Question-Answer game “Shatraitrai Gonthaitrai”

“Shatraitrai Gonthaitrai” is a children’s quiz game narrating a series of events that starts from the sky and includes questioning every object identified in every answer until the object reaches the royal house.

The children question the stars and the weaving models hanging from above and ask where the long bamboo has gone. It has become a fence. Then the fence is questioned, and it’s taken up by the moon, which is then questioned. where’s the moon gone. It picks the hen and the hen is questioned, then the vulture picks it to eat, then the vulture is questioned, then it is killed by a mat while flying, and then the mat is questioned. Then the mat is burned, and then the fire is questioned, which is extinguished by water. So, water is questioned, and it’s emptied by the yak. Finally, the yak is questioned, and it sneaks into the new building of the king. So, the question starts from the stars, and then the cultural items related to Dimasas, that is, “gonthai”, bamboo, fence, moon, hen, vulture, mat, fire, water, yak, and then the king. Most of the oral games have the king mentioned as the king is above of all these cultural items.


Cultural Narrative: 

The full translation of the question-answer or quiz game is given here with word to word gloss and free translation:

Shatraitrai Gonthaitrai

Stars and all (Weaving model) and all

‘Stars and Gonthais!’

Gonthmai glau bra thangkha?

a kind of bamboo long where gone

‘Where has the long bamboo gone?’

Bari shukha.

fence made

‘Itbecame a fence!’

Bari bra thangkha?

fence where gone 

‘Where has the fence gone?’

Purnima jikha.

full moon eaten

‘Full moon had it all’.

Purnima bra thangkha?

full moon where gone

‘Where has the full moon gone?’

Purnima daono khonjikha.

full moon hen pick eat up

‘full moon picked the hen’.

Daono bra thangkha?

hen where gone

‘Where has the hen gone?’

Daono daoling kheplangkha.

hen vulture snap become

‘The hen got snapped up by the vulture’.

Daoling bra thangkha?

vulture where gone

‘Where did the vulture go?’

Yamjang sathaikha

with mat got killed

‘It got killed with the mat’.

Yam bra thangkha?

mat where gone

‘Where has the mat gone?’

Waijang wauthaikha.

with fire burned

‘It was burned with fire’.

Wai bra thangkha?

fire where gone

‘Where has the fire gone?’

Dijang lukhlaikha.

with water poured down

‘It was splashed with water’.

Di bra thangkha?

ater where gone

‘Where has the water gone?’

Mithang sropkha.

Yak slurped (it all)

‘The yak slurped it all’.

Mithang bra thangkha?

yak where gone

‘Where has the yak gone?’

Rajani nodain jaindahi grum baishenghikha.

King’s new house after shifting groom sound crossed over (inside)

‘It bumped into the new house of the king’.

Shipra Barman
Location Description: 

Village : Kanakpur, Cachar, Assam

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