The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

book : 'Konyak Nagas' by Christoph von Furer-Haimendorf, (1969)

caption: Chapter One. The Material Background
caption: ceremonial dress, men's headgear
medium: books
ethnicgroup: Konyak
person: Furer-Haimendorf/ C.
date: 1969
refnum: with permission from Holt, Rinehart & Winston, New York13:3
text: Of a different order from the items of everyday dress was the apparel proper for ceremonial occasions. On feast days the boys and men far outshone the women in the variety and splendor of their attire, graded according to their achievements in the field of head-hunting. While at the time of the annual spring festival all males, from small boys to white-haired grandfathers, wore some sort of headgear, only head-takers were entitled to the more magnificent headdresses. Most common were conical hats plaited of red cane and yellow orchid stalks, crested with red goat's hair and surmounted by a few tail feathers of the great Indian hornbill. Head-takers garnished such hats with flat horns carved from buffalo horn and tassels made of human hair. Boar's tusks, monkey skulls, and hornbill beaks were other favorite embellishments, and there was great scope for ingenuity and individual fantasy.