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 The Yao


  The Yao call themselves as " Mian", " Bunu", " Lajia", now commonly called Yao. The Yao in Guizhou scatter in Libo, Dushan of south Guizhou and Congjiang, Liping and Rongjiang of southeast Guizhou.

  As a tribe with a long history, the Yao had lived in the provine for over one thousand years. They made a living as nomads, and their farming tools are very simplemainly based on slash and burn agriculture, the situation was not changed until liberation of the new China.

  According to the classification of Yao, there are many branches. As I know and I have been, the White pant Yao in the town of Yaoshan of Libo and Nandan of Guangxi. The Dark blue Yao in the town of Yaolu in Libo. The Red Yao live in the town of Leidong in Liping and Longji of Guangxi.

  With no written form, the Yao use chinese at school and for communicating with the others who are from another tribe. But they speak their own language in their villages and their language belongs to Sino-Tibetan language family, Miao Yao branch, now most of them can speak chinese.

  The Yao believe there are lots of ghosts in the world, and they are polytheists. They particularly pay religious homage to "Panwang", the activity is carried out by the shaman and a pig killed a sacrifice for worshipping "Panwang".This activity is usually held during the "Panwang festival".

  Cross stitch and embroidery are very popular among Yao women, their comtume is colorful and splendid, the main patterns are dragons, cows and horses. The patterns are also different due to different location. In buttonless short jacket and pant reaching below knees, the men in the town of Yaolu, Libo wear long hair, wrap it on head, they also wear silver necklace for festival occasions. However, women keep their long hair wrapped on heads in the shape of spiral, they wear turban , silver necklace, short jacket and pleated skirt. The white pant Yao women in Yaoshan of Libo wear very simple jacket, the jacket is a piece of cloth cut a hole in the middle so as to let the head dress through, then use a ribbon to tie on her waist, thus a jacket is finished making, it will be very cool while dressing up this kind of jacket. The white pant Yao men prefer to wear white pant, the pant is short and tied tightly at the bottom, hence " White pant Yao". This kind of pant is comfortable for working in the fields or climbing mountains. The Yao women in Congjiang mainly dress in short blue jacket, short skirt and leggings. The jacket front is short and the back is long, coverd with a piece of yellow cloth. Two ribbons are worn on the front, embroiderd patterns are docrated both on the jacket front and back.

  Their festivals are different at different villages, the most popular festival is the "Panwang festival". Lusheng, Suona, flute are the musical instruments among the Yao. There are some interesting traditional dances such as hunting dance, bronze drum dance, monkey drum dance and the like. The Yao are particularly fond of hunting.

  The wedding and funeral ceremony of Yao is very special and mysterious. In accordance with the tradition, there are two ways of burial, one is cave burial, the other is the burial in the ground with a grave.
  The Yao village of Dongmeng in Libo is worth a visit, there the women's costume is very beautiful and the granary of the village is skillfully built in order to prevent mice stealing and eating rice.

 

  To make the tour, contact Along
All texts and image by Chen Hualong Email: alongdiscovery@hotmail.com tony6868@163.com
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