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date: 03 April 2020

Mumia wa Shiundu locked

(18491949),
  • Hannington Ochwada

Extract

also known as Nabongo (king) Mumia of Wanga (in present-day Kenya), was born around 1849 in the Wanga kingdom, in what is now Western Kenya.

Oral traditions claim that the first five children born to his mother Wamanya and his father Wamukoya Shiundu died during infancy. This caused some anxiety at the king’s court, because the Wanga believed that such deaths were abnormal and caused by evil spirits. To appease these evil spirits, the Wanga performed an elaborate ritual to protect the newborn child, who was left on the wayside and designated as “rubbish” (Makokha He would then be picked up by someone either by prearrangement or by a stranger while the mother of the child or her agent kept watch The mother or agent then emerged from the hideout to claim the child Wanga folklore claims that the child was picked up by a stranger known as ...

A version of this article originally appeared in The Dictionary of African Biography.

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