Polar Bear

Inuit

American

Polar Bear, n.d.

  • Not On View

Stone

Dimensions: 10 in. (25.4 cm)

Bequest of Russell J. Cameron, 1997.25

Polar bears have been used by the Inuit as a status symbol, spiritual guardian, character of myth and legend, and the subject of ritual and taboo, as well as for food and clothing. The polar bear, or nanuq, also has supreme importance in Inuit culture and was considered equal with humans. Besides the importance of the bears themselves, there is great cultural significance attached to the polar bear hunt.

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