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Friday, February 23, 2018
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Meiteis

Physical Features | Dress & Ornaments | Houses | Profession | Food | Religion | Games


Physical Features

 
The Meiteis are mainly populating the main valley. Men are muscular and stout with well developed chest and hard limbs. They possess enormous stamina and muscular power. The improvised Mongol features distinguish them from other Mongolian races. Hairs are generally coarse and black. Very few grow beard and  moustache is not in fashion. The women are beautiful with improved Mongol features like slightly sharp facial features. Meitei women can be easily distinguished from a hill woman. The instant identification is the improvisation in the eye sockets of the flatness of  the nose, the thickness of the lips and the progression of the cheeks. The complexion varies from dark to fair but in general the woman are either fair wheatish or dark. The hair growth of the women is luxuriant. Some unmarried girls prefer to bob their hair and across the forehead cut in circle. Some others keep long hair, parted at the centre and combed backward.

Dress and Ornaments

 The dress of a man is white Kurta, dhoti and pagari (old man). Their dresses are distinct and specific for particular ceremonial occasions. The woolen or endi or silk shawl is wrapped round the body over the white Kurta and dhoti. No other dress is allowed on ceremonial occasions. Pants, shirts and coat are also common especially with young and office-goers. The women dress themselves with choli  to cover the upper portion of the body and a skirt type garment called 'Fanek' which is wrapped around the waist up to the ankles. Under Fanek no portion of legs is kept bare. It is tied at the waist by a simple adjusting knot by arranging the wrapping ends of the cloth. It is not adjusted with the help of a belt .The knot can be united easily at any time to adjust the skirt properly.

A cotton chadar is  wrapped around the upper body. On certain ceremonial occasions the white fanek and white chadar are worn and on some other occasions the pink coloured Fanek and chadar are felt essential. The craze for imported  skirt is very common in unmarried young girls. They wear Knee-long  modern skirts. These skirts do not serve the purpose of covering the cylindrical calves as is done with the fanek. Another old  style of wearing the fanek is that the cloth is folded round the body, at bust and on their back and it goes under the armpits over the breast keeping their portion of body upward  the neck bare, it is kept in position by a knot at the side of the body. 

Women are fond of gold ornaments. The possession of gold is considered as the sign of richness. Tattooing is not done in Manipur.


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