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Folk ways of the Achang people

Updated: 2014-12-30 09:12:52

( cultural-china.com )

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The Achang live in square houses made of wood or bricks, of two floors. The upper floor is the people's living area, and the lower one, the place to keep their animals and agricultural tools. Their villages have houses orderly arranged.

They are very famous blacksmiths, it is said that they began their forges in the 14th century, in the region of Husa, when the blacksmiths of the Chinese army that was garrisoned in that area, taught to them. In every village the blacksmiths tradition have been passed from a generation to another. Their knives and tools are exported to many regions.

Formerly they lived in a matriarchy, but many centuries ago their society changed to a patriarchal one, with clans comprised of several families.

The dress of the Achang is very sophisticated and shows important differences from one place to other. The men always wear a machete. The women dress in a different way if they are single or married; the married ones wear in the main festivals some big turbans, sometimes adorned with silver.

The funerals take place in auspicious days, without anything metallic in the body, since it can affect to their reincarnation. People believe that Yama, the God of the Hells, allows the souls to return to the earth in lunar July 1st. Those who die for infectious illness are incinerated.

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