The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

manuscript - Christoph von Furer-Haimendorf, Naga diary four

caption: girls singing and dancing - the O-ya-bu or Spring festival
medium: diaries
ethnicgroup: Konyak
location: Longkhai
date: 23.2.1937
person: Furer-Haimendorf
date: 12.2.1937-31.3.1937
note: translated from german by Dr Ruth Barnes
person: School of Oriental and African Studies Library, London
text: The sun has already long since disappeared behind the clouds again when finally the girls start their dance on the platform in front of the Ang house. It is a dance where they hold hands and move closely together counter-clockwise in tiny steps, very very slowly and accompanied by a rather melancholy song. More important than the movement to the side is the redistribution of weight from one leg to the other accompanied by a slight bending of the knees and sometimes by a stomping which, however, is not very strong. The head is bent down which gives the impression of dancing full of thought and with great concentration. (65) The song is quite monotonous and the level of voice is remarkably low. With the best of intentions one cannot speak of light girl's voices.