The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

published - extracts from 'Account of the valley of Munnipore and of the Hill Tribes' by Major W. McCulloch

caption: laziness; smoking
medium: articles
person: Stewart/ Lt.
ethnicgroup: KookieKhongjai
person: McCulloch/ Major W.
date: 1858
refnum: from: Selections from the Records of the Government of India, No. 27 (Calcutta) 1859
text: The men like the Nagas are inclined to be lazy, though not to such an extent as that tribe. They love to sit on high platforms raised for the purpose in their villages and pass the day in conversation and smoking. Men, women, and children all smoke to the greatest excess. A Kookie is hardly ever seen without a pipe in his mouth, and one of his few means of calculating time and distance is by the number of pipes he smokes. The men smoke a pipe, the bowl of which is either made of brass, rudely ornamented, or of the end of a small bamboo tube, a reed (it is like a reed but is a bamboo) being let in near the knot as a mouthpiece. The women have a bowl with water in it attached to their pipes, and the smoke in passing through (61) impregnates the water with its fumes. This fumigated water is filled into little bamboo tubes, and other reservoirs in which it is carried about by the men, who occasionally sip of it retaining it in the mouth for some time before spitting it out again, and on meeting a friend, hand it to him as a mark of courtesy. They also chew tobacco in great quantities.