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The Religion of the Luiseño Indians of Southern California, by Constance Goddard DuBois, [1908], at


The sand-painting was used also in the ceremony of Unish Matakish, 34 the burying of the feathers of a Chungichnish initiate.

When a man died who had drunk toloache in his youth, if he still had in his possession the feather head-dress, sacred stick, paviut, and other ceremonial implements, the chief of his "party" or clan would go and get these objects and bury them.

Many of the features of the toloache fiesta were repeated.

The chief calls the people, and gets out the tamyush and all the sacred objects. He cleans the tamyush—they are buried in the ground when not in use—and paints them and sets them all together. They have two places, as in the Mani. In one place they prepare these things; and in the other they make the sand-painting. This has a gap to the north, and the rattlesnake is

p. 93

painted near the gap. Tukmul, the winnowing basket, is represented in the painting, too. It is Chungichnish. 35

After everything is ready, the Paha calls out three times; and they come marching and singing a solemn recitative. The chief who made the sand-painting takes the feather head-dress, and the other things to be buried, in his hand, and goes ahead of the others as they sing the Chungichnish songs which mention the stones and sacred objects, always ending with tamyush.

They sing as they reach the main place where the sand-painting is. The feathers and objects are placed in the central hole of the painting, and are buried by pushing the sand slowly forward, obliterating the painting and filling the hole at the same time, to the accompaniment of a recitative invocation.

The Chungichnish songs, sung at this ceremony, are not subject to the law of clan ownership, but may be sung by all, as they do not belong to any one family or party. No one composed them. They were made and given by Chungichnish himself.


92:34 Yunish, burying of an initiate's ceremonial feathers; matakish, grinding stone.—S.

93:35 This description evidently refers to the form of boys’ sand-painting given by Salvador Cuevas.

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