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Yoruba Oral Genre For Hunters Funeral



Yoruba Oral Genre For Hunters Funeral

There are many types of oral genres in Yoruba society. These genres have different functions for different occasions depending on which group they belong. Also, burial rites differ.

The funeral rites for Hunters are different from the funeral rites for Kings, the funeral rites for Older people are different for someone that died young, and the funeral rites for someone that commit suicide is different for someone that died during battle.

The Funeral rites for the dead hunter are called Iremoje and the funeral rites for the elderly are called isaaro.

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Ìrèmojé eré ìṣípà ọdẹ (hunters funeral dirge) and ìsààró (women funeral dirge) are used during men and women funeral rites respectively.

If I had lived in those days, I would have love to be Ode(hunter)..

It’s miseducation to think that Babalawo means someone that possesses “charm”.

Ode’s are mastery of different charms, poison, antidotes, and dog trainers, They were survivors. It was a common practise for a hunter to go on expeditions for weeks sometimes months, they understand different terrains, and when they gathered together they chant “Ijala ode”
When they died Ìrèmoje is their burial rite.

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Iremojé is one of the genres of Yoruba oral literature. It is used by Ogun devotees and specifically for men hunters. Ìrèmojé chant is usually for a specific purpose, it is not what you can chant any time you like.

It is usually chanted to perform the funeral rites of a great hunter.The final burial rites often take place at midnight in a faraway bush outside the town.

When a renowned hunter dies, all other hunters usually gather at his house, that is, at the graveside to chant in honour of the dead. (traditionally,Yoruba burial their dead at home)During this time, hunters who are not well-armed with charms and versed in Ìrèmojé chant does not participate because during the night, incantations are used to test whether a hunter is powerful and well versed in Ìrèmojé chant.

Ìrèmojé chant takes place at the grave of the renowned hunter for good seven days with merriments, Food and drinks are usually provided for the participating hunters but the seventh night marks the end of the burial rites.

During this night, a statue is normally made inside the far bush outside the town and the hunter’s regalia known as gberiọdẹ is put on the statue with the cap on, then all the materials used by the hunter during his life such as cutlass, cloth, cap, charms etc. are also put in one basket and the materials are taken one after the other to pray for the dead hunter so that he may be well received by the co-hunters in the world beyond.

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So, this particular ceremony known as ìṣípà ọdẹ is to send forth the dead hunter in the world.

Some of the words found in Isipa Ode

Elérèé, baba Àràmò j̣ íèlè
Bí gúgúrú bá bódẹ d ̣ é’jù,
A dèsúnp ̣ ín-ń-pín
Bó b’ó ̣ dẹ d ̣ é’jù
A sìdoyinmọmọ
Àgbàdoọdẹ náàrè é oo,
Àràmò j̣ íèlèoo

Keep quiet
Maintain perfect silence
If a hunter takes popcorn to a hunting expedition
It has to economize
If the hunter takes fresh maize
With him on a hunting expedition
It becomes a valuable commodity
Here is the Hunter’s popcorn
Here is the hunter maize
Keep quiet.

Hammed Tajudeen is a graduate of Osun State Polytechnic, Iree with Higher National Diploma (HND) in Mass Communication