Thursday, September 13, 2012

USA - Idaho - A Nez Perce' Child

This adorable child, dressed in ceremonial finery for a Pow Wow, is a member of Nez Perce' tribe that has populated the valleys of the Snake and Clearwater rivers for centuries. This famous tribe is known for its friendship and generosity to early explorers such as Lewis and Clark, and for the breeding and development of the Appaloosa horse, a symbol of the state of Idaho.

Sent by Sandra, a postcrosser from Idaho, USA.

This is from Wikipedia : The Nez Perce are Native American people who live in the Pacific Northwest region (Columbia River Plateau) of the United States. An anthropological theory says they descended from the Old Cordilleran Culture, which moved south from the Rocky Mountains and west in Nez Perce lands. The Nez Perce nation currently governs and inhabits a reservation in Idaho. The Nez Perce's name for themselves is Nimíipuu (pronounced [nimiːpuː]), meaning, "The People."
They speak the Nez Perce language or Niimiipuutímt, a Sahaptian language related to the several dialects of Sahaptin. The Sahaptian sub-family is one of the branches of the Plateau Penutian family (which in turn may be related to a larger Penutiangrouping).
Nez Percé is an exonym given by French Canadian fur traders who visited the area regularly in the late 18th century, meaning literally 'pierced nose'. The most common self-designation used today by the Nez Perce is Niimíipu. "Nez Perce" is also used by the tribe itself, the United States Government, and contemporary historians. Older historical ethnological works use the French spelling "Nez Percé," with thediacritic. The original French pronunciation is [ne pɛʁse], with three syllables.
In the journals of William Clark, the people are referred to as Chopunnish (/ˈpənɪʃ/). This term is an adaptation of the term cú·pʼnitpeľu (the Nez Perce people) which is formed from cú·pʼnit (piercing with a pointed object) and peľu (people). When analyzed through the Nez Perce Language Dictionary, the term cúpnitpelu contains no reference to "Piercing with a pointed object" as described by D.E. Walker. The prefix cú- means "in single file." This prefix, combined with the verb -piní, "to come out (e.g. of forest, bushes, ice)". Finally, with the suffix of -pelú, meaning "people or inhabitants of". Put all three parts of the Nez Perce word together now to get cú- + -piní + pelú = cúpnitpelu, or the People Walking Single File Out of the Forest. Nez Perce oral tradition indicates the name "Cuupn'itpel'uu" meant "we walked out of the woods or walked out of the mountains" and referred to the time before the Nez Perce had horses. Nez Perce is a misnomer given by the interpreter of the Lewis and Clark Expedition at the time they first encountered the Nez Perce in 1805. It is from the French, "pierced nose." This is an inaccurate description of the tribe. They did not practice nose piercing or wearing ornaments. The actual "pierced nose" tribe lived on and around the lower Columbia River in the Pacific Northwest and are commonly called the Chinook tribe by historians and anthropologists. The Chinook relied heavily upon salmon as did the Nez Perce and shared fishing and trading sites but were much more hierarchical in their social arrangements.

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