The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

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

caption: Chapter Two. The Social Structure and its Units
caption: custom of Ang's brides sleeping with others ; paternity
medium: books
ethnicgroup: Wanchu
location: Niaunyu (Niaunu)
person: Furer-Haimendorf/ C.
date: 1969
refnum: with permission from Holt, Rinehart & Winston, New York58:4
text: Yet, there was a custom which seemed to make nonsense of the great Angs' claim to the purity of their line. A chief's bride of equal status conformed to the general custom and did not move into her husband's house after the marriage rites, but remained in her parental village, paying occasional visits to her husband. As long as she resided in her natal village, she was allowed to associate with the boys of her own village, and her husband could neither prevent her from having extramarital adventures nor had he any redress if she became pregnant from a man of nonaristocratic status. Such paternity received no social recognition; any child born to a great Ang woman married to a great Ang was considered to be of great Ang rank. The period of a young wife's untrammeled license lasted only as long as she remained in her parents' home; once she resided permanently with her husband, any intrigue with another man was punished as adultery.