The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

manuscript notes made by W.G. Archer between 1946 & 1948, and miscellaneous papers and letters

caption: Tepong morung carving, Wakching
medium: notes
person: Tepong morung
location: Wakching
person: Archer/ W.G.
date: 1946-1948
refnum: 4:38
text: 1. Tepong morung - a huge hall looking east over the hillsides - thick, palm leaf thatch coming almost to the ground with a tasselled skirt. SKETCH
text: A. Central pillar - a tiger coming down cross-board - frieze - monkeys catching a tiger by tail - monkeys catching a tiger by head. 2 wooden heads with shaggy straw 'skirts' hanging from roof - enormous low benches
text: B. door carved with flying fortress - put in in 1946 - no ritual.
text: C. Cross-board - a row of monkeys holding hands and catching a tiger by the nose. (Apart from the long swinging arms, like humans eg. vagina shown). The figures shown as standing on the board with bent knees - effect of springing out of the plane. A swinging zigzag line connect up all the forms - a great sense of surging swing - the forms bounding along the board. The tiger is shown coming down the post 'so that it can be seen better. You tell it by its head'.
text: The inner hall is so dark that none of the sculpture can be seen ie. the function of the sculpture is not entirely to be seen, one of its functions is simply to exist - to be in the morung. The carvings have the same 'magical' effect whether they are seen or not.