Mouse Oracle
Baule, Ivory Coast

Inventory # 10741

The Baule people have diviners who make a contraption for the purposes of oracular divination, called mouse oracle or a Gbekre, which contains mice. The diviner displays weaponry and iron gongs. A mouse of the various field mouse is put within a cylindrical vessel within which vessel the mouse has something to eat. As the mouse eats it displaces little batons attached to the side of a tortoise shell tray within the vessel. As the batons fall they create a unique pattern on the ground and the diviner looks at these to tell the divination.