The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

manuscript - Christoph von Furer-Haimendorf, Naga diary five

caption: story of shaming of daughter of Ang of Sheangha and the consequences
medium: diaries
ethnicgroup: Konyak
location: Wakching
date: 15.5.1937
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: Recently one of the Ang daughters from Sheang-ha went to Tang-niu, the village her mother had come from, to marry the Ang of Tang-niu's son but he declared that he did not want the marriage and did not even allow the people of Sheangha to spend a single night in Tang-niu, nor did he provide any kind of hospitality. They did not even get a drink of water. His father, the old Ang, did not agree with this behaviour and tried to persuade his son not to shame the Sheangha girl in this manner as she was the daughter of an Ang woman from the chieftain's house in Tang-niu, but the young Ang was unrelenting and said Sheangha was a hostile village and the daughter of its Ang had no business being in Tang-niu. He sent the Sheangha people back without having offered them betel or a drink.
text: The Ang's daughter turned back crying and when she was outside the village (151) she pulled off her apron and shook it towards the village. To this she uttered curses, "The men of Sheangha will come and take your heads. May they capture many heads and you not a single one. My brothers will revenge me and will take your heads to Sheangha". Indeed the men of Sheangha went out to war against Tang-niu again and captured many heads while the Tang-niu people took only a few. The two villages are still at war and the success is usually on Sheangha's side. The rejected Ang's daughter in the meanwhile married an Ang of Longwa, a village Sheangha also is at war with, but this is not uncommon. Alliances are frequently made even between hostile Ang houses. Sheangha seems to be a village on the up. It is very big and although so far it has only three 'sons', it represents a significant power and at the moment it is at war with six villages without being under pressure.