The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

manuscript - Christoph von Furer-Haimendorf, Naga diary one

caption: description of Wanching and morung buildings and gong houses
medium: diaries
ethnicgroup: Konyak
location: Wanching
date: 25.8.1936
person: Furer-Haimendorf
date: 2.6.1936-11.7.1936
note: translated from german by Dr Ruth Barnes
person: School of Oriental and African Studies Library, London
text: We now continue our walk around the village. Wanching is built on a far more rugged terrain than Wakching and one has to climb up and down steps all of the time. Naturally the platforms, too, often have to stand high above the steeply descending ground. (223) The morungs too are influenced in their architecture by the ground's condition. From the open front room where the hearths are one steps down into the central room with the sleeping compartments and this in itself is more or less declining. Then it goes down again along a slanting tree trunk with steps cut in it to the semi-circular platform. Both in the Balang and the Bala morung, by the way, one of these step ladders leads to the ground from an opening in this platform. The morungs are further distinguished from those of Wakching through their generous paintings. All posts, the side walls, and the seating, and pounding boards, and the hollow gong are painted red, black and white. The red is made from red sorrel, the black from charcoal and the white is chalk. Only one morung has a separate house for the gong. In the others it stands at one side of the front room.