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Head ornament

Mapuche head ornament
ca. 1975
Trumpulo Chico, Chile
Wool, ostrich feathers

This headdress is worn during the Choyke Purun, or Ostrich Dance, during the Ngillatun (Pleading Ceremony) and Machitun (Healing Ceremony). Young men selected by Machi (religious leaders) to dance symbolize the Mapuche people’s close association with nature and the spirit world. The dancers help the Machi plead for benevolence from the Mapuche’s ancestors and deities.

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