The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

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

caption: Chapter Four. Religious Beliefs and Practices
caption: Gawang disapproves of selling, buying, and killing of slaves
medium: books
ethnicgroup: Konyak
location: Wakching
person: Furer-Haimendorf/ C.
date: 1969
refnum: with permission from Holt, Rinehart & Winston, New York101:3
text: It is a matter of some surprise that Gawang was believed to disapprove of certain customs well established in Naga society. We have seen that Konyaks, though not keeping slaves themselves, occasionally bought slaves and killed them in order to gain head trophies, but some old men of Wakching spoke with great indignation of the villages to the east, where people used "to sell even their own children and kinsmen into slavery." My informants expressed horror at this practice, and emphasized that Gawang became very angry at the selling and killing of slaves and punished the culprits in this life. "Whoever sells a man into slavery or kills such a slave will die early and Gawang will not give him a son to continue his line."