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Impearls: HIC 6.2.8: Ceremonials

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Earthdate 2005-11-12

Ceremonials   by A. L. Kroeber

The Wiyot did not make the White Deerskin dance.  They made the Jumping dance only at or near the village of Shepola on Mad River, apparently much as the Yurok made it, and with many visitors from the Coast Yurok.

A dance of somewhat different type, but reckoned as equivalent to the Deerskin dance, was made at Hieratgak, on the North Spit of Humboldt Bay.  This was held in a house for five days.  A woman stood in the middle of the line of dancers, some of whom wore obsidian blades hanging from the neck, instead of carrying them as among the other northwestern tribes.  A Yurok account puts this dance at Olog and has it visited by the more southerly of the Coast Yurok.

The dance on Eel River is entirely unknown.

The adolescence ceremony for girls was well developed.  For 5 or 10 days the maiden sat covered in the house fasting.  Each night the people danced.  At the conclusion she was taken by a number of women into still salt water.  They stood waist deep facing the shore in a line and bent forward in unison to the song, sending a miniature breaker up the beach with each sway.



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