CHEYENNES (North-American Natives)


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See also: North-America Non-Natives

Cheyenne girls, “famous among all Western tribes for their chastity” wore chastity belts which was assumed upon puberty (Llewellyn and Hoebel, 1941:p176-7, 261)[1][45]. In theory, a girl had no say in marital arrangements; in practice, she sometimes did. However, little boys and little girls court each other in elaborate “camp” play, including going to bed [no sexological inferences are made here] (Grinnell, 1923, I:110-5)[2][46]. A  Cheyenne boy was expected to court a girl over a duration of one to five years, she being courted by five up to twelve young men at the same time (I, p137-8).Formally, for a girl courtship began “soon after maturity”[3]; however, “Chastity was emphasized”. At first menstruation, adolescent females went through a purification ritual.  They were painted red and cleansed with smoke from a fire.  After this, the girl left with her grandmother for four days to live in a small hut outside the village.  The girl’s father publicly announced the important family event to the village and gave away a horse in honour of the event.  After the four days passed, the girl was again purified with smoke and could return[4].



Additional refs.:


-- Hoebel (1960)[5][47]



Janssen, D. F., Growing Up Sexually. Volume I. World Reference Atlas. 0.2 ed. 2004. Berlin: Magnus Hirschfeld Archive for Sexology

Last revised: Jun 2005


[1][45] Llewellyn, K. N. & Hoebel, E. A. (1941) The Cheyenne Way. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press

[2][46] Grinnell, G. B. (1923) The Cheyenne Indians. Vol. 1. New Haven: YaleUniversity Press. Also quoted by Llewellyn and Hoebel (1941:p245), op.cit.

[3] Berthrong, Donald J. (1975) The Southern Cheyennes.Norman, Okla.University of Oklahoma Press

[4]Grinnell, George Bird.  Cheyenne Woman Customs.  American Anthropologist.  September, 1902 Vol. 4 (3): 13-16.

[5][47] Hoebel, E. A. (1960) The Cheyennes: Indians of the Great Plains. New York: Holt, Rinehart & Winston, p37