Buffalo Robe Starburst Design
Artifacts Group 1 / Group 2 / Group 3

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Plains Indian Buffalo Robe with Starburst (Warbonnet) Design.

Lakota (Sioux)

A buffalo robe served as both a coat and ground cover for sleeping. In cold weather, the wool side was toward the body which allowed the painted side to be seen. Personal robes always had the head and legs intact with the ears pulled inside. The narrow diamonds of the starburst design represent feathers or coup which are earned by striking an enemy. Therefore this pattern is also called a "warbonnet" design. The symbolism of this robe is that a man should prove his bravery by attempting to earn as many feathers as represented on the robe. The painted areas of the head and legs (below) refer to the internal organs of the buffalo in a stylized fashion.

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Plains Indian Buffalo Robe with Starburst (Warbonnet) Design.
Plains Indian Buffalo Robe with Starburst (Warbonnet) Design.

 

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