Mwetyi a Great Spirit venerated by the Shekani and Bakele people in Southern Guinea. The following account of him is given by Mr. Wilson in his Western Africa: "He is supposed to dwell in the bowels of the earth, but comes to the surface of the ground at stated seasons, or when summoned on any special business. A large, flat house, of peculiar form, covered with dry plantain-leaves, is erected in the middle of the village for the temporary sojourn of this spirit, and it is from this building that he gives forth his oracular answers. The house is always kept perfectly dark. and no one is permitted to enter it except those who have been initiated into all the mysteries of the order, which includes, however, almost the whole of the adult male population of the village. Strange noises issue forth from this dark den, not unlike the growling of a tiger, which the knowing ones interpret to suit their own purposes. The women and children are kept in a state of constant trepidation; and, no doubt, one of the chief ends of the ceremonies connected with the visits of this mysterious being is to keep the women and children in a state of subordination. He is the great African Bluebeard, whom every woman and child in the country holds in the utmost dread. Every boy, from the age of fourteen to eighteen, is initiated into all the secrets pertaining to this Great Spirit. The term of discipleship is continued for a year or more, during which period they are subjected to a good deal of rough treatment — such undoubtedly, as makes a lasting impression both upon their physical and mental natures, and prevents them from divulging the secrets of the order. At the time of matriculation a vow is imposed, such as refraining from a particular article of food or drink, and is binding for life. When Mwetyi is about to retire from a village where he has been discharging his manifold functions, the women and children, and any strangers who may be there at the time, are required to leave the village. What ceremonies are performed at this time is known, of course, only to the initiated. When a covenant is about to be performed among the different tribes, Mwetyi is always invoked as a witness, and is commissioned with the duty of visiting vengeance upon the party who shall violate the engagement. Without this their national treaties would have little or no force. When a law is passed which the people wish to be specially binding, they invoke the vengeance of Mwetvi upon every transgression; and this, as a general thing, is ample guarantee for its observance. The Mpongwee people sometimes call in thee Shekanis to aid them, through the agency of this Great Spirit, to give sanctity and authority to their laws."

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