Lu ethnic group
Name of ethnic group: Lu (Nhuon and Duon). Population: 4,964 people (Year 1999). Locality: Phong Tho and Sin Ho Districts of Lai Chau Province.
Customs and habits
The Lu practice Buddhism. After their dead is buried, the family hold a rite which brings the dead's soul to the pagoda. The Lu lives in houses built on stilts with two roofs and the entrance to their homes faces the northwest.
Young men and women are free to choose their partners. Their parents' approval must be sought first, however, before the marriage can take place. The couple must then consult a fortune-teller for an age examination. If the fortune-teller finds that the ages of the couple are compatible, they can then prepare for marriage. The children take the father's family name after birth. Boys have a common middle name, "Ba", and girls, "Y". The Lu are a very friendly and faithful group of people. Divorce rarely takes place in Lu society.The Lu enjoys eating sticky rice with chilly and drinking tea.
The Lu language belongs to the Tay-Thai Group. The Lu like to sing "khap" (song verses), tell old stories, proverbs, recite poems, play flutes, two-string violins, and drums.
Lu men wear trousers and women wear skirts. Their garments are decorated with colourful motifs on dark indigo cloths.
The Lu has been engaged in farming for a long time. The Lu also utilize slash-and-burn land to grow corn, cassava, groundnut, indigo, and cotton.