Bund of corn stalks faces

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The corn stalks faces are a mask covenant of the Iroquois - Indians .

Together with the Federation of False Faces , they are among the most famous of these. They have their own tobacco incantation, medicine song and dances of their own. And they have the power to heal. The straw masks (husk-faces) are also called "bushy-heads". These represent other, earth-bound, supernatural beings who have made a pact with humanity. They showed people the art of hunting and farming. The leaders of this loosely organized society acted as water doctors. They tried to heal the sick by sprinkling them with water. Two corn stalks faces operate at the Midwinter - nave -Zeremonien for false faces as doorkeeper.

The straw masks can be maliciously described as door mats. The only difference is that the masks have eye and mouth holes. And hair is still attached.

According to legend, the straw faces are a peasant people who live in a ravine on the other side of the earth. Once a year they visit the Seneca longhouses for two nights. This happens during the midwinter ceremony. When they come, they stop the dances and kidnap a chief as an interpreter . As messengers of the three sisters, the beans , the corn and the pumpkins , they have great power.

See also


  • William N. Fenton: Masked Medicine Societies of the Iroquois , in: Annual Report of the Board of Regents of the Smithsonian Institution, 1940. Washington: United States Government Printing Office , 1941
  • Arthur C. Parker: Secret Medicine Societies of the Seneca , in: American Anthropologist, Col. 11, 1909, pp. 161-185. New York: Kraus Reprint Corporation, 1962