The Lahu Nationality
The Lahu nationality has a population of about 412,800, most of whom live in Lancang, Menglian, Zhenyuan, Ximeng counties of Simao Prefectures, Shuangjiang, gemgma, Gengma, Cangyuan counties of Lincang Prefecture and Menghai County of Xishuanbanna Dai Autonomous Prefecture. The Lahu people are the descendants of the ancient Qiang people. In the 3th century, they lived around the Erhai Lahe, and in about the 10th century, they migrated southwards in several groups to where they stay now .they were called "Luohei" in the 'Qing Dynasty. "Lahu" is the name given by themselves. "La" means "tiger", and "Hu" means roasting meat until it becomes fragrant. The Lahu nationality is heretheto addressed as "A Tiger-Hunting Nationality".
The Lahu people have their own language that belongs to the Tibeto-Burman Branch of the Sino-Language Family. The majority of them believe in primitive religion and Mahayana Buddhism; some believe in Christianity. Their marital custom is called "cong qiju" which means that after getting married, the bridegroom should first live with the bride's family for three years before setting up his own house.
The men generally wear black turbans ,short collarless coats ,and loose trousers. They ware swords wherever they go. the costumes of the women are of the typical plateau style. They wear overcoats with vents stretching to the waist, The overcoats are usually decorated with colorful laces and silver bulbs on the collars and vents. They wear long trousers.
The major festival of the Lahu people is the Kuota Festival, which is their New Year festival. Besides, they also celebrate the torch Festival, the Nianli Festival and the dragon Boat festival. During a festival, they sing and dance until late at night.