The Umayamnon

Umayamnon

These Indigenous peoples dwell along the watershed of Umayam River in the Mountains of Pantaron in the Eastern side of the province of Bukidnon. They are fair in complexion five feet or above in height. Their eyes are set closed enough to each other with an average height of nose bridge. They are proud and reserved people.

The Umayamnon is synonymous to fierceness for their group is regarded as warlike and forest experts. But according to Opena (1982), these people are just suspicious and wary of strangers for whenever there are crimes committed in places that are easily reached by law enforcing agencies, the criminals often flee to the Umayam region hence criminals are often hunted in Umayam and almost always these hunts are futile.

They chew betel nut very frequently and their teeth are filed to uniform length which are mostly blackened. Purposes for making the teeth black are two namely: for medicinal purposes and for decoration. The black dye that they used to blacken the teeth means one distinction of being a human (who knows how to dye his teeth black) for according to them only monkeys have white teeth. Umayamnon are excellent makers of bead jewelry like the necklaces called ginakit and inboy, beautiful beaded men's bag called suning and unisex beaded bracelets called binuklad.

The Umayamnon traces their kinds bilaterally, that is the blood relations of both father and mother are esteemed as close relatives. Reciprocal roles are expected from them like helping raise a ransom or a bride price, sharing games or catch for the day or participating in a communal field clearing the kagsakum.

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