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Part 7— Feather Braided Chief and the Gambler
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Story 11—
Origin of the Purification Ceremony and the Strengthening of Medicine Men

When the people saw the clouds they were happy. One old woman worked to make a dish and a water cup for Siuuhu, so when he got home, he would eat from the platter and drink from the cup. Others made a shade [ramada] for him, so when he got home he would go under it to rest. And when he


came home he did so, because it was the season they call moo-ee-he-bik (burning heat).[h]

He stayed four days under the shade without drinking water or eating food, and the nights were four without water or food. When the fourth day was about finished, Siuuhu was ready to pass out. The old woman came and saw him in that condition. She put some water in the cup, placed it beside him, then put her hand under his head, and raised it. She sang:

I'm going to give you
Some bright water
Which will make your heart shine.

She raised his head onto her knees and sang (same as before). Then she raised his head still higher, onto her shoulder, and sang (same as before). When she finished the song, she made Siuuhu drink the water. Since his strength was almost gone, the water nearly choked him, and he almost passed out. When he came back to consciousness, he told the people about the mountain where Eagle lived, and how there was much blood on the mountain, and how it has a bloody smell. He told them to call it "Cliff that smells like blood."

Then he made a rule for the Pimas and Papagos, that whenever they have wars with the Apaches, when


one of them kills an Apache, he must go without food and water for four days. And at that time he prepared some eagle feathers for Pima medicine men to use in working over a sick person. He also prepared the fine, white, soft down feathers and gave them to the medicine men to use in praying for rain. When he completed all this work, he started for home.

From then the people continued to multiply, and the understanding of the sy-juukum and makai increased.

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Part 7— Feather Braided Chief and the Gambler
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