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: use of enamel plate edges for decoration
medium: notes
ethnicgroup: Yimchungr
location: Mokokchung
person: Archer/ W.G.
date: 1946-1948
refnum: 16:25
text: The attractive insignia of the Yimchungr warrior is a cut down enamel soup plate. With its shiny white surface it acts as a foil to the white cowrie belt and shell ear ornaments. Only the curved rims and part of the bowl are used and these are cut to rather less than semi-circle. The enamel plate is then worn rather like a clergyman's dog-collar. Only a Yimchungr who has taken a head, a finger or a toe is entitled to wear this impressive badge. I was told that the use of cut down enamel plates dates from about the 1910's. The plates are bought in bazaars such as Mokokchung and are cut down by the Yimchungr themselves. Two little holes are bored in each side, and the plate is worn like a huge pendant.