The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

manuscript - Christoph von Furer-Haimendorf, Naga notebook six

caption: Tamlu food gennas
medium: notes
ethnicgroup: Konyak
location: Tamlu
date: 11.9.1936
person: Furer-Haimendorf
date: 28.8.1936-26.10.1936
refnum: School of Oriental and African Studies Library, London
text: (77) Wakching 11/9/1936
text: Tamlu
text: Informant: Schoolmaster
text: Food gennas:
text: Goat eaten by men, genna for women.
text: Men eat all monkeys, women don't eat any.
text: Snakes are genna for all. When people meet a python they have to leave behind what they carry with them, even their cloths.
text: Tamlu eats the Burma white-headed laughing thrush. They don't eat the Minivet. (78) They don't eat crows and kaits [kites ?]. They eat all other birds. Tiger is eaten only by the old men who dispose the corpse. Elephant is only eaten by men. There is apparently a less strong prejudice against eating from a tiger's kill, but some men don't eat it. Bear is only eaten by men. All women eat pork. (79) They don't eat the wild cat. Only the old men eat.
text: When a man of the "small" Noklang clan makes a genna and kills a mithan he doesn't eat of the meat, he also eats pork then, but he may eat mithan at other times. The "Great" Noklang clan is not subject to this genna.
text: Dogs are only eaten by men.
text: (80) There are apparently no special food gennas. Small girls (before they have grown their hair long) eat the same things as men do. Children eat of all food which is eaten by adults.
text: Pregnant women don't eat:
text: Catfish (it is also genna for the husband.)
text: the meat of a cow, mithan or buffalo which died by itself.
text: She eats pigs and snared birds.