A Sumbawa family on the stairs of their home, pre-1943.
|Regions with significant populations|
|Sumbawa language, Indonesian language|
|Islam (predominantly), Doii Donggo (folk religion), Hinduism, Buddhism|
|Related ethnic groups|
|Balinese people, Sasak people|
Sumbawa or Samawa people are an ethnic group of people who live in the western and central region of Sumbawa Island, which comprises West Sumbawa Regency and Sumbawa Regency. The Sumbawa people refer themselves as Tau Samawa people and their language is Sumbawa language. Neither the Bima nor the Sumbawa people have alphabets of their own; they use the alphabets of the Bugis and the Malay language indifferently. The majority of the Sumbawa people practice Islam. The Sumbawa people once established their own government which became the Sumbawa Sultanate and lasted until 1931. Sakeco music always plays a special role in the custom of Sumbawa people.
The main activities of the Sumbawa people are agriculture and animal husbandry. They usually cultivate the earth by slash-and-burn method. Plow and irrigation methods are very rarely used. Sumbawa people traditionally grow corn (which has become a major industry), beans, peppers, vegetables, onions, garlic, coffee and fruit trees. Cattle breeding is dominant in livestock breeding, but the breeding of buffaloes, small horned livestock and poultry are also developed. Sumbawa eat mostly plant based foods, while consumption of meat takes place during festivals and other celebrations. They live in permanent settlements, as well as in temporary ones. Traditional accommodation is divided into several parts. There is no ceiling, instead an attic is made over the female part of the house. In the fields, temporary settlements are often located; where women, old people and children also reside. Among the Sumbawa people, traditional beliefs and rituals are still preserved.
Elements of the traditional wedding ceremony have been preserved, such as bride price, a joint bathing of the bride and groom and a common dining table. A traditional family is monogamous. However in principle polygamy is not forbidden, but it is practiced quite rarely because of the big sum of money that the bridegroom must pay for the bride.
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