Mancala World
Yit Jani
First Description: Richard
Pankhurst, 1971
Cycles: One
Ranks: Two
Sowing: Multiple laps
Region: South Sudan

Yit Jani (literally "game of the slaves") is a mancala game of the Nuer people in South Sudan. Yani or "slaves" is a term which the Nuer apply to the Dinka and this particular variant might have originally come from them. The game was first described by Richard Pankhurst in 1971.

Yit Jani is similar to Anywoli, Ba-awa and Obridjie. It is also closely related to another Nuer game known as Yit Nuri and a mancala game of the Dinka called Ayit.


The rules of the game are said to be identical to those of Yit Nuri except the following:

  • The rows number 13 holes.
  • Each hole contains just two seeds.


Pankhurst, R. 
Gabata and Related Board Games of Ethiopia and the Horn of Africa. In: Ethiopia Observer 1971; 14 (3): 204.


© Ralf Gering
Under the CC by-sa 2.5 license.