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The Culture of the Luiseño Indians, by Philip Stedman Sparkman, [1908], at


The root of Chenopodium Californicum was grated and used as soap, also the bulb of soap-root, Chlorogalum pomeridianum. The fruit of the wild gourd, Cucurbita foetidissima, is broken open when ripe, and the inside rubbed on articles to be cleaned.

A white clay is used to wash the head with; it is thought to be beneficial for dandruff.

The pilaxpish or deer-antler tool for flaking stone arrowheads has been mentioned.

A chisel was also made from deer antler. The base of the antler formed the butt of the chisel, which a stone hammer was used to drive. An antler as straight as possible was selected.

Tobacco pipes, hukapish, were usually made of clay, and had no stem, a person, it is said, lying down to smoke. One kind of pipe had a stem, but this seems to have been used only at religious festivals.

A rattle, paayat, is made of one or more land-turtle shells, with choke-cherry stones or certain seeds inside.

A rattle was also made of a number of deer hoofs tied on the end of loose strings. This was formerly used by hunters at a ceremony performed by them before going to hunt deer, with the idea of insuring their success.

Necklaces of deer hoofs, also of bear claws, were sometimes worn at certain dances.

A mat of reeds or rushes was made by perforating and passing twine through them. One was three feet by two feet nine inches, and had four rows of twine. In this mat were rolled up the articles used at religious ceremonies by the chief of festivals, not only his own, but also of the other members of his clan.

Until quite recently a large receptacle was made for the

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storage of acorns. Where boulders of sufficient size were near the dwelling, the receptacles were placed on top. Otherwise they were put on platforms of poles. They were made in a very rough manner of coils of willow, Adenostoma fasciculatum, or other plants. These receptacles have generally been called acorn granaries. The mouth is covered with a flat stone. They are said to have held eight to twelve bushels.

A bullroarer, momlaxpish, consists of a flat stick with a double string passed through a hole at one end. When the string is twisted tightly and the stick swung around the head it makes a loud humming noise, and is used to call the people together at feasts.

Several ornamented sticks were used at religious ceremonies. One of these, paviut, had a pointed crystal inserted in one end, and sometimes bits of shell glued to the sides with pitch a little below the crystal.

There seems to have been no musical instrument except a rude flute, widolish. This was made from a piece of elder wood with the pith removed. Specimens seen were about twenty inches long, and had four holes.

A popgun of elder wood was made as a plaything for boys.

A syringe was made of the bladder of a deer and a piece of cane, the bladder being inflated and then pressed with the hands to eject the contents.

Several herbs are used to make tea, which is used partly as medicine, and also as a beverage by people who are not ill. The tea is made by steeping the plants in boiling water. The plants are sometimes used fresh, but are oftener dried. The bird-claw fern, Pellaea ornithopus, is one of the plants used for this purpose. Another is Micromeria Douglasii, a creeping aromatic plant of the mint family growing in the shade of trees. Another plant of the mint family, Monardella lanceolata, is also used.

A tea was made from several different plants that were bitter and acted as emetics when the throat was tickled with a feather. Emetics were formerly much used.

The Luiseños made no intoxicating drink of any kind whatever, the stupefying jimson-weed, Datura meteloides, being used for religious purposes, not inebriation.

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