Nuer - History and Cultural Relations



Nuer living to the east of the Nile speak of their western relatives as "homeland Nuer" and have a consistent oral tradition indicating that their expansion across the Nile, as far as the Ethiopian border, has a 200-year legacy. In the process of this expansion, they forced the Anuak to migrate farther east into Ethiopia, and incorporated many Dinka into Nuer communities. Nuer versed in such matters suggest that at one time three "brothers"—Nuer, Dinka, and Atuot—once lived in a neighboring territory. Legends suggest that they parted company to go their own ways following a dispute about the rightful ownership of a number of cattle. Both Atuot and Nuer traditions indicate that this separation and initial migration originated in a cattle camp in what is now termed western "Nuerland." These legends of migration sometimes have mythical properties, but it is prudent to appreciate them also for their historical character. It is certain that the Nuer, Dinka, and Atuot have a common "origin," and archaeological research may indicate that the spread of domesticated cattle in this region of Africa was contemporaneous with the origin of distinct ethnic identities. An especially active period of Nuer eastward migration began in the middle of the nineteenth century. Beginning at the turn of the twentieth century, British colonial policy in Nuerland was aimed at fixing boundaries between the Nuer and the Dinka, thus effectively halting a dynamic process of cultural change that had been unfolding for centuries.

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User Contributions:

1
Dak Kuok
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Apr 16, 2012 @ 6:06 am
The article seem to be correct but the pigure of the Nuer population that is ussually displayed is most of the time the estimate of soo many years back that may not bring the aproximate number of the current population because at that time parents never allow any count of young children.
2
gatyay ngut
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May 8, 2012 @ 6:06 am
my comment to that topic is, nuer are very social people in every daily life with others regardless of who you are and iam very proud for being a nuer by birth.
3
Stephen Keah Luony
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Aug 15, 2012 @ 4:16 pm
I did numerous searched on the origin of the Nuer tribe before they identified themselves in Western part of the nile (Liech)but no ideal that foster logic and reasoning.It is of greate importance to our young generation and interlinkage of the fact about the Naath tribe.The different information from the old people(age) differs since vaibility of verble message is minimum.Therefore,"where did the Nuer originated before occupying Liech".Trace the route followed by the Nuer before 1700.
4
William Both
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Jan 13, 2013 @ 2:02 am
The article shed light on the origin of Nuer and in fact, some of the infromation contain in this article appears to confirm the history of Nuer origin told by elders. For instance, many people who claim to know Nuer history claim that Nuer and Dinka were brothers. Atuot (s) on the other hand were part of greater Nuer tribe and they (Atuot) recently probably 350 years ago migrated to Dinka land and thus become part of Dinka tribe. Once more, it's true that Nuer expansion Eastward forced Anuak to vacated their ancestoral homeland and pushed them to settle mostly along Ethiopia and South Sudan corridor. Also, most of the Dinka who refused to leave their land were assimilated and they become Nuer. However, I can disagree with the writer regarding the date of Nuer eastward expansion. Instead of 19th century the writer claimed about the Nuer expansion eastward, I beleive based on the historical events such as the rise of Ngundeng and many more examples, I estimated that the Nuer expansion eastward occured between 16th and 17th centuries.
5
sunday
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May 19, 2014 @ 11:23 pm
Nuer are very vigilant,well mannered and generous people.i'm proud to be Nuer.
6
kueth lam
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Feb 8, 2015 @ 7:07 am
i wanted to learn my grandfather history as well as my own history in life.
7
Nhial Ninrew
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May 17, 2016 @ 2:14 pm
Nuer nowaday described as democratic tribes in S. Sudan because of their forgiveness and have feeling of patriotic in their country
8
Priscilla
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Feb 23, 2017 @ 8:08 am
This article helped me so much on my project and I really enjoy learning about Dinka's history
9
Oscar
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May 1, 2017 @ 8:08 am
Hi everyone Thx for the info this really helped me with my school Project!
10
jessy
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Sep 20, 2017 @ 1:13 pm
this was some good info :) thanks for it to so helpful for 8th grade work so hard you know
11
Jay-quan
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Oct 6, 2017 @ 7:07 am
Thx this helped me out real good the test yesterday. THX again
12
Leah C. Baker
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Oct 11, 2017 @ 1:13 pm
in class we are doing a small comparison with the Dinka and Nuer tribes in groups. I was in charge of the info. for the Nuer tribe! This page really helped!
13
Cameron J. Moore
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Nov 6, 2017 @ 2:14 pm
In class we are doing a small comparison with Dinka and Nuer tribes alone. I had to do location, language, religion, Beliefs and practices, celebrations, family, food, clothing, heritage, and Things they do for fun and this helped alot i am happy you made this.
14
David Lony Majak Makuei
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Dec 20, 2017 @ 7:07 am
Still the relevancies of NUER history required more documentations and research.
15
Stephen Bang
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Feb 20, 2018 @ 4:04 am
The history of Nuer, It is true ,but those who are Nuer they were not migrated from other place to Ethiopia during British, they were stay here before Ethiopian feudalism with Agnwa to gather, you the collector of that story or Anthropologist you have to better to collect more history about Nuer even population of Nuer and their economics was not correct during British census.
Thanks you
16
Andy
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Mar 9, 2018 @ 1:13 pm
hi im andy and this article was an article that made me properly understand the nuer tribe
17
David
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Apr 11, 2018 @ 10:10 am
Thanks for the website. It helped me with my research project. (:
18
jaknguan
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May 19, 2018 @ 12:12 pm
sure these is very helpful now and forever for future generation of nuer(naath) i am proud of you brave people
19
koat
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Aug 13, 2018 @ 6:06 am
True nuer (Naath)son am really proud of U why do nuer people forgive their enemies so easily
20
matthew
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Sep 27, 2018 @ 2:14 pm
hi. Nuer living to the east of the Nile speak of their western relatives as "homeland Nuer" and have a consistent oral tradition indicating that their expansion across the Nile, as far as the Ethiopian border, has a 200-year legacy. In the process of this expansion, they forced the Anuak to migrate farther east into Ethiopia, and incorporated many Dinka into Nuer communities. Nuer versed in such matters suggest that at one time three "brothers"—Nuer, Dinka, and Atuot—once lived in a neighboring territory. Legends suggest that they parted company to go their own ways following a dispute about the rightful ownership of a number of cattle. Both Atuot and Nuer traditions indicate that this separation and initial migration originated in a cattle camp in what is now termed western "Nuerland." These legends of migration sometimes have mythical properties, but it is prudent to appreciate them also for their historical character. It is certain that the Nuer, Dinka, and Atuot have a common "origin," and archaeological research may indicate that the spread of domesticated cattle in this region of Africa was contemporaneous with the origin of distinct ethnic identities. An especially active period of Nuer eastward migration began in the middle of the nineteenth century. Beginning at the turn of the twentieth century, British colonial policy in Nuerland was aimed at fixing boundaries between the Nuer and the Dinka, thus effectively halting a dynamic process of cultural change that had been unfolding for centuries.
21
Aiden Kind
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Sep 28, 2018 @ 12:12 pm
Thanks for the information. I also had to do a research project and this helped a lot.
22
Kaeden Murphy
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Oct 2, 2018 @ 7:19 pm
Very helpful and useful website in order to get papers or assignment of any sort done, thank you. :)
23
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Dec 15, 2018 @ 2:14 pm
Thanks creators of this website,it is very helpful especially young generation.
24
Gatluak Tot Nyuot
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Feb 2, 2019 @ 4:04 am
Am so much pleasant to be Nuer. Nuer are so much skilled people in the Africa as well as global they have their grand descendent which is more recognized in the World.That is why they are NƐY TIN NAATH.which mean that Really Human being.
25
Jasman Mohil
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Feb 19, 2019 @ 10:10 am
This article is short and this is better than a silly worksheet too. This a helpful article like when you are doing a project related to this topic or something else.
26
jesus
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Feb 21, 2019 @ 12:12 pm
Love article keep up the good work my sons.
I am a Nuer man myself and I think you have got this article very close to our lives can you donate some chicken herein South Africa
27
bobbbby
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Mar 21, 2019 @ 2:14 pm
Hi I'm Bobby, I loved the article it was beautiful.
28
jimmy
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Mar 21, 2019 @ 2:14 pm
my name is jimmy you can call me larry though and the article is amazing it's very pretty
29
Jayda
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Apr 11, 2019 @ 10:10 am
Why did Nuer and Dinka have to hate each other . Why don't they just be friends? But the article was pretty interesting
30
Ngueny Deng Pal
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Jun 2, 2019 @ 10:10 am
Cattle have historically been of the highest symbolic, religious and economic value among the Nuer. Sharon Hutchinson notes that "...among Nuer people the difference between people and cattle were continually underplayed. Cattle are particularly important in their role as bride wealth, where they are given by a husband's lineage to his wife's lineage. It is this exchange of cattle which ensures that the children will be considered to belong to the husband's lineage and to his line of descent. The classical Nuer institution of ghost marriage, in which a man can "father" children after his death, is based on this ability of cattle exchanges to define relations of kinship and descent. In their turn, cattle given over to the wife's patrilineage enable the male children of that patrilineage to marry, and thereby ensure the continuity of her patrilineage. A barren woman can even take a wife of her own, whose children (obviously biologically fathered by men from outside unions) then become members of her patrilineage, and she is legally and culturally their father, allowing her to participate in reproduction in a metaphorical sense.

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