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: crime and punishment; death by drowning
medium: books
person: San-wang
ethnicgroup: Wanchu
location: Niaunyu (Niaunu) Tisa R.
person: Furer-Haimendorf/ C.
date: 1969
refnum: with permission from Holt, Rinehart & Winston, New York60:4
text: My informants recalled three cases of execution by drowning which had occurred in Niaunu. One of the criminals was a habitual thief, one had killed several calves belonging to other men and secreted the meat in his house, and the third had been accused of torturing his own daughter because she had had a lover of whom he did not approve. No concrete case of incest was remembered, but the general view was that a couple guilty of brother-sister incest would suffer death by drowning. Chiefs dealt with unfaithful wives in similar manner. Thus San-wang, the father of the present chief of Niaunu, sentenced two of his commoner wives and their lovers of intermediate rank to death, and had all four drowned in the Tisa river. I was told that notwithstanding the license allowed to a chief's aristocratic bride, as long as she resided in her parental home, a wife of great Ang class who was caught in adultery after she had taken up residence in her husband's house might also have been killed by drowning.