Travel Yunnan China : Yunnan Minorities : The Pumi Nationality

The Pumi Nationality

The Pumi nationality has a population of only 31,000. They live mainly in Lanping County of Nujiagn Prefecture, Ninglang , Lijiang, Yongshen counties of Lijniang Prefecture and weixi County of diqing Prefecture. Their ancestors were the Guqiang, a nomadic tribe on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. In the 13th century, they fought southwards to Yunnan with Kublai Khan. They were called "Xifan" or "Baju" in ancient times, and they addressed themselves as "Pumiying", "Pumi", and "Peimi", which all mean white people in the Han language. This is because they worship the color white. In 1960, they were collectively named the Pumi nationality. The Pumi people have their own language that belongs to the Tibeto-Burman Branch of the Sino-Tibetan Language family, but the branch has not been decided yet .Most of them can speak Mandarin, the Bai and the Naxi languages. They have adopted the Han and the Tibetan writing systems. They believe in primitive religion and regard the white-fronted tiger as their totem.

Their principal festivals are the Da Guonian Festival. the Zhuanshanhui festival and the Changxinjie (New Rice Tasting festival). the Da Guonian Festival is celebrated during the Spring Festival. It lasts for three to fifteen days. On the New Year's Eve, a solemn adult initiation ceremony called "Putting on Trousers "or "Putting on Skirts" is held in those families with a thirteen -year-old child.

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