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Record 1 2017-09-25


Subject field(s)
  • Indigenous Arts and Culture
  • Treaties and Conventions

A belt of varicolored wampum arranged in patterns and used as a mnemonic device or ceremonially especially in the ratification of treaties.


Each of the Mohawk communities of Kahnawake, Kanesatake and Akwesasne has a cultural centre which administers a museum and a library. Ancient Iroiquois artifacts, such as False Faces, and handicrafts such as wampum belts can be found on display at the museums. False Faces are carved wood masks which are utilized by the False Face society of the Hotinonsonni during spiritual ceremonies. Wampum belts were given and received at treaties of peace as seals of friendship.


wampum: beads of polished shells strung in strands, belts, or sashes and used by North American Indians as money, ceremonial pledges, and ornaments.

Key term(s)
  • belt of wampum


  • Arts et culture autochtones
  • Traités et alliances

D'anciens artefacts iroquois, comme les faux-visages, et autres objets d'artisanat, tels les ceintures wampums, sont exposés à ces musées. Les faux-visages sont des masques de bois sculptés que portent les membres de la Société des faux-visages des Hotinonsonnis lors des cérémonies spirituelles. Les ceintures wampums représentent quant à elles des gages d'amitié échangés pour sceller un traité de paix.


Campo(s) temático(s)
  • Artes y cultura indígenas
  • Tratados y convenios

Como símbolo de amistad, todos los pueblos indios que habitaban entre los grandes lagos y la costa oriental de los Estados Unidos tenían en gran estima el cinturón wampum. Las perlas con las que lo construían las sacaban con mucho trabajo de una especie de conchas de las que el dicho cinturón tomaba el nombre de "wampum-peage", que en lengua algonquina significa "el cinturón hecho de perlas de conchas".

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