The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

typescript tour diary of W.G. Archer, S.D.O. Mokokchung 1947

caption: visit to Khonoma
caption: field houses
medium: tours
location: Khonoma
date: 31.12.1946
person: Archer/ W.G.
date: 31.12.1946-14.2.1947
seealso: 'Angami Nagas', Hutton p. 53
text: Dotted through the fields are little thatched huts where in bad weather men and women keep their clothes and food and eat their meals. Close to one of them a group of men and women were at work, busily digging the clods. Since the plough is unknown, the soil is broken up and hemmed (sic) with a spade and women as well as men labour at the digging.
text: Since it was the end of December all the paddy had been cut and the straw was standing in little stooks. Only the ears are cut during the reaping, the straw being left to stand and a bunch of stalks being loosely tied together at the top. These are all got in later.
text: In a number of fields, bamboo stakes armed at the top with little slats pointing four ways were mounting lonely guard. I was told that all these fields had yielded bumper crops and the stakes were erected to distract attention and avoid inauspicious praise. Hutton also refers to their erection at times of house building and adds that they are intended to keep off evil spirits ('Angami Nagas', p. 53).