The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

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

caption: Chapter Twenty-seven. Return to Nagaland
caption: extremely powerful position of Angs
medium: books
ethnicgroup: Konyaks
location: Tang
person: Furer-Haimendorf
date: 1970
text: Within his own village the Ang used to occupy an extremely powerful position. He could command free labour from all villagers, and some months before my visit the villagers had given three days of free labour to repair the Ang's huge house. All the land of families becoming extinct in the male line fell to the Ang, and he could distribute it among his sons. In theory he could even expel people from their land, and this suggests that the Ang had some residual right on all the land within the boundaries of his village. Until recently he had supreme judicial powers. He could fine people, taking their fields and cattle, and all such fines were his rightful share. Villagers who had committed serious crimes, such as murders within the village, could be expelled and their property confiscated.