Yeyo Discovery

The Maasai

The Maasai (sometimes spelled “Masai”) are a Nilotic ethnic group of semi-nomadic people inhabiting southern Kenya and northern Tanzania. They are among the best known local populations due to their residence near the many game parks of the African Great Lakes, and their distinctive customs and dress.[

Maasai originated from the lower Nile valley arriving in a long trunk of land stretching from what is now northern Kenya to what is now central Tanzania between the 17th and late 18th century.

Maasai society is strongly patriarchal in nature, Traditional Maasai lifestyle centres around their livestocks which constitute their primary source of food. The measure of a man’s wealth is in terms of livestocks and children.

The piercing and stretching of earlobes is common among the Maasai. Women wear various forms of beaded ornaments in both the ear lobe, and smaller piercings at the top of the ear.

As a historically nomadic people, the Maasai have traditionally relied on local, readily available materials and indigenous technology to construct their housing. The structural framework is formed of timber poles fixed directly into the ground and interwoven with a lattice of smaller branches, which is then plastered with a mix of mud, sticks, grass, cow dung or urine, and ash.

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