Explorations in History and Society

Exploring and Collecting the History of the Somali clan of Hawiye.

Astrological proverbs of the Hawiyya

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I here list apart some proverbs that are based on observations of the stars and on the solar year of the Somalis.    

1) “The waberís  appeared on Sunday: thus Danwên or of the people who are living with them! If the Sunday is on the 6: then Darôd or of the people dependent on them!” (Waberis  is the Somali name of the sa‘ban  lunation) The Danwen are a group of the Hawiyya tribe.  

2) ‘id sáfa digi mayso áqalki lögú dïsó  . “The safar does not make the hut that is built during it become a family.” 

3) “The month of sonqad   that starts on Saturday: the girl sells her modesty in order to buy polenta, the ninety-year-old man cries for food.” ( sonqad is the month of Ramadan.)    

4) “In the fortieth and in the mouth of a newborn child one is unable not to find a dribble.” (The fourth decade of the seasons of gu and dayr always brings rain.) “Between the year and the drops there are in the middle thirty nights.” (A light rain, which is called hagay,  is to be expected thirty days after the Somali New Year’s Day.)

6) “The moon of sékko,   if it appears on Wednesday, if it does not have great deceit, it has little deceit.” ( sékko is the Somali name of the lunation of muharram)

7) “The moon of boqoson if it appears precisely, it is propitious for the ovines and the camels; if it is late, they will become sick.” ( boqoson is the Somali name of the lunation of gumadà al-ahir.)      

8) “The lunation is of three novenes and three nights. Of the three novenes, one novene is for the nobles, one is for the religious, one is for the people. One who was born in the novene of the nobles has the behavior of the noble. One who was born in the novene of the religious has the behavior of a religious. One who was born in the novene of the people has the behavior of a common man. One who was born during the three nights has the behavior of a gloomy man.”

9) “One who was born in ‘kuhedín’ cannot be robbed of wealth. One who was born in ‘kalahánlä’   cannot be robbed of wealth. ( kuhedín   and kalahánlä  are the Somali lunar stations numbered 12 and 13, according to the nomenclature of the Hawiyya.)

10) “The kalahánlä  precedes the dirir by two nights. Its propitious days are Friday and Thursday. If it comes on another day, it is not propitious.” ( kalahanlä   is the 12th lunar station; dirir [= α Virginis] is the 14th station.)


Enrico Cerulli “How a Hawiye tribe use to live”


Written by hawiye1

May 26, 2009 at 11:48 pm

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