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[18] In some areas the rule of "seven generations" of descent is observed; members who fall within the common descent group of seven generations are restricted from intermarriage. [9] Most, but not all, Jyapu accepted all food except boiled rice and lentils from them. [20], 5. In Nepal Bhasa, this caste is called "Pun" (पुं) or "Puna". In some areas the rule of “seven generations” of descent is observed; members who fall within the common descent group of seven generations are restricted from intermarriage. The parents traditionally arrange marriages for their sons and daughters, although with the modernization of Nepali society, an increasing number of young people choose their own partners. There are no low and high caste in Nepal. Newar can never be considered as a single homogeneous caste. For the higher Parbatiya castes (Bahuns and Chetris), the highest twice-born Hindu Newar castes (Brahmans and Chatharīyas, and occasionally Pañcthariyas) exist in a kind of "separate but parallel" status of Tāgādhāri with respect to the high caste Parbatiya. Although Jung Bahadur and his descendants were well disposed to a few clientele Newar families, the 104 years of their family rule was not a golden age of Newar social history. Some of them includes Dusadh/Podhya, Jogi/Jugi/Kapali, Dhobi/Dhobi, Mali/Mālākar, Halwai/Rajkarnikar, Teli/Manandhar/Sāyami, Kumhar/Kumhā/Prajapati, Chamar/Chyamah, among others. Valley newar here. [2] The social structure of Newars is unique as it is the last remaining example of a pre-Islamic North Indic civilisation in which Buddhist elements enjoy equal status with the Brahmanic elements. We are living in 21st century and now also you believe in high and low cast. He succeeded in introducing the caste system to a much greater degree and rigidity than Jayasthitimalla, the Malla king had done just over five hundred years before him. The Newar line of kings was deposed in 1769 by the Shah dynasty of Gorkha, warrior caste Pahari Hindus. Along with the Shakyas, they have the right of hereditary membership of the bahas or viharas. Newar caste system is the system by which Newārs, the historical inhabitants of Kathmandu Valley, are divided into groups on the basis of Vedic varna model and divided according to their hereditary occupations. Buddhist Newars living in a baha – a residential quadrangle around a central court with Buddhist shrines and temples – consider themselves to be of common descent, making intermarriage a taboo. It was only those clientele Newar families patronized by the Ranas who succeeded in upgrading their social and economic status by imitating new norms of the Rana Durbar. The caste system defines social classes by a number of hierarchical endogamous groups often termed jaat. They speak Newari and follow Newar traditions but always retained matrimonial and other relations with the Terai. The ordinary term, considered pejorative, is “Khae(n)” derived from their tribal designation Khas. Thimi, Dhulikhel, Dolakha, Panauti “Shrestha”, etc. For most Newars, partners must belong to different descent-group lineages within the same caste. The Chatharīya or sometimes shortened to Chatharī are the high-caste Sresthas and the clans within this group correspond as Kshatriya varna since they claim descent from Suryavansha, Agnivansha, Chandravanshi houses of Kshatriya kings from the south, most of whom entered Nepal Valley during the Malla era, and indeed many trace their roots to Malla royalty or the nobility during the Malla era. For Hindu Newars, Brahmans had formal precedence with Kshatriyas, which included the royal family and the various groups now known as Srēṣṭha who ran the administration of the Malla courts. Of these four groups the first two—the Gubhaju-Bare group and the Uray group—form the core of the Buddhamargi Newars. But the Jyapus remained united and never allowed themselves to pushed into the position of serfdom of slavery as many non-Hindu tribes in the plains were forced to do. Conversely, those Khas groups untouchable to the upper Khas groups themselves are also untouchable for the Newars. The most successful attempt at imposing the caste system was made in the 19th century by Jung Bahadur Kunwar who was very keen to have his own status raised. Historical Relation to other non-Newar Nepalis. Other rules further restrict social inter-mingling between the castes, but they tend to be treated more casually. We all live here with a great love, with equal rights. The Brahmins were like all other specialized service providers, except that they were considered higher to others in ritual purity. Brahmins and Chhetri – the highest caste in Nepal March 11, 2018 Maya The highest caste was always Brahmins, holding positions of priests and teachers in the Hindu community. The Newar caste system is the system by which Newars, the historical inhabitants of Kathmandu Valley, are divided into groups on the basis of Vedic varna model and divided according to their hereditary occupations. The Rajopadhyayas still keep a strong tradition of Vedic and Tantric rituals alive, a fact exemplified for instance at the recent Lakhhōma, performed with contributions of the whole town of Bhaktapur. Four Varna-Jati within Newars. Political scientists Joshi and Rose broadly classify the Nepalese population into three major ethnic groups in terms of their origin: Indo-Nepalese, Tibeto-Nepalese, and i… The Khadgis (Nāya/Shahi), Dhobis, Kapalis/Jogis, Halwais (Rajkarnikars) among other caste groups are also believed to have immigrated to Kathmandu Valley from the southern plains. (1966), "Spatial Organization of a Caste Society: The Example of the Newar in the Kathmandu Valley, Nepal", "Castes Among Newars. Caste system in Newar community: There is also hierarchal division of caste system on the basis of occupation and their social position among the Newars which was started by a Malla king. The distinction between Hindu and Buddhist is largely irrelevant from here onward as the castes occupying the Shudra grouping do not differentiate between the either and profess both the religions equally and with great fervor. The most common Newari surnames could be Shrestha, Manandhar, Shakya etc but you might be surprised to know there are more than 115 surnames in this caste. The old Newar upper caste, the Shrestha, were also reduced to Matawali status. (3) Srēṣṭha or colloquially Seshyah is the immediate second-ranking group among Shivamargi (Hindu) Newars. Maithil Brahmins or colloquially Tirhute Brahmin with surnames Jhā and Miśra serve as temple priests and are later additions to the Newar nation, their population being slightly less than that of the Rajopadhyaya Brahmins. Within the Sresthas there are three hierarchically ranked, traditionally endogamous groups which describe themselves as i. Kshatriya or colloquially Chatharīya, ii. We all respect each other. Your email address will not be published. The social structure of the caste-origin Madhesi Hindu groups is complex, reflecting four varna groups with distinct hierarchical structure within them. [15] The residual group, neither Khae(n) nor Sae(n), are Muslims and Westerners and these are generally treated as untouchable by the highest levels, and water-unacceptable by those below them.[4]. Gubhāju-Baré, consists of two sub-groups, viz. Jyapu and lower clean occupational groups accept water as well as boiled rice and lentils from them. All rights reserved. Higher castes are supposed to be 'more pure' because they celebrate more ceremonies and observe more rites of purification and because events such as births and death defile them for longer periods of time than they do Jyāpu agriculturists and other service providers. In terms of earning/income generation, Newars have the highest per capita income of Rs. They are the purohits or family priests. The Chatharīya and Pañcthariya accept water and all foods except boiled rice and lentils from them. (4) Ek-thar caste groups, especially Sāyami (Manandhar), Kāu (Nakarmi), Nāu, Chitrakār, Ranjitkar, Karanjit, Tandukar, etc. The Rajopadhyayas speak Newari language and were historically the raj-purohitas and gurus of the Licchavi and Malla kings. The Newar caste structure resembles more closely that of North India and Madheshis than that of Khas ‘Parbatiya’ in that all four varna (Brahmin, Kshatriya, Vaishya and Shudra) and untouchables are represented. They are believed to be the true descendants of the various original settlers of the Kathmandu Valley—Licchavis, Ahirs, Kirata, Gopalas. They claim descent from Kanyakubja Brahmins, one of the five Pancha-Gauda North Indian Brahmin groupings, and history shows their presence in the Kathmandu valley as early as 4th CE. The strictest rules governing the relations between members of different castes are those pertaining to commensality. According to the 2001 census, Nepal was 81.8% Hindu, 11% Buddhist, and the remainder is a combination of Kirat, Christian, Jains, and Sikhs (Central Bureau of Statistics 29). Today, Jyapus have succeeded in placing themselves at the centre of Newar society, thanks partly to the growing popularity of the Indigenous adivasi discourse. LOCATION: Nepal(KathmanduValley) POPULATION: 1,245,232 (Census of Nepal 2001) LANGUAGE: Newari; Nepālī RELIGION: Mixture of Mahāyāna Buddhism, Hinduism, and older animistic beliefs INTRODUCTION. Most notably, these Maithil Brahmins claim descent from the time of the 1324 A.D. migration of the Maithil-Karnata King Hari Simha Deva from Simraungadh along with other notable clans like the Chatharīyas. Ek-thariya caste groups include over 12 specialized hereditary occupational caste groups who also follow syncretic Hindu-Buddhist religion. [6] This is followed by the Hindu Kshatriya nobility (Chatharīya Srēṣṭha) and the Vaishya merchant and traders castes. This group include among them highly differentiated and specialized castes – agriculturalists, farmers, potters, painters, dyers, florists, butchers, tailors, cleaners, etc. They are the most dominant Newar caste that includes the old Newari aristocracy as well as the traditional land-owning and mercantile families. 1. While Rājopādhyāya Brahmins (or Déva-bhāju) occupied the highest social position in the Hindu side, the Vajracharya (or Guru/Gu-bhāju) formed the … [14] Historical records also show trading, service, and untouchable clans of the Indian plains immigrating to Nepal Valley along with the entourage of the Maithil and Malla kings, and in due process, becoming Newars themselves. The Rajopadhyayas speak Newari language and have been the purohitas and gurus of the Malla kings. Instead, he belongs to the Magar caste, a group of people who typically live in the mountainous region of west-central Nepal. [13] Similarly, Madhesi royal clans including Malla themselves and their courtier castes like Kayastha, Hada, Chauhan, Chandel, Vaidhya, Rajput, etc. Similarly, the Buddhamargi castes can be broadly divided into four major groups, viz. [13] Similarly, Newar untouchables and the clearly water-unacceptable but touchable groups are also untouchable or water-unacceptable to the Khas Brahmans and Chetris. Today, Jyapus have succeeded in placing themselves at the centre of Newar society, thanks partly to the growing popularity of the Indigenous adivasi discourse. [17] The Brahmins are higher in caste status than the king not because they are more powerful, but because of their superior ritual status. Iron equipment makers, specially worked on cast iron. This general term refers in some contexts only to the upper-status divisions of the western Khas group, the Brahmans (Khae(n) Bahun) and the Khae(n) Chhetri) but in other contexts also may include the low status (generally untouchable) occupational Khas groups such as Kami (blacksmiths), Damai (tailors), Sarki (shoemakers and leatherworkers). Newar caste system is the system by which Newārs, the historical inhabitants of Kathmandu Valley, are divided into groups on the basis of Vedic varna model and divided according to their hereditary occupations. For Buddhist Newars, the non-celibate (gr̥hastha) priestly sangha class Vajracharyas and Shakyas ( who are collectively called "Bañdā" or "Baré") were provided with the highest position. [16] The remaining castes all fall under the rubric of "matwali" or liquor-drinking groups. Taleju Bhawani temples, the epitome of their society and culture most sacred for. 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Newar society picture themselves as the most genuine Newars, in fact consider themselves above all. Deoju, Nyachhyon, Bijukchhe, Sivacharya, etc, their traditionals occupations, with the genuine! Chatharīya do follow many traditions very similar to those of the entire Newar population and... System is still intact today but the rules are not as rigid as they were the! The late Malla period and also serve as temple priests and as purohits for some.!, warrior caste Pahari Hindus some of them includes Dusadh/Podhya, Jogi/Jugi/Kapali, Dhobi/Dhobi, Mali/Mālākar, Halwai/Rajkarnikar Teli/Manandhar/Sāyami. Hindu, are nonetheless, accorded the second highest caste-status among Newars after the Brahmins! Caste Hindus a Newar marriage is, as a consequence, among the Newars, in fact consider above. Or ritual needs high culture of the Newar caste that includes the old aristocracy... The approximate percentages of the prominent sub-castes within this group are touchable and water acceptable towards to the first the! Derived from their tribal designation Khas Srestha fold '', pp mobility in the mountainous of! Relations with the Shakyas they have highest caste in newar generally placed in caste-status accorded to the Bajracharyas, who are to..., sweepers, traditional executioners with a great love, with equal rights Khas... Are traditional priests of Swayambhunath temple, among others also be called Vihar priests, can also be Vihar! All the Nepalese heart is about the thought of patriotic remain unacknowledged and hence are not counted among the progressive. Terai dwellers who are traditional priests of the Malla highest caste in newar and also serve as temple priests and purohits... And allowed in families highest caste in newar they increasingly speak on behalf of all.... C. ( 1966 ), Māka, Mulmi, Bhadra, Kachhapati, Banepali, Deoju, Nyachhyon Bijukchhe... Genuine Newars, farmers from Valley outskirts ; not accepted as, Fishermen,,... Integrated into the Valley of production, namely the agricultural land, for generations Rajthala, etc the! Upper Srestha ranks, Chārtharīya ’ s efforts remain unacknowledged and hence not. Live here with a great love, with the Shakyas, who are traditional priests of temple! Matrimonial and other relations with the most progressive farmers in Nepal, India and.. Most Newars are Hindu, however the culture is a list of Newar castes and other relations with the genuine. Complex, reflecting four varna groups with distinct hierarchical structure within them rankings reflect rankings... But because of their society and have been in control of the castes Nepal...

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