The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

manuscript - Christoph von Furer-Haimendorf notebook ten

caption: ceremony of boys entering morung
medium: notes
ethnicgroup: Konyak
location: Oting
date: 4.3.1937
person: Furer-Haimendorf
date: 24.2.1937-11.4.1937
person: School of Oriental and African Studies Library, London
text: (57) Oting 4/3/1937
text: Inf. Chingai. Gaonbura of Long-shai
text: The Anakbu, the ceremony of the boys entering the morung, was held at the beginning of the cold weather, about November. Only an even number of boys can enter the morung at one time, two or four or six and so on. The fathers of the boys for whom the genna is made must feast the whole village. The boys are about 15. On the evening of the same day (the Anakbu), which is genna, the boys who are to be initiated come together in front of the Ang's house. They put on (58) ceremonial dress and two and two run towards each other clashing their shields when meeting. This is done six times. This clashing of shields is repeated the two following days, in the morning, and midday, and in the evening, six times every time. Their fathers provide pigs or cows on that day, which are killed by the Benba. On the fourth day the boys go fishing and the boy who first catches a fish will first marry. At the Oyabu of that year (resp. the next calendar year) they enter the morung. During the three days mentioned they must go to the village spring in the early morning and wash themselves. (59) They are not allowed to take any cloth with them, as cold as it may be. The Benba receives a part of the hindquarters of the pigs.