Through Central Borneo An Account Of Two Years' Travel In The Land Of The Head-Hunters Between The Years 1913 And 1917 By Carl Lumholtz




























































 -  At Ball the coffin was found to be ready and was
taken on board. It had been well-made, but - Page 360
Through Central Borneo An Account Of Two Years' Travel In The Land Of The Head-Hunters Between The Years 1913 And 1917 By Carl Lumholtz - Page 360 of 489 - First - Home

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At Ball The Coffin Was Found To Be Ready And Was Taken On Board.

It had been well-made, but the colours were mostly, if not all, obtained from the trader and came off easily, which was somewhat disappointing.

It seemed smaller than the original, though the makers insisted that it was quite similar and challenged me to go and see the one they had copied, which was in the vicinity, behind the kampong.

Here I saw a new and somewhat striking arrangement for the disposition of the dead. A small white house contained several coffins guarded by seven kapatongs of medium size, which stood in a row outside, with the lower part of their legs and bodies wrapped in mats. The skull of a water-buffalo and many pigs' jaws hung near by. Two tall memorial staffs, called pantars, had been erected, but instead of the wooden image of the great hornbill which usually adorns the top, the Dutch flag presented itself to view. Appearing beautiful to the Dayaks it had been substituted for the bird. The all-important second funeral having been celebrated, the dead occupied their final resting place.

We spent the night at a large kampong where there was a fine, straightforward kapala who appeared at a disadvantage only when, with intent to please me, he wore clothes, but from whom I gained valuable information. He also had a sense of humour, and next day when our coffin was carried ashore, in order that I might be enlightened in regard to the significance of its decorations, he laughed heartily and exclaimed in astonishment at the sight.

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