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Artefact of the day 14/8

August 15, 2012

The artefact of the day was found by Sanni in the new square that will bind the tunnel and the side room from 2010 together. It is a harpoon rest. It would have been fastened to a kayak to hold the harpoon when it was not used. This harpoon rest has a little smiling face carved into it on one side. The other side is carved as a paw or a four fingered hand with a hole in it. In Yup’ik believes four fingered spirit beings; tunghat, lived in heaven. Their hands reached out to contain all the animal spirits with them in heaven, but some of the animal spirits escaped to earth through the holes in their hands, thus ensuring the continued existence of animals on earth. The holes represent the door to the spirit world. This little harpoon rest gives tribute to the spirit of the seal.

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