Native American Spider Gorget
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Round marine shells with spider designs carved onto them. The shells are about 3" in diameter. Gorgets are pendants worn at the neck like jewelry or as throat armor. Spiders figured in at least two Native American mythologies. In one they were the first creature on earth, symbolizing life; in another, the spider carried fire on its back to the earth. The spiders carved into these shells are rendered so accurately that they can be identified as Orb Weavers. Only about twenty gorgets decorated with spiders are known to exist, and these are two of the three found at the Crable Site in Southern Illinois. The shells themselves probably came from the Gulf of Mexico and would have been traded from one native culture to another as rare objects. How we learn about communities; American communities in history; Native American Stories 16 History; 18 Social Systems; 15 Economics
|University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign|
|University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, University Library|
Indians of North America
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