The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

manuscript - Christoph von Furer-Haimendorf, Naga diary four

caption: girls morung described ; sexual intercourse
medium: diaries
ethnicgroup: Konyak
location: Chingtang (Chintang)
date: 28.3.1937
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: (246) Afterwards he shows me the "girls' morung", Yo, in the Ang house. It is a slightly larger room with a machan where the girls sit and sing and with tiny compartments which have only a small opening as an entrance. Each compartment contains a narrow, and it seems to me, very short platform, but Shankok assures me that two can find enough room there, and can lie down to stretch out. The compartments are sealed off like this so that the girls can defend themselves against unwanted suitors. Nevertheless it is supposed to happen that young men come in in the darkness and without saying a word they have intercourse with a girl and disappear without having been recognised. But this does not mean that the girl has been unwilling as there are always enough people nearby to prevent a rape. But in any case it is supposed to happen that girls become pregnant and do not know who they have been sleeping with. Furthermore Shankok says that the Thepong men have a kind of right to sleep with the girls of Chingtang and that the Chingtang men have to give them the right of way. (147) That is because Chingtang is Wakching's "son", and has been defeated in war. There is no corresponding right for the Chingtang men when they visit Wakching, but instead they have to pay a fine if they are caught during such adventures.