Zande binza (witchdoctor)

Zande binza (witchdoctor)
140 x 80 mm | Print gelatin silver
There are records relating to alternative images that we do not have scans for in the database:
1998.341.732.1 - Negative film nitrate , (140 x 80 mm)
Sulphide staining [EE 1989]
Date of Print:
Previous PRM Number:
Previous Other Number:
51 8 (+41)

Accession Number:
A portrait of a binza at a homestead in full dancing apparel, with onlookers sheltering under a granary. Abinza were summoned to divine (do avure) at homesteads by people wishing to root out the witchcraft responsible for illness or misfortune, but their pronouncements were not held as infallible by most. A skin drum (gaza) to be played during the seance stands nearby.
Edward Evan Evans-Pritchard
Date of Photo:
1927 - 1930
[Southern Sudan] Western Equatoria Yambio
Publication History:
Contemporary Publication - Reproduced as Plate XXXI Fig 1 in E. E. Evans-Pritchard's article 'The Zande Corporation of Witchdoctors', JRAI Vol. LXII, 1932, with the caption 'Fig.1 - Witchdoctor. Note magic whistles slung around chest (in the middle of them is a Zande grass purse), animal skins, leg and waist rattles. The drum is an ordinary Zande leather-topped drum." [Chris Morton 15/11/2004]
Reproduced as Plate XIV (facing page 156) in E. E. Evans-Pritchard's
Witchcraft, Oracles and Magic Among the Azande (OUP 1937), with the caption "A witch-doctor. (Note magic whistles across his chest. In the centre is a grass purse." [CM 17/8/2005]
PRM Source:
Edward Evan Evans-Pritchard
Donated 1966
Other Owners:
E. E. Evans-Pritchard Collection
Clothing Ritual , Religion , Ritual , Music
Headdress , Oracle Divination , Musical Instrument Drum
Original catalogue lists in Manuscript Collections. Additional material in related documents files. [CM 27/9/2005]
Primary Documentation:
PRM Accession Records - [1966.27.21] G PROFESSOR E. E. EVANS-PRITCHARD; INST. OF SOCIAL ANTHROPOLOGY, 51 BANBURY RD. OXFORD - S. SUDAN, AZANDE TRIBE. Box of negatives in envelopes. Nos. 1 - 400
Added Accession Book Entry - [In pencil in column] Catalogue room.
[1966.27.23] G PROFESSOR E. E. EVANS-PRITCHARD; INST. OF SOCIAL ANTHROPOLOGY, 51 BANBURY RD. OXFORD - S. SUDAN, AZANDE TRIBE. Box of prints in envelopes, nos. 1 - 400 (prints of negatives in 1966.27.21)

Manual Catalogues [typewritten, entitled "Zande Photographs (E-P)"] - 732. Dance of medicine man (Large size). 51/6 (+41) [
NB this is a misreading of the print reverse which actually states "51/8"][Chris Morton 5/12/2003]

Notes on card mount m/s pencil - "SS overall 8.89"
Other Information:
Ethnographic context - In Witchcraft, Oracles and Magic Among the Azande (OUP 1937, page 154-157) E. E. Evans-Pritchard notes that 'The professional robes with which witch-doctors adorn themselves while the dancing ground is being marked out consist of straw hats topped with large bunches of feathers of geese and parrots and other marsh and bush birds. Strings of magic whistles made from peculiar trees are strung across their chests and tied round their arms. Skins of wild cats, civet cats, genets, servals, and other carnivora and small rodents, as well as monkeys (especially the colobus), are tucked under their waiststrings so that they form a fringe which entirely covers the barkcloth worn by all male Azande. Over the skins they tie a string of fruits of the doleib palm (Borassus flabellifer)....'
Christopher Morton 5/12/2003 [Southern Sudan Project]
Funded by Arts and Humanities Research Council
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