The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

manuscript - Christoph von Furer-Haimendorf, Naga diary five

caption: omens to choose fields to plant
medium: diaries
ethnicgroup: Konyak
location: Wakching
date: 7.4.1937
person: Furer-Haimendorf
date: 1.4.1937-26.6.1937
note: translated from german by Dr Ruth Barnes
person: School of Oriental and African Studies Library, London
text: It is known well in advance where the new fields will be set up for the next year and now already people know that in the coming year they will clear along the slope of a mountain ridge which branches off from the main ridge between Wakching and Wanching. Nevertheless the Ang and Neangbas take an omen about the new clearing, first in the Ang's house and then once more in the jungle on a field which belongs to the Ang. However if the result is not favourable the clearing plans are not altered. Wakching cultivates in one block but within such a block as for example the present new fields not each one but only about half of the fields are cleared. The other half's turn will come after seven or eight years (25) when the same slope is used again. So the fields lie fallow for about 14 to 16 years.