The Mostali & 12 Naked Elf Women

From: John P Hughes (
Date: Fri 19 Aug 1994 - 03:11:20 EEST

THOSE DAMNED DORADDI RIDDLES Not much bite at all for these (thanks Martin). Were they too hard, or did I pick the wrong time - a couple of days before Convulsion?

Here are the riddles again and later, their answers. They were collected from semi-nomadic Doraddi tribal people, and, as Martin suggested, do reveal a lot about their culture and ways of thinking. Mostly they are about everyday objects, and occurences, though 9 is not.

I would not be surprised if similar riddles were told by the nomads of Prax.

  1. A white hut without door or windows: goodness and life within.
  2. My hut has no fire, no lamp. The door is closed.
  3. The one who fights slowly.
  4. A chief who sits among thorns.
  5. My mother's hut with one supporting post: healing, eating and lineage within.
  6. Five hunting dogs go in the same hole.
  7. Going I found it, returning I found it not.
  8. Our great bull rubs the reeds on Banini Lake.
  9. The tree moves; fruits out of season.
  10. Two little holes that devour all; only spirits do not go there.
  11. Plants make it; good to eat. Red below, black in middle, white on top.
  12. The little animal that comes on fiercely: when it reaches the path of its mate, the fierceness departs.
  13. She carries her belly on her back.
  14. The walker gives to birth to the non-walker, the non-walker to the walker.
  15. It digs about the deserted village: it sees things that are no longer there.

HINTS: Doraddi spend a lot of time thinking about food. 4 & 6 are somehow linked. 13 is very difficult, but the riddle would be valid anywhere in Glorantha or earth. 7 is true only at certain times of the year.

GO BACK! DON'T READ THE ANSWERS YET: YOU CAN WORK SOME OF THEM OUT. Here they are: 1. An egg. 2. A grave (Doraddi are earth worshippers). 3. Hunger. 4. The tongue (among teeth). 5. A healing plant (totemic; inherited matralineally). 6. Fingers carrying food into the mouth. 7. Dew. 8. A canoe. 9. The Kresh. 10. The eyes (spirits are normally invisible) 11. Porridge in a pot on the fire. 12. A grass-fire. 13. The calf of the leg. (I got lynched for that one). 14. Chicken and egg. 15. Memory.

And there's still a prize for someone who comes up with an answer to:

Keruan comes and he children dance: the mother does nor dance.

I can't answer it because I didn't write it down and have since forgotten it.

Have Fun folks (Hee Hee)



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