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Fish spear

kapisuun “tool to spear with”
Language: Central Yup'ik

Also called:
kakisuun “tool to spear with”
Language: Central Yup'ik

Also called:
fish harpoon

Ukisngaluku una kuik. Patuluni-ll’, tua paturraarluni utaqaluni. (Make a hole in the river [ice]. Cover yourself, and after you cover yourself, wait.)

—John Phillip, Sr., 2002

This instrument for spearing whitefish or pike originally had a long wooden handle. John Phillip, Sr. remembers using this kind to jab whitefish through a hole in the ice. Fishermen covered themselves with a skin or blanket made it easier to see into the dark water.

Culture: Yup’ik
Region: Bristol Bay, Alaska
Village: Ugashik
Object Category: Fishing
Object Type: Fish spear
Accession Date: 1887
Source: William J. Fisher (collector)
Museum: National Museum of Natural History
Museum ID Number: E127769