The town crier tells all the men in Umuofia to meet in the marketplace in the morning. When they do, they find out that a Umuofian woman was murdered while she was in Mbaino.
The men determine that Mbaino must offer a young man and a virgin as compensation for the woman that was killed, or they will declare war.
This is important in the novel because the young boy they recieve as compensation is Ikemefuna, who Okonkwo looks after as a son for several years. However, he ultimately sacrafices Ikemefuna when an oracle says it is necessary. He participates in the sacrafice for fear of being considered unmanly by his fellow men.