Photographer's Note

The Tonga (also called Batonga, Lake Shore Tonga or Nyasa Tonga) are an ethnic group living in northern Malawi. A related ethnic group also called the Tonga are found in Zambia and Zimbabwe, with some in Mozambique.The Tonga were primarily a fishing people with cassava as their staple food. Through mission education, they were able to earn higher wages during colonial times and worked primarily as porters, skilled or semi-skilled workers, and armed auxiliaries during the attack on Kimaurunga.

The Tonga had adopted the Ngoni custom of marriage payment of cattle, with kin liable for further payments if a child or wife fell ill. Males could not divorce their wives without a hearing of public repudiation, while she and her family, however, could dismiss him without formality, unless he had a wealthy or otherwise powerful family. The kin of a woman dying away from home could also demand burial permission and heavy payment from the husband.(source: Wikipedia)

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