Do you know that Spitting on People is a form of blessing? and it is often done as a way of wishing someone a good life? Neither did we, until we started researching some weird facts about Africa.
Here, we’ve outlined 7 weird facts about Africa that will make your day.
Table of Contents
These 7 weird facts about Africa will make your day
1. Elongated Skull is a form of beauty
Ever heard of an elongated skull being a form of beauty? Odd right? Well, I would love to inform you that to the Mangbetu tribe in DR Congo it’s no form of deformity but a symbol of beauty, prestige, and power. Its a sign of higher intelligence and status symbol among the ruling class. The Mangbetu tribe go as far as wrapping their babies head with tight clothes one month after birth to get the desired elongated shape referred locally as “Lipombo”.
2. Spitting on People is a form of blessing
Spitting on people is another form of blessing and a show of goodwill common among the Maasi tribe in Kenya and Tanzania. Elders, relatives and family friends spit on a new born baby as a way of wishing the child a good life. Adults are also spat on too, this signifies blessing and transfer of power especially when one is embarking on an important journey, more like saying “safe journey o”. Maasi warriors also spit in their palms before shaking elders, a show of respect and humility.
3. Decorating of hair and skin with otjize: a combination of butter, red ochre and fat
Another Interesting traditional practice among Africans is decorating of hair and skin with otjize: a combination of butter, red ochre and fat, by Himba women in Northern Namibia. The women of Himba have a distinct red skin tone as a result of continuous application of Otjize on their skin and hair. It is said to be a form of beauty, sunscreen and helps in warding off insects, flies and mosquitoes. Talk about red beauty, Himba women are one!
4. Proving manhood among Hamer tribe in Ethiopia is by racing and jumping on the back of bulls
A means of proving manhood among Hamer tribe in Ethiopia is by racing and jumping on the back of bulls, funny as it sounds, any man who hasn’t performed this rite among the Hamer tribe is not considered yet a man, and this is done nude!
5. The men from Tuareg community in Berber, Algeria wear their Tagelmust headdresses as a veil
The men from Tuareg community in Berber, Algeria wear their Tagelmust headdresses as a veil. The men have the veil on to protect themselves from sun and more importantly hide their face from strangers and women, as it is considered a taboo for a woman not your wife or close relative to see your face.
6. Healing dance is practiced by Khoisan people in South Africa
Healing dance is practiced by Khoisan people in South Africa. Seen as a traditional means of healing chronic ailment. The sick person is made to dance like in a kind of trance, led by elders and traditional healers chanting traditional songs and breathing heavily to induce a spell on the patient. Dance thus brings healing!
7. Marrying of corpse is another culture unique to Akwa Ibom state in Nigeria
Marrying of corpse is another culture unique to Akwa Ibom, a state in Nigeria. Any man that does not marry his wife duly as per the culture of the people, if the woman dies, no matter how many children she had bared for the man or how old they are, before she can be buried, the man must perform the complete marital rites as though she was alive, else the children belongs to the woman’s family forever and disastrous consequence awaits the man.
The whole sphere of Africa has interesting cultural beliefs and traditions believed and practiced. Weird, funny and superstitious some may sound but this makes us unique as Africans across the globe and yea, that’s how we roll!