This is a Pawnee Indian shown in ceremonial dress.
Click on image for full size
Image is now in public domain. It was originally published by Powell, J. W. Twenty-Second Annual Report of the Bureau of American Ethnology - Part 2. Washington: Government Printing Office, 1904.


According to the Pawnee Indians, the world was created by the god Tirawa who assigned to the stars the task of supporting the sky. Moreover, some brighter stars were in charge of the clouds, the winds and the rain in order to ensure the fertility of the Earth.

But some lesser stars became jealous of the more important role of the brighter stars. Once the jealous stars found the sack of storms entrusted to the brighter stars, they emptied it, sending deadly storms to Earth. From this accident, death was introduced in the Earth.

The Pawnee Indians believe that the first woman was born from the marriage of the stars, and the first man from that of the Sun and the Moon. This primeval couple represents the first ancestors of the Pawnee Indians. To this day, the Pawnee still use painted star maps to remember their many mythological stories related to the constellations.

Last modified October 20, 2010 by Julia Genyuk.

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