painted goats

Mark F. Tritsch tritsch at MZDMZA.ZDV.UNI-MAINZ.DE
Thu Dec 5 16:24:04 UTC 1996

> katherine eirene ulrich wrote:
> >
> >When I was in Maharashtra last summer, I saw cows, oxen, and goats that  
> >had
> >been painted,
> >some quite elaborately, in psychedelic colors; one person told me this 
> >was
> >for a "local festival," but I never managed to find out more.
> >
> Long time ago I was in a Tamilnadu village during the Tamil New Year 
> festival (Pongal) and noticed a great number of bulls and buffaloes 
> painted for the festival. There was some talk about a buffalo sacrifice, 
> but majority of these animals had probably nothing to do with it.
> Klaus 

I understood that Pongal is a harvest festival - new rice is boiled 
with jaggary in a special dish to celebrate it on the first day, on 
the second day all the cattle are washed, painted in gay colours and 
allowed (encouraged) to chase around the village madly. On the 
third day there are very exciting and dangerous bull fights, in which 
men attempt to clamber on to the back of raging bulls (very angry looking 
black ones bred for the purpose) to grab a money prize in a brightly 
coloured bag on the bulls horns. There is no, repeat no, harm done to 
the bulls, and no weapons or implements are allowed.

and on the third day 

Dr. Mark F. Tritsch
Breslauer Strasse 14 B
65203 Wiesbaden

Tel/Fax: +49 611 691497


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