NAVAJO SHAMAN PICTOGRAPHIC RITUAL BOOK

MS 4606
MS Short Title NAVAJO SHAMAN PICTOGRAPHIC RITUAL BOOK
Text NAVAJO SHAMAN PICTOGRAPHIC RITUAL BOOK, WITH SEQUENCE NOTATIONS, INDICATIONS FOR CHANTING AND DANCE MOVEMENTS AND MNEMONIC DRAWINGS OF LISTS OF SYMBOLS, REPRESENTATIONS, SANDPAINTING, AND SHAMANISTIC RITUALS
Description MS in Navajo on paper, Arizona, U.S.A., ca. 1900, 18 pp.+66 blank ff., (-15), 26x20 cm, 420 symbols, pictographs and drawings of shamanistic rituals.
Binding U.S.A., ca. 1900, cover missing, sewn on 6 cords.
Provenance 1. Shaman family and heirs, Navajo reservation, Arizona; 2. Bruce Ferrini, Akron, Ohio.
Commentary This MS represents the very rarest type of North American Indian pictographic writing, since shamanistic rituals were not meant to have been recorded or revealed. 3 sand paintings are drawn, one with 4 pictographic wideboards, which are written invitations to the deities for their presence at the chant ceremony. The sandpainting is completed in one day and is destroyed after the ceremony. This is one of the few cases where the Medicine man (Shaman or Chanter) has recorded the sandpaintings himself. They are otherwise known through later tapestries and whites' recordings. Uniquely, this MS also records the procession route along 2 series of sandpaintings and other objects.
Place of origin Arizona, U.S.A
Dates ca. 1900

Location