Breaking News

Musangwe -The Mysterious Venda Combat

by Byo24
15 December 2010 | 3579 Views
Like singing, fighting has always been an African tradition; Vhavenda tribe in South Africa has own fighting club tradition called Musangwe which dates back from 18 centuries about 300 year old. 

This anual event takes place at Tshifudi cattle dip where any male from the age of nine battle for pride.

Other African Tribes make use of fighting sticks (Nduku) like Zulu (Nguni) while vhaVenda people go at it hummer and tongs with their bare hands. In addition, Nigeria in West Africa also has a Traditional Boxing called Dambe (also known as Kokawa) which is associated with Hausa People. 

It is arguable that African Tradition glorifies masculinity; a man is then defined by the strength, power and influence he has among other men or community as a whole. A man is also expected to protect his family in every circumstances. 

The Musangwe combat or the fight in African tradition is regarded as a game and a means to gain status and respect among community.

The magnitudes of people draw together around a dust patch scrambling to get a better view of their local favorites exchanging fists with other potential oponents. While men leave for Tshifudi battling field, women are left behind to do household tasks. According to Venda tradition women are not allowed to attend or physically participate in Musangwe combat. 

In the olden days, boys primary responsibility was to head cattle and they used to battle every time when they took cattle to the dipping area, that's the reason Musangwe even today takes place near a dip because that's where boys used to gather. 

Perhaps is another reason women are not allowed to participate in Musangwe, but other people belive that something awful happens to women menstruation circle if they dare attend the event.

Musangwe is always under control. One of the traditional healer maintain that muti and other rituals traditional healers perfome before the annual event could actualy kick start help to keep calm and control on the battle field. According to the roports there has been only one repported death of 'Belingwe' who was allegedly killed by Frans Malala with a puch during Musangwe fight. It is also stated that after the death, the investigating magistrate asked Frans to kill a donky with a one blow to prove Belingwe's death was an accident. "he hit the donkey and it fell and magistrate could see that he was very strong".

There are actually rules in Musangwe; they're just not written in stone. At least one of them being that a downed opponent cannot be hit. There isn't an official to dictate this rule, but there are spectators armed with whipping sticks to let it be known that enough is enough. 

The second rule regards challenges. One fighter can challenge any other fighter by presenting his fist to his potential opponent. This makes for an electric atmosphere.

There's a constant mix of seasoned veterans looking to popularize their masculinity, fighters seeking to put on a show. At times, the Musangwe combatants seem controlled by an unseen forces. Fighting styles become unnatural, uncontrollable and unpredictable. 

Everyone believes supernatural forces are at work. People also believe that it depends on how strong your muti is, the weaker the muti the powerless you will become.

There are three levels of fighters. Young boys, dubbed "mambibi", encouraged to play fight by their fathers. Then there are the teenage fighters, the "Rovhasize". But it's the experienced fighters that everyone come to see. The champions. 




Venda Musangwe


Disclaimer:
All articles and letters published on Bulawayo24 have been independently written by members of Bulawayo24's community. The views of users published on Bulawayo24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Bulawayo24. Bulawayo24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.

Source: Bulawayo24

Is Itai Dzamara eyeing the US Green Card?

Yes
20.45%
No
73.79%
Not sure
5.76%
538

Comments

Live Debate

Any good reason why South Africa doesn't celebrate Africa Day?

by Ndou Paul | 2012 November 08 | 255 Views

News Updates

Email:

Latest News

Zimbabwean man selling aphrodisiac in the streets - Video - Zimbabwe...

by Staff reporter | 25 May 2015 | 211 Views

African Leaders don't respect the meaning of African Day - Today is a ...

by Richard M Simango | 25 May 2015 | 187 Views

Chicken Inn opens outlet in Gwanda

by Staff reporter | 25 May 2015 | 265 Views

Moeletsi Mbeki's think tank could be a project of westerners - EDITOR...

by Chido Chikuni | 25 May 2015 | 276 Views

Mugabe owes Kaukonde $30 million - PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe last Thursd...

by Staff reporter | 25 May 2015 | 1553 Views

Zanu-PF chairperson joins MDC-T - ZANU-PF Gokwe Town Centre chairperso...

by Staff reporter | 25 May 2015 | 1348 Views

Zimbabwe suspends 15% platinum levy - ZIMBABWE has put the brakes on a...

by Staff reporter | 25 May 2015 | 432 Views

Man fatally assaulted at a prayer confession session

by Nokusa Masuku | 25 May 2015 | 1068 Views

Welshman Ncube accuses West of sponsoring conflict

by Nduduzo Tshuma | 25 May 2015 | 946 Views

Khaya Moyo questions Tsvangirai's sanity

by Nduduzo Tshuma | 25 May 2015 | 866 Views

Mliswa accused of inciting hatred, tribalism and violence

by Stephen Jakes | 25 May 2015 | 824 Views

Protesters bay for Langa's blood

by Stephen Jakes | 25 May 2015 | 799 Views

Political development is more than the exit of Mugabe

by Tendai Kwari | 25 May 2015 | 528 Views

MDC-T senator releases album

by Thobekile Zhou | 25 May 2015 | 1043 Views

Donation to Highlanders by Zanu-PF is political gimmick - analysts - S...

by Stephen Jakes | 25 May 2015 | 1092 Views

Telecel operations update - Telecel Zimbabwe would like assure all its...

by Telecel Zimbabwe | 25 May 2015 | 548 Views

When political 'Suspensions' become a weapon to suppress - I am not fo...

by Mukoma Mufundi Akanzvera Magwaro | 25 May 2015 | 526 Views

SA police initial probe on Zim Intercape bus robbery - Police on Thurs...

by Stephen Jakes | 25 May 2015 | 1084 Views

Bulawayo snubs Big Nuz - AFTER gathering strength to make the long tri...

by Kusile Madlela | 25 May 2015 | 910 Views

Entertainment

Winky D face 10 year UK ban for fraud

by Staff Reporter | 24 May 2015 | 4232 Views

Ngibhace ezizweni - Unkown Artist - ...

by Staff Reporter | 23 May 2015 | 3320 Views

Zimbabwe linked Tinashe nominated for a BET award - TINASHE Jorgenson ...

by Staff reporter | 23 May 2015 | 1980 Views

Don Moen to perform at Prophet Magaya's crusade - American gospel mu...

by Staff reporter | 23 May 2015 | 1881 Views

South African soapie stars expected in Bulawayo - SOUTH Africa's soap...

by Bongani Ndlovu | 23 May 2015 | 2495 Views

Energy Mutodi faces fresh theft charges - Flamboyant businessman and ...

by Staff reporter | 23 May 2015 | 1973 Views

All set for Jah Prayzah album launch

by Brendon Nyoni | 22 May 2015 | 2608 Views
iBlog

Four In 10 Americans Face Regular Online Fraud Attacks

Microsoft offers four primary tips to help protect users from identity theft:• be selfish and defensive with personal information by not sharing sensitive details in emails, and instant and text messages• create, use and keep secret so-called “... Read More
SecNews 24 October 2014 ago

The Nsa Gets An Ok For Telephony Metadata Collection Yet Again

As much as we’d like to forget about the national security agency (nsa) and its mass surveillance program, it seems that there is no distracting ourselves from this unnerving reality.missing from the news for quite some time now, the issue has resu... Read More
SecNews 09 July 2014 ago