Edward S. Curtis (1868-1952)

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Edward S. Curtis - Plate 149 Spotted Bull - Mandan border=
Title:
Plate 149 Spotted Bull - Mandan
Date:
1908
Size:
Portfolio, 18 x 22 inches
Medium:
Vintage Photogravure
 
from Volume V in "The North American Indian" by Edward S. Curtis:

"No more impaired than the Mandan material culture were their religious and ceremonial beliefs and practices. Nothing had yet shaken their faith in their own gods. As the bird instinctively builds its own nest to meet its own needs, the Mandan had formulated their religion to fit the requirements of their life, and were strong in precepts. Their well developed political organization enabled them to execute effectively the tribal laws.

The society organization of the Mandan is worthy of particular notice. The system comprised seven societies, or lodges, though which a man passed successively, beginning with the Fox order. The usual age of entrance into this grade was eighteen to twenty years, and no one younger than fifty years was permitted to enter the Bull society, the sixth organization of the system. To become a member of this system one had first to purchase the rights of a member of the lowest order before passing successively through the others. This could not be done individually, but only when it was arranged that the whole society purchase the right of the next highest one."
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