The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

book : Return to the Naked Nagas (1939;1976)

caption: Chapter Eleven. Sacred Chiefs
caption: beliefs concerning child birth
medium: books
ethnicgroup: Konyak
location: Oting Joboka
person: Furer-Haimendorf
date: 6.1936-6.1937
text: One of the Joboka men wore a neatly plaited gauntlet of red cane, instead of the usual loose cane rings. I wanted to buy it, but he explained that he could not sell the gauntlet, for his pregnant wife had plaited it and in case of a difficult delivery the gauntlet would have to be cut into pieces. It is a general belief among the Nagas that during a difficult delivery all baskets in the house must be cut open and all knots loosened. The idea seems to be that their loosening facilitates in some magical way the loosening of the child from the mother's womb.