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 [31. The Yam-hills.]


31. The Yam-hills.

The yam-hill story is very common in Jamaica. Parkes learned it in Kingston. Pamela Smith tells it, page 59 and JAFL 9:278. Sometimes a song accompanies the story. The number of Yam-hills varies.

Compare Cronise and Ward, 167-171; Parsons, Andros Island, 109.

{p. 254}

The story depends upon the idea that it is unlucky to reveal to others a marvel one has seen oneself, or to repeat certain taboo words. A lad in the Santa Cruz mountains explained the taboo by saying that Anansi had "six" legs. Another said that Anansi's mother's name was "Six." So in Pamela Smith (JAFL 9:278), the Queen's name is "Five." Compare Rivière, 177; Krug, JAFL 25:120; Schwab, JAFL 32:437, and the next two numbers in this collection.

Next: Note 32. The Law against Back-biting.