Dr. Nawa Raj Subba
Kirat Limbu community has about 375 surnames or family names (LimbuPeople, 2021). One of them is Samba.
According to the assessment, the Samba family has got 18 family names. Some words may be duplicates, and others may need to be noticed. Of course, a new study could update the figure.
With such a large number, all of Samba’s ancestors may be the same. In this case, however, blood-related brothers and adopted brothers (Misalbhai/ Manasputra) are brothers within the family.
According to several accounts, Samba’s clan include Chongbang, Lunghimba, Phenchhangwa, Phyang, Kaidangba, Mikkendang, Maden, Tangdappa, Sreng, Mudenchang, Tesyeba, Wetneba, Paksamwa, Tumsamwa, Leguwa, Sambahang, Sambahang, Sambahang, Sambahang, Sambahang, Tapmaden, and Hinahang Samba (Chongbang, 2009; SambaMingshra, 2018; Sembu, 2014; Tumbahang, 2011).
So yet, only the Chongbang, Mudenchhang, and Phyang Samba lineages are available. However, according to three genealogical studies, the Chongbang, Lunghimba, Phenchhangwa, Phyang, Kaidangba, Mikkendang, Maden, and Tangdappa are the closest ancestral branches.
Mangena yak is their ancestral home in Mewa Khola Samba village, Lingthang Yak. They belong to the Kashyap Gotra (tribe), the Kanshi Gotre (tribe), or the Kashi dynasty (Thulung, 1985; Chemjong, 2003a). Samba Phyang is connected to Shreng, Sulungen/ Solingen Samba, Tammaden, Labung, Mudenhang, and Mifengen Samba. All of whom are Sambasherang’s descendants (SenChobegu, 2007).
According to history, the Samba family’s evolution is lengthy and varied. Samba’s ancestors settled in Mewa Khola and Tamber Khola between the first and fifteenth centuries BC (SenChobegu, 2007; Pandeya, 2013). As a result, Samba tribes and families arose in the Mewa Khola and Tamber Khola regions of Taplejung, Nepal’s eastern Himalayan district.
They then spread in various directions throughout time. We can now declare that most Samba families have been tracked down to the status of blood-related and adopted. However, a lot of Samba families require additional ancestral research.
It is interesting to note that Munahang, the Mudenchhong Samba’s ancestor, was a member of the Tibetan King Mawarong’s invasion of Nepal in the seventh century. He had shown the route to the Yangmak, the Tamber Khola River’s source. He traveled with Mawarong to Yangmak, then south to Taplejung to expand the organization in the Kirat nation.
Mudenchhong Samba is formed from the words Muden Lamba Hang-saba, who arrived from Tibet leading a King. Evidence shows that Munahang, who crossed the Mewa Khola River, developed the Mudenchhong Samba family. Their offspring got the name Mudenchhong Samba (Mudenchhong Samba, 2007). Kharbathak Papung is their Mangena Yak (Mabuhang, 2012). Hence, they are known as the Lhasa Gotre (route/ tribe).
Families with various Samba surnames live in the Taplejung district’s Mewa Khola and Tamber Khola areas. Before the Ten Limbuwan, Shreng Samba, Samluppi Samba, Paksamba, and Samba resided in the Tamber Khola region, according to Kirat Limbu history (Chemjong, 2003a).
According to Changbang Samba’s Pong Mundhum, Shreng Samba, Chongbang Samba, and Phyang Samba, all share their exact origins (PhyangMB, 2019). Analysis of this Mundhum reveals a relationship between the Samba ancestors of Mewa Khola’s Shreng, Chongbang, Phyang, and others.
History also shows that Mewa Khola and Tamber Khola were the ancestral sites of PakSamba and TumSamba, who now reside in the Phedap Chhathar Phakchamara region. However, they intentionally set themselves apart from the Samba of Mewa Khola and Tamber Khola by using the surname Sanwa (Sawa) instead of Samba (Yakso & Yakso, 2016).
Similarly, the Samba of the Leguwa tribe resides in the Panchthar district’s Leguwa neighborhood. They claim to be decedents of Samba Hang, who historically ruled the Mewa Khola and Tamber Khola regions (H. S. Samba, personal communication, September 5, 2019). They write Samba. In Nepali writings, it sounds different.
The pronunciation and character of the word Samba vary due to geographical and temporal influences. However, according to the author’s analysis, the relationship or etymology of the sound of Samba/ Sanwa/ Sawa/ Saba found in written speech should be Samba/ Saba/ Shiva initially.
Therefore, it is vital to recognize the old sign while understanding the etymology of the noun Samba. However, this writer argues that the Samba family surnames originated in the Kirat Limbuwan, Mewa Khola, and Tamber Khola regions and expanded from there.
Samba appears as a family name in this book and is the same word as a priest, Phedangba/ma. It may perplex the reader. Kirat Limbu wishes to differentiate between the family name and Shaman. As a result, the sound related to Shaman Phedangba is Samba, and Samba phonetic ease to the particular family name (seems the difference in Nepali); yet, Mundhum shows that Shaman Samba descended from a Samba surname.
Samba’s term was distorted as it translated from the Limbu language to Nepali and from Nepali to English. This word has become confusing due to media manipulation and individual personalization. A dozen Samba dialects have used phonetic distinction to distinguish themselves in different places and times.
The Kirat Limbu group has had a writing tradition for about a century. The writing of the Samba word after the writing tradition introduced variations or distortions. It is a challenging task.
The respective populations are becoming more aware of their culture. Therefore, on August 4, 2018, the Sambas’ umbrella organization, ‘Samba Mingsra Sangchungbho,’ was founded in Dharan. Chongbang, Lunghim, Phenchngwa, Phyang, Koidangba, Mikkendang, Maden, Tangdappa, Mudenchng, and Leguwa are represented in Sangchungbho.
Sangchungbho’s mission is to protect and promote the Mangena Yak Lingthang Yak, located in Mewa Khola Samba Ward No. 4. The meeting’s objective is to safeguard and promote the stone Lingthang Yak worshiped by the Sambas’ ancestors, Phembunhang. In addition, the organization’s mission is to protect the ancient ancestral meeting site Hangchumlung and the Phangfangden waterfall and research Samba ancestry.
Kirat history refers to Mewa Khola in the Taplejung district of Nepal as a Sambahang-ruled region. Later, Samba was the name given to Kirat Limbu, a region resident originally from somewhere else. A place will be a toponym if it denotes a family’s name or surname. According to tradition and history, the Mewa Khola and Tamber Khola regions of Taplejung are where the Samba surname originated and developed.
Senehang was Samba’s ancestor, according to genealogy. Four Senehang brothers moved from Koshi Barahakshetra to Sanguri Peak, Dhankuta, Panchthar, and Tehrathum in 1388 Vikram Samvat. Senehang and his two brothers arrived at Tamber and Mewa Khola. The Samba family evolved and extended into the Samba surnames there (Chongbang, 2009; Yonghang, 2011; SenChobegu, 2007).
Senehang arrived in Mewa Khola and Tamber Khola from the Kirat and Lichchavi periods. Their descendants and adoptive brothers have grown into a family of 18 Samba members. One of them is Phyang Samba. According to the data, more than a dozen branches of Samba currently exist and are not the same as Samba’s biological children.
This family contains a large number of biological brothers, as well as several adoptive brothers. Chongbang, Lunghimba, Phyang, and other children of the same biological father, whereas Tangdappa and Mudenchhong Samba are adopted brothers (Chongbang, 2009; Mudenchhong, 2007).
Senehang grew into numerous Limbu ethnicities. According to genealogy, Yonghang, Jabegu, Lingden, Thebe, and other names were descended from Senehang in the Panchthar, Taplejung, Tehrathum, and Dhankuta districts (SenChobegu, 2007). During the same period, Senehang, which entered the Mewa Khola and Tamber Khola, created Samba tribes such as Chongbang, Phyang, Lunghim, and others.
The facts above are supported by ancient history from India and Nepal. Between 1700 and 1500 BC, Arya traveled to Sapta Sindhu and India. They arrived at the East Sindh River’s banks. At that point, the Kirat Asuras had already established a prosperous kingdom. Samba was an eminent Kirat-Asura king then (Nahar, 1956b; Mabohang & Dhungel, 1990).
It is stated in Rigveda Richa 2.13.6. “Yah Shatan Shambarsya” refers to destroying one hundred Samba- Shambar and Namuchi. Those were samba-related events. In a battle, the Aryas vanquished Kirat Asura King Samba. The Kirat-Asura monarch and his followers fled east after being defeated in battle. They created a Kinnar State there (Sankritiyan, 1951).
Kinnar is currently known as Himachal Pradesh in India which is seen west of Nepal on a map.
Many Mongols arrived from the north during the Devasura War. Kirats and Mongols shared ancestors such as Asuras, Das, and Maruts. As a result, a massive Kirat race arose. They spread southward after migrating from there (Chemjong, 1961).
Naturally, the Ganges River was the primary route for human migration to the Ganga Plain and Assam. Because of the lush terrain, the population spread quickly. The Kirat took this route and eventually settled in Nepal (Chemjong, 2003a).
That is how the Samba ancestors’ voyage was demonstrated by history and genealogy.