The Co-tu have nearly
37,000 people inhabiting in Hien and Giang
districts of Quang Nam-Da Nang province and
A Luoi and Phu Loc districts of Thua Thien-Hue.
Their other names are Gao, Ha, Phuong and
Ca-tang. Co-tu language belongs to the
Mon-Khmer Group. The Co-tu believe in Giang
(Genie) and worship Giang.
Living in the Truong Son range, the Co-tu
practice slash-and-burn cultivation and dig
holes to put seeds in. Apart from rice, they
practice animal husbandry, cloth weaving and
basketry. Food gathering, hunting and
fishing are also very common. The exchange
of products is carried out by barter.
In the Co-tu village, the houses are set out
in the form of an ellipse. In the middle of
the village is the rong (communal house), a
large and beautiful building which towers
over all the other dwellings. This house is
the place for reception of guests, to hold
meetings, rituals and cultural performances.
It is also here that the elders spend most
of their time recounting their memories.
Co-tu attire is
simple. Men wear loincloths and leave their
upper torsos naked. Women wear skirts and
short vests. In winter they wear a piece of
The popular ornaments comprise necklaces,
bracelets and earrings. The traditional
customs such as tattooing face and body,
filing teeth and men wearing their hair long
tied in a chignon have gradually declined.