The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

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

caption: Chapter Twenty-one. Head-Hunting Rites
caption: the great head-hunting dance described in detail
medium: books
ethnicgroup: Konyak
location: Wakching
person: Furer-Haimendorf
date: 6.1936-6.1937
text: It is not until late in the afternoon that the great head-hunting dance begins, when every member of the morung, from the oldest men to the six-year-old boys, takes part. The men between forty and fifty, who have known the old days, and have captured heads in their youth, proudly put on their head-dresses with the curved horns, carved from the horns of buffaloes. Tassels of long human hair wave from the tips, and in between are fastened masses of different ornaments. Here is plenty of scope for individuality; one (173) man has fixed two huge hornbill beaks between his horns; another wears a white painted monkey skull.