Pouring libation is one of the oldest and favorite rituals practiced in most every village most every day—and many times at that. Libation is a prayer to the gods and ancestors marking an event. Such events may include the beginning of an activity—such as a meeting of chiefs, a special occasion—such as the birth of a child, or simply receiving visitors into the house. Even traditional courts run by the chiefs and elders typically end a case by pouring libation.

Libation usually entails the pouring of palm wine or akpeteshi (the potent local gin also known as “homeboy” or “kill me quick”) on to the ground during the prayer. The prayer begins by invoking various gods and ancestors. The number of ancestors called depends upon the magnitude of the occasion, and these predecessors may date back two centuries. After the summation the actual prayer will begin. The speaker will put the occasion into context by recounting the events that lead up to the occasion. The speaker will reveal their knowledge of Ewe philosophy during this part. Lastly, the final blessing asks for wealth, good health, and peace. The speaker will pour the remaining drink on the ground and his assistant will go around the circle and offer a calabash or shot to everyone present.

A Libation to Adaklu Mountain for Blessings in the Ecotourism Project

This libation was poured on the day the ecotourism project officially began after making a transaction with the first tourists.


Prosper Agbo, the Adaklu Montain Tourism Committee member in charge of mobilizing the town for community projects, drinks a calabash of palm wine after the libation in poured

Adaklu Mountain Tourism Committee standing at the visitor's center with Adaklu Mountain in the backgraound