Nomads' life

Bringing up a healthy generation, strong enough to preserve purity and multiplication of wealth resources of a tribe, its honesty and dignity was a tribal concern in Kyrgyzstan. The saying was «Kyz tuulsa-kyrk baital, uul tuulsa-soul karmaar» («girl's birth - addition to herd, boy's - addition lo defenders»). From their childhood, children were accustomed to socially useful labour, idle ones were condemned: «Orozoidun balasy ongo chyksa di zliash imysh» («hopeless Orozoi's son is still a baby after ten years»).

In case of man's death, his wife, children and property were cared for by a branch   Widow married to one of the younger relatives of a man, who then adopted his children. Should he had not got any close relatives, she married a distant one. In this case his properly was left to closer relatives and the widow's new husband paid them «zhesir doo»(«Tegin tabuu, uirun tabuu»-«finding of sources of his own herd). («widow fee»). Return to her parents was only possible when a dead man had not any close relatives at all. Even then children, brought up m maternal side, kept the member­ship of father's tribe   In case of child's murder, kun was demanded and paid lo father's tribe, not mother's.  At the adult ago a boy grown up in alien tribes should return to his father's

To increase the number of descendants and the size of the tribe, adoption of children was widely practiced - «enchilesh bata», «tonsuz bata»-(«baby with rights of legacy, «off-the-womb baby»). Adoption might have  taken place even at adult age. It was enough to bring adopted child's face to the breast of the adopting man's wife in presence of witnesses, with a path to be their honest son. Adopting parent took whole responsibility for his son: paid fines, kun and got the same for him, like for his own child. Rights and duties of adopted child were similar like step-brothers, but unlike them he could return to his natives at any time.

Biy and Manaps of big tribes and clans, chasing for supremacy, influence and territory with other tribal congregations tried to seduce and «provide» authorities over smaller, often impressed sub-clans and branches, who did not enter the main clan of their enemy.

Main property well-being of a tribe was a collective care for its integrity and enlargement. Main property was living stock, mobile in migrations, hostile assaults, or trophy, taken from en­emy, during successful campaign. Relatives and their property protection was the main objective for the men, trained for that from their young age. Man, lacking technique in riding and personal braveness deserved shame. Each of them should be armed, cuirassed and possessing a horse, to be in time at the collection site, after hearing:  «Attan!» Zhoo keldi! («Boots and saddle! Enemy is near) to fight with dignity.

Closely related families formed all. All ails of a clan or tribe, avoiding robberies and captures by enemies, migrated together. Day of migration was defined by Biy or Chief Manap, to be reported to eldest representatives of all ails. Nothing and none could re-date migration (neither poor weather, nor anything else). To postpone migration for a day could be allowed for an ail only for funerals. Even this excuse was not often used. Normally, they took a corpse to bury him/her midway, during a short stop-over. To protect the nomads in Kyrgyzstan, there were special detachments assigned. On a new place can settled in a line ail by ail, stretching for several kilometers. (Kyrgyzdar, 1993. p. 530)

To define cattle ownership, tamga (brand-mark) and en label) were used. Brand was unified for the whole clan. Tamga of Kyrgyz tribes was divided by shape into orok tamga (sikle shape), ai tamga (crescent), kylych tamga (sabre), kaychy tamga (crossed), kyishik tamga  (crooked).



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