villages of Dong ethnic minority nationality are spread
in green valleys, where fir trees are luxuriously green
and rivers surge forward. Their homelands extend from
Liping, Rongjiang, Congjiang, Jinping, Tianzhu, Zhenyuan,
Jianhe county in Guizhou Province to Xinhuang, Tongdao,
Shuining, and other counties in Hunan Province .
The Dong People wear beautiful simple
clothes. The girls will wear flowery scarves on
their heads and similar leg wrappings and shoes
Dongs' villages are built around water and mountains.
Terrace peaks rising one higher than another.
Storied buildings around riverbank or slopes are
called 'diao jiao lou', which is constructed by
fir-wood. A drum tower is specific, and every
village has one or more. The drum tower is used
to have a meeting or entertainment, especially
on festival, the Dongs' people gather there to
sing and dance. Design in shape of birds, flowers,
dragon and phoenix show grandeur and majesty,
which make tower is greatly outstanding.
Kinds of bridges are main drag for traffic. Wind-and-Ring
bridges is famous for its character construct
and high skill. Chengyang Wind and Ring Bridge
is most famous. It is 165 meters long and 10 meters
wide,15 to 20 high above; and tile roof on the
bridge. Five kiosks are built in shape of multi-angle
tower; handrail and pews are set on the bridge.
Many tenons in holes link up none a nail the miraculous
construction, which is Dongs' masterpiece.
Do not argue on going first on his way.
Do not get money for transition.
Do not enter a room when a baby is born.
Do not support chopsticks on bowls after a meal.
Do not enter a woman's bedroom.
Do not cross legs when sitting and do get stools
leaning on walls
Shell Festival: Flowery shell festival is Dong
nationality's traditional festival, a kind of
athletic sports on the 3rd of the 3rd lunar month.
It is said that the festival originates from a
gathering 100 years ago. In order to make it more
animated, villages set 3 iron shells, the first
tied to a ring with red ribbon. When the shell
is shot and the ring fell, villagers strive to
get the ring. The one who gets the ring will get
the first prize, and so on.
Today, a village as a unit will form a team which
carries a big gun, prizes and gifts to go around
the market or the town and then shool three shells.
The first implies having a flourishing population,
the second a good fortune and the third a bumper
harvest. The shell fodder ignites the shell and
the iron ring shoots to the sky. Team members
stare at the ring and try to catch it. When it
is grabbed, the team member will pass it onto
another member or get out of the circle. That
is the victory. It is repeated three times. After
the game, the lads and lasses gather together
to dance and play the reed-pipe wind instrument.
At night, campfires are here and there: young
people perform Dong drama and sing in antiphonal
style freely. Cheers and laughs are everywhere.
Entertainment: Yueye and Road-blocking
Dong's dialect, Yueye means that the collective go out
to be guests, which is the Dong's tradition for sociable
activities. Road-blocking song is for Dong nationality
to meet or see off guests. The length of the time for
Yueye depends on contents. Generally speaking, one person
represents one family. Led by the most distinctive of
the village, the group will go to the friendly village
for a visit. When the guests from Village A come near
village b, the hosts from Village B must meet them at
the entrance while making blockade on the way with farm
tools or household things. Horse team will ask questions
by singing and the guest team will answer win songs.
When the hosts get the right answer, they will remove
the blockade. If the answer is wrong, all the blockades
to let in the guests to take part in the rich friendly
activities such as performing Dong play, Dong songs,
dragon and lion dance, playing reed-pipe wind instrument.
At the end, hosts will see off the guests and sing blocking-road
songs again to persuade them to stay on. Both teams
show their sorrow of parting and also their friendship
as fellow countrymen.
Embroidery, weave, carve, paper-cut
and paper chisel are with vivid character. Bamboo
and wood weave produces are elegant and useful
with high value.
Poesy is winning hearts. The poesy
narrate original of the world, describe heroes
sing high prize of the truly love.
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