his own household. If any widow is the head of a household, her section is constructed by her male neighbours or relatives without payment.
Before beginning the building of a new house favourable omens must be obtained; and the Kayans would be much troubled if bad omens were observed during the building, especially during the first few days. At this time, therefore, children are told off to beat upon gongs hung about
the new site, and so, by scaring away the birds and obscuring the sound of their cries, to prevent the appearance of bad omens from their side. Bad omens combined with ill-luck, such as death, bad dreams, or an attack by enemies during building (even if this were successfully repelled), would lead to the desertion of a partially built house and the choice of another site.
All the interior peoples construct their houses on principles similar to those described above, but with considerable diversity in detail. The greatest vol. 1 p