Wikimanqala:Featured article/ week 35
The counters employed in mancala games are usually called seeds. These can be true seeds from plants, but also cowries, pebbles or dung balls, while in many modern games glass stones or plastic pieces are used.
The symbolic meaning depends on the societal background of the game. In agricultural societies the counters usually stand for the seeds used to till a field. A number of seeds which is captured, e.g. two or three in oware or two, four and six in the Bohnenspiel, is a ripe fruit that is harvested. In societies which are based on fishing the seeds can mean fish. In pastoral societies the counters are considered to be cattle. In general, the symbolic meaning is often associated with fertility. [ + ]