Above, from Olivier Tallec's collection, is a
detail of "a cloth (a blouse , sleeveless with V neck,
made of two pieces sewn together vertically like page 139 of
Michael Howard (Textiles of the Hill Tribes of Burma, Michael
C Howard). I found it four or five years ago, and I bought it
as a Chin Akha man's blouse."
Olivier's textile is very similar to a tunic in The Textile
Museum Journal 1999-2000 - Notes from the Field: On the Trail
of Khumi, Khami, and Mro Textiles by Deborah Lindsay Garner
and Jay Bommer. On page 40 "Fig 31. Zantu man's tunic
approximately 93 x 81 cm and Fig 32. Detail of Zantu man's tunic
shown in figure 31."
Bommer and Garner say on page 39 that: "The Zantu are
thought to live in a similar area to the Khumi, Khami and Mro.
"The long tunic is worn by the Zantu (or Santu) who live
on the lower parts of Lemro River. Their area stretches from
Myebon, which is southeast of Sittwe. Local people call the
Zantu the "Sea Chin" due to their proximity to the
Bay of Bengal. The second type of tunic is worn by men. (figs
31, 32). The men's garments are more somber in colour than the
woman's. The black background is striped in beautifully woven,
geometrically designed bands of varying widths, in soft warm
tones of madder and tan."
Bommer and Garner refer to the group as 'Zantu (or Santu)';
other literature refers to the group as 'Sungtu' or 'Sunghtu'
and this seems to be the name increasingly used to describe
Click on the images to the left to go to enlargements
of the tunic and another detail