Ingilos - Economy



Subsistence and Commercial Activities. Since ancient times the Ingilos have practiced a diversified agricultural economy: animal husbandry and the cultivation of grains, garden vegetables, wine grapes, and various fruits; walnuts have been a particularly widespread crop. Tobacco and silk were also produced. The various forms of traditional domestic industry, especially the production of textiles, played an important role in the local economy. The Ingilos were skilled stonemasons, joiners, tinsmiths, etc. The Ingilos have long been renowned for their talents as builders. At the beginning of autumn a large segment of the men would leave their settlements and go elsewhere to engage in seasonal work for the autumn and winter; spring and summer were the peak periods for economic activities in Ingilo villages.

Clothing. The style of Ingilo clothing is for the most part like that of Kakheti and Kartli. The traditional male costume of lowland Saingilo consisted of the Georgian woolen frock ( chokha ), the arkhalukh (Caucasian long shirt), and kalamani (leather shoes), manufactured in traditional domestic fashion. In the mountains men wore coats of well-softened sheepskin; prosperous families purchased, or made for themselves, long thickly padded sheepskin coats called burman, sewn together from lamb skins (similar to the buruma, which was especially popular among the Lezgians who had migrated to the mountainous regions of Saingilo). Also in widespread use was the so-called chop'uzi, a type of felt cloak. The chop'uzi was sewn together from scraps of wool and white, crudely worked felt. The traditional Ingilo women's costume included many common Georgian features, but differed in some respects, including baggy cotton trousers and long gowns, similar in outer appearance to the arkhalukh worn by men. The festival costume of Ingilo women was made from velvet and silk, adorned with silver ormanents.


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