- Museum number
Medicine rattle made of hide, animal (tail), feather.
Length: 23 centimetres (excluding feather and tail)
- Curator's comments
- This Cheyenne rattle bears some interesting iconographic features that relate it to cults of great antiquity. In particular the Thunderbird and the 'weeping eye' motif respectively incised on each side the spherical head. The 'weeping eye' motif is associated with themes belonging to the 'Southern cult', a Precolumbian religious complex mostly spread over the Woodlands. Such motif appears in rare shell gorgets found in North Dakota (Howard, John 'The Southern Cult in the Northern Plains' American Antiquity 1953, 19:2) and also in Manitoba.Shell gorgets that display the weeping eye motif are associated with the belief in Thunder beings, which in turn, are related to the power to strike like the hawk. Historic photos of Cheyenne painted tipis confirm the likely provenace of this object. Precolonial shell gorgets that feature this motif, however, are associated with Siouan-speaking groups of the Oneota regional culture.
- Not on display
- Exhibition history
2010 6 Jan-5 Apr, British Museum, Room 91, Warriors of the Plains: 200 years of Native North American honour and ritual
2011 17 Jun-25 Sep, Lotherton Hall, Leeds, Warriors of the Plains
2011 12 Oct-2012 19 Feb, Ulster American Folk Park, Omagh, Warriors of the Plains
- Acquisition date
- Africa, Oceania and the Americas
- Registration number
- Additional IDs
CDMS number: Am1930C3.61 (old CDMS no.)