle fingers against indices to hold ulnar index-strings and turn palms upwards.
FIG. 52.
Illustration
38. NEI AUTI

(The Pleiades.)

(Learnt from Nei Teraiti, of Onotoa.)

(Also collected by Mr. Grimble at Makin.)

Synonym: Na Ura (the crayfish).

    METHOD
  • 1. Double string.
  • 2. Insert thumbs into the double loop, pass right little finger to left and towards you, over the ulnar and radial thumb-strings, insert it, from proximal side, into the left thumb loop; pick up the radial thumb-strings and return to right.
  • 3. Pass left little finger to right and towards you, over the ulnar and radial thumb-strings, insert it, from proximal side, into the right thumb loop; pick up the radial thumb-strings and return to left.
  • 4. Insert thumbs, from proximal side, into little finger loops, return with radial little finger strings.
  • 5. Caroline Extension.
  • 6. Grasp one of the hanging strings with the mouth and navaho thumb-loops with it.

(To be continued.)

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1   A “Bwerei” is an old type of storehouse built on piles and having walls made of pandanus thatch.
2   We have not been able to find out what is meant exactly by “Pillars of the Sun.” One informant said he thought they were sunbeams.
3   The “Nouaia” is a particular species of jelly-fish having flappers or ears.
4   Hornell, ibid. page 74.