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Kachina Doll (Poos’hum)

Arts of the Americas

Poos’hum Kachinas appear during the spring planting season (Hakitoonmuya). They bring seeds of all kinds that have been blessed by the gods. Sometimes Poos’hum Kachinas are also called upon to help with the sprouting of young seedlings. The markings on this doll’s cheeks represent corn seeds.


Los Kachinas Poos’hum aparecen durante la estación de siembra en primavera (Hakitoonmuya). Ellos traen semillas de todos los tipos que han sido bendecidas por los dioses. A veces los Kachinas Poos’hum también son llamados para ayudar a que las pequeñas semillas broten. Las marcas en las mejillas de esta muñeca representan semillas de maíz.

CULTURE Hopi Pueblo
MEDIUM Wood, pigment, feathers, fiber, string
DATES late 19th century
DIMENSIONS 11 1/2 x 9 x 2 1/2 in. (29.2 x 22.9 x 6.4 cm)
COLLECTIONS Arts of the Americas
MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
ACCESSION NUMBER 04.297.5604
CREDIT LINE Museum Expedition 1904, Museum Collection Fund
CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION This Kachina is probably Poos'hum, a seed bringing kachina. He appears in the villages around the time the fields need to be planted. He brings seeds of all kinds that have been blessed by the supernatural gods. The squares along his cheeks of his face indicate the corn seeds. Both ears appear to be reattached. Feathers on top of head in poor condition. This kachina doll is carved from one piece of wood. The body is painted red with one yellow stripe and one blue down each side of the chest. The arms have yellow sleeves. The face mask is painted with slit eyes and trisected by red on one side, blue in center, yellow on other side. It has tattered feather headdress. Originally Stewart Culin, collecting curator, thought this kachina was Ma'alo but it does not have the characteristic face or ears of that kachina.
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