a typical koshur household, the kangir continues to be the main, inexpensive
source of keeping an individual warm during the winter months. A kangir
is made up of two parts. The outer part is an encasement of wicker. Inside,
there is an earthen bowl-shaped pot called a kondul. The kondul is filled
with tsini (charcoal) and embers. A medium sized kangir holds about a pound
of tsini, and its fire lasts for over six hours. Many Kashmiris fill a
kangir with toh (chaff) or (guh') lobar (dry cowdung). A kangir is a constant
comapnion of Kashmiris during the winter months. It is normally kept inside
the Kashmiri cloak, the ph'aran, or inside a blanket if the person does
not wear a ph'aran. If a person is wearing a jacket, it may be used as
The origin of the kangir is not known. Knowles (1885) makes the following observation:
pha:gun o:y za:gun tso:y, ka:gri:,
tsithir o:y mithir p'oy, ka:gri:.
vah'ak o:y rah'akh kati:, ka:gri:,
ze:th o:y bre:th gayakh, ka:gri:,
ha:r o:y la:r leji:, ka:gri:,
sra:vun o :y ya:vun su:ruy, ka:gri:,
ba:dirp'ath o:y vadir peyi:, ka:gri:,
a:sid o:y ka:sid su:zmay, ka:gri:,
ka:rtikh o:y na:ritikh lazmai, ka:gri:,
mojiho:r o:y koji lajay, ka:gri:,
poh o:y toh lodmay, ka:gri:.
pha:gun came and a plot was laid against you, hay ka:gri :,
tsithir came and no one cared about you, hay ka:gri:,
vah'ak came and there was no place for you, hay ka:gr:i :,
ze:th came and you became useless, hay ka:gri:,
ha:r came and you were chased away, hay ka:gri:,
shra:vun came and your youth disappeared, hay ka:gri:,
be:dirp'ath came and sickness came to you, hay ka:gri:,
a:shid came and I sent you a messenger, hay ka:gri:,
ka:rtikh came and I put some embers in you, hay ka:gri:,
mojiho:r came and we became concerned about you, hay ka:gri:,
poh came and I filled you up with toh, hay ka:gri:,
The tsa:lan looks like a small 'cake server' and is used to turn the coal inside a kangir in order to increase the heat. It is usually tied to a round wicker hook on the back of the kangir. The expensive kangri have silver tsa:lni with silver chains. An inexpensive kangir has a wooden tsa:lan attached by a string.
The sur' kangir is a small kangir specially made for small children. These vary in their size.
The kondul is a bowl-like pot which holds the tsini, charcoal, and tyongal. The kondal (plu.) vary in size according to the size of the kangir.
The term tsini means charcoal in general, but for the kangri, a special type of charcoal is used. People usually prefer charcoal of bo:ni (chinar) leaves.
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