Adi Tribe | Abar Tribe


Adi Tribe | Abar Tribe

Adi Tribe Abar Tribe

Adi Tribe | Abar Tribe

Adi Tribe Abar Tribe

Adi Tribe | Abar Tribe


India is a vast land where almost all the tribes and subtribes of people of Asia have got their way to life from time immemorial. Among so many, the Adi tribe or Abor Tribe is one.  It is a populous group of indigenous people in Arunachal Pradesh, India. A few thousand Adi people live in the Tibet Autonomous Region (formerly Tibet). They are called Loba, together with the Nishi, Na, Galo, Mishmi people and Tagin people. Adi Tribe | Abar Tribe


They live in a region of the southern Himalayas that falls under the Menling, Lunze, Zhayu, Medog and Ningchi counties of the Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh and the Tibet Autonomous Region of China. The present-day residence of the Adi people is strongly influenced by the historical location of ancient Lhouu. They are found in the temperate and sub-tropical regions of Siang, East Siang, Upper Siang, West Siang, Lower Dibang Valley, Lohit, Shi Yomi and Namsai districts within Arunachal Pradesh. However, the word “Adi” is not to be confused with the Loba people, as the Loba includes the Mishmi along with the Adi people. All ethnic groups identifying themselves as “Adi” are descendants of Abutani/Abotani. The old word Abor is a synonym of Assamese and literally means “free”. Adi literally means “hill” or “top of the mountain”. Adi Tribe | Abar Tribe

Village Council

The Adi live in hilly villages, each traditionally subordinating themselves to a chosen chief style Gam Bura or Gao Bura (Village Head), who controls the village council, which also serves as the traditional court, called ‘kebang’. The councils of the old days consisted of all the village elders and decisions were taken in a musup or dera (village community house) in which they lived.

Language and Literature

The various languages ​​and dialects of the Adi people fall into two groups: Abor (Abor-Minyong, Bor-Abor (Padam), Abor-Miri, etc.) and Loba (Lho-pa, Luoba).

Adi literature has been developed by Christian missionaries since 1900. Missionaries J.H. Lorraine and F.W. Savage published an Abor-Miri dictionary in 1906 with the help of Mupak Mili and Etsong Pertin, who are considered the father of the Adi language or Adi script.

Adis is taught as a third language in the schools of communities dominated by the Adi people. The Adi speak Hindi as a language to communicate with other indigenous groups of people in Arunachal Pradesh and other northeastern states. Adi Tribe | Abar Tribe


Most of the people of Adi traditionally follow the tribal Doni-Polo religion. Deities such as Keene Nene, Doing Bote, Gumin Soyin and Pedong Nene are worshipped.  The Religious rituals are led by a magician, called Miri (maybe a woman). Each deity is associated with certain functions and acts as protector of various subjects related to nature which revolve around their daily life.


Dormitories play an important role among the Adi people, and certain rules governing dormitories are followed. For example, a man can go to a women’s hostel, although he is not allowed to stay overnight. Sometimes parents have to be around to guide the children. Adi Tribe | Abar Tribe

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There are separate clothes for women and men which are woven by the women of the tribes. Helmets made of cane, bear and deer skins are sometimes worn by men, depending on the region.

While older women wear yellow necklaces and spiral earrings, unmarried girls wear a beyop, an ornament consisting of five to six brass plates under their petticoats. Tattooing was popular among older women.

The traditional measure of a family’s wealth is the possession of domestic animals (especially the gail), beads and ornaments, and land.

Adi cultivates wet rice and has a considerable agricultural economy. Rice serves as the staple food for them along with meat and other vegetables. Adi Tribe | Abar Tribe

Festivals and Dances

Adi celebrates many festivals, in particular, their major festivals are Aran, Donggin, Solung, Podi Barbie and Ator. Solung is celebrated for five days or more in the first week of September. It is a harvest festival followed by sowing and transplanting seeds to look for bumper crops of the future. Ponung songs and dances are performed by the female folk during the festival. On the last day of Solung, thrones and indigenous weapons are displayed along the path to the houses – there is a belief that they will protect people from evil spirits (this ritual is called ‘Taktor’).

The dances vary from the slow, rustic and beautifully mesmerizing Ponung style (performed at the Solang festival) to the exhilarating, exuberant thumps of daylong performed by men during the ‘Etore festival’. These dances have given rise to some forms of dance that jointly narrate a story, the ‘tappu’ (war dance). In the tappu, the dancers emphatically repeat the actions of the battle, its bloody descriptions and the victorious cries of the warriors. Yakjong is performed at the Aran festival. This is another type of dance in which dancers carry sticks with designs made by removing the blisters in certain patterns and then put them in the fire for some time, which creates marked black designs. 0 0 0.

Adi Tribe | Abar Tribe

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