Home biography THE TRIBE WHICH WRAPPED CHILDREN HEAD WITH CLOTH TO HAVE THIS SHAPE

THE TRIBE WHICH WRAPPED CHILDREN HEAD WITH CLOTH TO HAVE THIS SHAPE

Even with the coming of civilization in Africa, there are still some tribes which believe in their old ways of doing things.

The Mangbetu are a Central Sudanic ethnic group in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, living in the northeastern province of Haut-Uele.

The Mangbetu are known for their highly developed art and music. One instrument associated with and named after them is the Mangbetu harp or guitar.

The Mangbetu stood out to European colonists because of their elongated heads. Traditionally, babies’ heads were wrapped tightly with cloth in order to give them this distinctive appearance. The practice was called called Lipombo

With more Europeans settling in the area throughout the 1950’s, Lipombo was seen as a barbaric custom contradicting modern Western values. The ritual would be outlawed by then-ruling Belgian government, quite ironic given their track record of atrocities against the Congolese population.

The tribe believes that the skull deformation brings about a higher intelligence. Although some people believe that this practice is harmful to the child’s brain development, Experts says the brain is capable of adapting and developing into the shape of the skull.

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