Nung Ethnic Group – Vietnamese Peoples

Nung ethnic minority in Vietnam

The Nung ethnic have the same cognition with ethnic Tay of Vietnam and China’s Zhuang. The Nung people live mainly in the northern provinces of Lang Son, Cao Bang, Thai Nguyen, Bac Can, Bac Giang, and Tuyen Quang. With about 1 million people, the Nung rank 7th in the largest ethnic groups in Viet Nam. Nung’s language is in the same language family as the Thai people.

Nung people in Vietnam
Nung people in Vietnam

Customs & Habits of Nung People

Although there are many different branches the life and activities of the Nung ethnic groups are the same. The Nung often live in small villages. Their houses can be built in flat on the ground or on stilts (to prevent them from floods, snakes, and wild animals, etc.) and are made of wood with thatch or tile roofs. A typical home has two-part, one for living activities and the other for work and worship.

Inside the house of Nung people
Inside the house of Nung people

We can’t talk about the house of the Nung without mentioning “home defense”. This is the combination between the house on the ground and the stilts house. The brick wall is very thick (40-60cm) to bullet-proof. On the wall is also pierced with crenelated. There is also a battle bunker. This house type is only available in Lang Son near the northern border to prevent thefts.

Cultures of Nung People

The Nung has a rich folk culture with the echo of mountains and forests. “ sli” is singing tunes of the ethnic Nung, this tune leaves an unforgettable impression for visitors. “Then” is the most famous folk song. The performances “Then” make people infatuated. The famous festival which attracts the attention of many people of all ages is called festival “Lung tung” on lunar January every year.

Khau nhuc-a special dish of Nung people
Khau nhuc – a special dish of Nung people

The Nung likes to eat fried pork fat dishes. This is the unique dish and is respected as the luxury dish is “Khau nhuc”. During the holidays, the Nung people often make cakes from rice and drink wine by spoons.

Costumes of Nung Ethnic Group

With skillful hands, the Nung ethnic women have made themselves the indigo-dyed cloth costume, purple. The Nung’s traditional costume is quite simple and is often made from self-dyed fabrics. Although there are no embroidery or decorations in this, in conclusion, the Nung’s costume is very harmonious. Men wear shirts with standing collars, which have cloth buttons. Women wear long shirts with 5 panels, buttoned up under the right arm.

Economy Features of Nung Ethnic Group

The Nung are known as the best horticulturalists in all of Vietnam people. They cultivate in milpas, terraced fields, mainly planting water rice, maize, and soybean. In addition, star aniseed is the most valuable industrial tree of the Nung. Because of the terrain and mountainous climate, the Nung developed of fruit trees such as persimmon, mandarin, custard-apple.  As residents of ancient agriculture the Nung feed buffalo, cow, and horse to plow the land. With the Nung Din in Ha Giang, the Nung Giang in Cao Bang horse is regarded as fortune and raised elaborately.

Pigs and poultry are raised a lot and are quite common in ethnic Nung. Since in most of the rituals of daily life are used pigs, chickens, and ducks. Also, ethnic Nung also raising fish and bee. The Nung currently maintains brocade, indigo dyeing, weaving, forging (knife, hammer assorted rudimentary farm equipment), making Do paper, incenses.