Toda mund, villages & Todas, Neilgherries
Photographer: Bourne, Samuel
Medium: Photographic print
Photograph of a Toda mund (hamlet) in the Nilgiri Hills in Tamil Nadu, taken by Samuel Bourne in 1869. The Todas are one of the most well-known tribal peoples of Southern India. They live in communities in the Nilgiri Hills, their lives revolving around the local grasslands called 'sholas' and the herds of buffalo which they tend there. They have a rich tradition of crafts and are famous for their jewellery and elegantly draped cloaks and shawls decorated with traditonal black and red embroidery. Toda women often wear their hair parted in the centre with long ringlets and sometimes have tattooed decorations of dots and circles on their bodies.