54 Ethnic groups - List of Ethnic groups - Cham


Thiếu nữ dân tộc Chăm

Maiden of Cham

Official Name: Cham
Other name: Cham, Chiem, Chiem thanh, Cham Pa, Hoi...
Local Group Cham Hroi, Cham Pong, Cha Và Ku, Cham Chau Doc
Population: 161,729 people (General Statistics Office in 2009)
Language and writing: spoken language under Nam Dao language group. Cham has their own script basing on Sascit writing system.
Historical Origin: Cham people live in Central coast for long time.
Place of residence: live mainly in the province of Ninh Thuan, Binh Thuan and some other localities (Tay Ninh, An Giang, Dong Nai and Ho Chi Minh City).
Economic characteristics: The Cham has the tradition to grow wet rice and fruit trees, livestock and poultry. Traditional weaving and pottery is famous. Products Exchange, development on trade
Customs and habits
Way of Eating: ordinary meal, chewing betel, drinking wine in tank.
Way of living: On the low house on stilt or ground house in architectural complex in an area, simple buildings, and discreet villages. Cham was followed by matriarchy.
Means of transport: Cham often uses rudimentary vehicle based on animal traction. On the sea, they used to have fighting and trading boat team which are famous in history..
Marriage: bride’ family organize the wedding for their daughter then groom will live in bride’s house.
Funeral Issues: the Cham has the tradition to bury or cremate in accordance with the religion
Festivals: many agricultural festivals in annual period (ditch damming ceremony, down filled ceremony, the celebration of rice). However, the biggest festival is Bon Kate held in the temples in mid-October lunar calendar).
Belief: two main religions: Brahmanism (area of Ninh Thuan and Binh Thuan). Some follow Islamic Muslim or or Ba ni lslam.
Costume: Men wrap sarong, short blouses buttoned in front, shirt cut in chest. Women wrap panel skirt, wear long pullover with belt and usually have scarf around the chest.
Cultural life: The Cham’s ancient literature is very rich and unique with monument, biblical, myth, heroic epic, tales. Tower architecture and the cathedral are unique and typical. Traditional music with Saranai trumpet, paranung drums, kinang drums, erhu and many copper gong sets.


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