The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

book : Return to the Naked Nagas (1939;1976)

caption: Chapter Twenty-one. Head-Hunting Rites
caption: preparations for later dances, ceremonial costumes
medium: books
ethnicgroup: Konyak
location: Wakching
person: Furer-Haimendorf
date: 6.1936-6.1937
text: The weeks before this final feast are full of preparations. In threes and fours the young men visit the neighbouring villages. They must barter pigs for the forthcoming feast, and those who have not inherited their ceremonial dress from their fathers must make haste either to buy or to prepare the necessary ornaments. Much that belongs to the dress of a man of head-hunting rank is not manufactured in Wakching, and the villages in the east, who sell plaited dance-hats with goat's hair plumes, ceremonial spears and dao handles, and a special kind of dance-basket experience a period of roaring trade. But money must be found for these transactions, and the Wakching people carry their pan leaves and plaited mats to the markets of the plains.