Lisu ethnic minority

Lisu ethnic minority

    The majority of the 574,600 Lisus live in the Nujiang Lisu Autonomous Prefecture in northwestern Yunnan Province, with a scattering found in Lijiang, Baoshan, Diqing, Dehong, Dali, and Chuxiong.
    The Lisu language belongs to the Chinese-Tibetan language family. In 1957, a new alphabetic script was created for the Lisu people.
    The Lisus inhabit a mountainous area slashed by rivers. The Nujiang River and the Lancang River flow through the area, forming two big valleys. Main farm crops are maize, rice, wheat, buckwheat, sorghum and beans. Cash crops include ramie, lacquer trees and sugarcane. Many parts of the mountains are covered with dense forests, famous for their China firs. In addition to rare animals, the forests yield many medicinal herbs including the rhizome of Chinese gold thread and the bulb of fritillary. The Lisu area also has abundant mineral and water resources.
    The Lisu Nationality with a history of long standing are the descendants of the ancient Di_Qiang nationality.The Lisu woman can be divided into White Lisu, Black Lisu and Flower Lisu by the colours of their costumes. The White Lisu and the Black Lisu woman’s clothing includes right-buttoned garments and gunny skirts; the married woman wear big brass earrings, chains of coral, beads ornament on the head, and some others wear strings of agate or sea shell and silver coin necklaces. An expensive chest ornament is said to be worth one or two oxen. The Flower Lisu woman look very graceful by putting on trimmed costumes and skirts of dazzling colour with brass and silver earrings.

    As for the Lisu men, they wear gunny coats and short pants. Some wear black headdresses, others have long hair and twine it at the back of their heads. A grown-up man uaually carries a long-bladed chopper on the left side and quiver on the right.