Tingguian derives from the term Tingue, which means mountaineers. Tingguian, therefore, refers to "The People of the Mountains". Itneg is what the Tingguians are known in the Samtoy (Ilocano) dialect.
Tingguians have practically no government to speak of because their communities are relatively small and easy to govern, they are peace-loving people and a semblance of authority exists, with a council of elders wielding authority. These elders are known as Panglacayen. They rule collectively through a council.
Tingguians have a common culture, custom, costumes, rituals, beliefs, idiosyncrasies and ethnic values with only slight variations. They wear their hair in a tuft on the crown of the head. Itneg women wear necklaces, antique jewelry and are tattooed. Their attires are multi-colored, notably the Batik kind. Physically, they are fine specimens and their noses are aquilin.
Itneg music is provided by musical instruments such as gansas (gongs) and cymbals. Their dead are buried in an upright posture, mostly sitting. In marriage, the dowry is an inevitable feature, and weddings are often characterized by lengthy and prolonged celebrations- the longer the more prestigious. Cows, carabaos, goats, dogs, deer, wild boar, and chickens are slaughtered for feasting of the entire populace. Basi, local wine made from sugar cane, is also given for special occasions.
The religion of the Tingguians revolves around beliefs pertaining to creations and superstitions centering on anito, an omnipotent being which exercises absolute control over human kind. Itnegs regard Bagatulalyan as their supreme god, who has absolute control over the behavior of his subjects and punishes anyone who disregards his laws and commands. He is followed by Kadaklan, who enforces decreees of Bagatulalyan to the letter. The third-ranked Tingguian deity is Kabonian, who is the benevolent one.
The various Itneg groups have their own regular trademarks. The Banaosmade their reputation in agriculture, deriving their livelihood from what the soil yeilds. The Banaos are in municipalities of Daguioman and Malibcong . Masadi-its are nomadic in existence, they are the kaingeros in the tribe. The Masadi-its are found in Manabo, Bucloc, Sallapadan and Boliney. Another subtribe of the Tingguians are the Maengs. They are the ranchers and they are found in towns of Tubo, San Isidro, Villaviciosa, and Malibcong. The Mabacas are the game hunters and fishermen. They are found in Lacub and Malibcong. The Balatocs are perhaps the Tingguian counterpart of the Tubo tribe of Mindanao wilds for being the skilled craftsmen. They carve mortars, grinding stones, cast bolos and similar impalements. Binongans are summate romantics, they are carefree, they are more pre-occupied with their guitars and musical instruments. Other sub-tribes are the Adasen which are found in Dolores, Langilang, Sallapadan and Tineg. The Gubangs are found in Malibcong and Tayum. While the Danak is relatively a small group, they are scattered throughout the province of Abra.
Nid Anida, Death of Culture
Encyclopedia of the Filipino People