The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

manuscript - Christoph von Furer-Haimendorf, Naga diary four

caption: feasts of merit abandoned
medium: diaries
ethnicgroup: Konyak
location: Namsang
date: 19.3.1937
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: Formerly feasts of merit were supposedly common, like in Tamlu. For these rich men sacrificed mithans in front of their houses and set up forked posts. These people then also gained the right to decorate their gables with crossed sticks. These mithan sacrifices however did not bring them luck and when a whole group of men (200) died soon after such a feast of merit, the custom was abandoned and nowadays mithan are killed only in the forest outside the village unless when they are sacrificed for the rebuilding of a morung. Cattle are still slaughtered near the houses of rich men but such sacrifices do not grant the right to special gable decorations and for them no forked posts are set up.