Fuegians


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Fuegians

 

the aboriginal population of Tierra del Fuego (South America).

The Fuegians comprise three Indian tribes: the Alacaluf (self-designation, Halakwulup), Yahgan (self-designation, Yamana), and Ona (self-designation, Shelknam). The chief occupations of the Alacaluf and Yahgan are gathering various mollusks and hunting sea animals (sea lions, seals, whales), otters, and guanacos. The Ona hunt guanacos, fox, geese, and sea animals.

In the middle of the 19th century there were as many as 10,000 Fuegians, but their numbers declined rapidly as a result of the seizure of their lands by Argentinian and Chilean sheepherders and gold prospectors. By the late 1950’s and early 1960’s, there were approximately 150–200 Alacaluf and only 40–50 Ona and 40–50 Yahgan.

The Ona language belongs to the Chon language group. Although their languages are different, the Alacaluf and Yahgan have similar cultures. Shamanism and sorcery play an important role in the religion of the Fuegians.

REFERENCE

Narody Ameriki, vol. 2. Moscow, 1959.
References in periodicals archive ?
The most noteworthy part of the photo was the goofy grin on the Fuegians face as if to wonder what all the fuss was about.
Lucas Bridges, a British missionary among the Fuegian Indians born in 1874, with many other historical and perhaps more dignified images, some of which illustrated my article.
Yakut; and finally, the New Hollanders and the Fuegians (the aboriginal
It encompasses the cultures of the entire planet, of the Fuegians as well as the French, of the Paiute as well as the Persians.
Of course in the depth of the winter they had the opossum or kangaroo rug of sewn skins; but these were not placed on their persons from motives of modesty; for like the Fuegians they shifted the garment as the wind blew (Backhouse.
Captain Robert FitzRoy, master of the Beagle, took these passions to the extreme, when, his whaling dinghy having been stolen, he kidnapped four Tierra del Fuegians and brought them to England to be transformed into respectable Christians and upright citizens.
The experiment fails when the Fuegians start having sex with each other (the girl 'Fuega Basket' was 14 years the junior of the man 'York Minster' who was only 24 himself).
Keynes R (2002) Fossils, Finches and Fuegians, Charles Darwin's Adventures and Discoveries on the Beagle, 1832-1836.
He found the luxuriant Brazilian rain forest "a chaos of delight," discovered the bones of a Megatherium that created a sensation on arrival in London, marveled at the difference between the "savage" Fuegians and "civilized man," rode across the pampas, and climbed the Andes.
One of the Fuegians had been taken to London, educated, and entered into elite society.
By 1908 there were barely 170 Yamana Indians alive, by 1947 there were only 43, and fewer than 150 surviving pure Fuegians of any tribe, with roughly the same number of mixed race.