The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

published - extracts from 'Descriptive Ethnography of Bengal' on Nagas by E.T. Dalton

caption: Section 6. The Nagas of Upper Asam
caption: marriages: late age at marriage; groom service; monogamy; good treatment of wives
medium: articles
person: Dalton/ E.T.
date: 1872
text: Marriages are contracted comparatively late in life. This was the necessary consequence of the condition that it must not take place till the candidate for a bride could present her with a gory token of his love; but there is also a price on the young lady, and the youth unable to pay often serves like Jacob for his wife, and at the end of his servitude is in like manner provided and set up by his father-in-law. The Nagas confine themselves to one wife, who has to work hard, but is otherwise well treated. They participate with their husbands in all festivities and social amusements.