Fürer-Haimendorf, Christoph von, 1909-. The Sherpas of Nepal: Buddhist highlanders

Table of Contents

Publication Information

1 Environment And Economy

Types Of Settlement


The Introduction Of The Potato

Animal Husbandry



2 An Open Society

The Clan As Ritual Unit

Immigrants From Tibet

An Underprivileged Class

Alien Elements In Sherpa Society

3 The Pattern Of Family Life

Pre-marital Relations

Avenues To Marriage: Sodene

Avenues To Marriage: Dem-chang

The Wedding Rite: Zendi Or Gyen-kutop

Substitutes For The Wedding Rite

The Rights And Obligations Of Spouses

Polyandrous And Polygynous Marriages

The Dissolution Of A Marriage By Divorce Or Death

The Rôle Of A Married-in Son-in-law (maksu)

The Husband-wife Relationship

Parent-child Relationship

The Illegitimate Child (themba)

Relations Between Kinsfolk

Property Rights And Inheritance

4 Village Organization

The Naua Or Village Guardians

Shingo Naua Or Forest Guards

Chorumba And Chorpen: The Guardians Of The Village Temple

Civic Duties By Rotation

Collectors Of Land Revenue: The Pembu

5 Monastic Institutions And Priesthood

The Composition Of Monastic Communities

Monastic Vows And Monastery Organization

Monastic Routine In Tengboche

Reincarnate Lamas And Laymen

The Village Clergy

Village Temples

6 The Practice Of Religion

Seasonal Rites

The Banishment Of Evil Spirits

The Rite Of Protecting The Village Land

Niungne—the Rite To Obtain Forgiveness Of Sins

Dumje—the Great Festival Of The Village Temple

Yer-chang: The Rite Of Summer

Mani-rimdu—a Monastery Feast Of Ritual Dances

Rites Of Death

7 The Control Of Invisible Forces

Rites Of Exorcism

Spirit-media And Soothsayers

Witches (pem)

Malignant Ghosts (norpa)

Serpent Or Water-spirits (lu)


8 Values And Moral Concepts

Merit And Sin

The Idea Of The Good Life

Publication Information

Paragraph Subjects (OCM)

Publication Information


Title: The Sherpas of Nepal: Buddhist highlanders

Published By: London: John Murray, 1964. xx, 298 p.: ill., maps

By line: [by] Christoph von Fürer-Haimendorf

HRAF Publication Information: New Haven, Conn.: HRAF, 2004. Computer File

Culture: Sherpa (AK06)

Subjects: Pastoral activities (233); Tillage (241); Production and supply (433); Ethnic stratification (563); Arranging a marriage (584); Nuptials (585); Lineages (613); Clans (614); Local officials (624); Shamans and psychotherapists (756); Eschatology (775); Spirits and gods (776); Prayers and sacrifices (782); Prophets and ascetics (792); Congregations (794); Organized ceremonial (796); Illegitimacy (848);

Abstract: This monograph provides an excellent background study of the ethnography of the Sherpas of the region of Khumbu, located at the foot of Mt. Everest in Nepal. Although emphasis is placed on Sherpa religion, especially on the monastic life, there are also abundant data on the geography and economy of the region, kinship and social organization, family life, the village political organization, and the values and moral concepts of the people. The author, accompanied by his wife, gathered the information for this study during several field trips to the area in the period of 1953-1962. This information was further supplemented with data provided by Sherpa informants, particularly Dorje Ngungdu of Khumjung.

Document Number: 1

Document ID: ak06-001

Document Type: Monograph

Language: English

Field Date: 1953-1962

Evaluation: Ethnologist-5

Analyst: John Beierle ; 1990

Coverage Date: not specified

Coverage Place: Scattered throughout Nepal, but mainly in southeastern Nepal in the Khumbu region, near Mt. Everest - especially villages of Khumjung and Kunde

LCSH: Sherpa (Nepalese people)


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