VII. Fishing, Hunting, and War
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
sinkers, stones are employed, while the floats are made of wood or birch-bark. A long seal-skin thong, the use of which has been borrowed by the Russian settlers from the Koryak, serves to set the net. At each end of the seine this thong extends about fifteen metres. One end is left in the hands of the "shoremen," — that is, of the fishermen who remain on the bank of the river, — while the other end is kept in the boat in which the whole seine is placed. As the boat glides gradually away from the bank to the middle of the river, the seine is cast. Then the boat describes a semicircle against the current; then it turns slowly about towards the bank, the net having first been pursed. During this process the "shoremen", following the current, which carries along
both the net and the boat, must move along the bank down the river. When the seine has been pursed, the oarsmen h ul the boat ashore, and, with the help of the shoremen, gradually pull it in by both ends, and throw the fish into the boat after having stunned them with a club. The boats used by the Russians on the Gishiga River are of the Yukaghir type, and are made of poplar-wood.
The Maritime Koryak have not adop- ted the seine-fishery of the Russian settlers. They use nets, — the same kind as the y evidently employed before the arrival of the Russians, — tackle, hooks, harpoons, and traps.
Fig. 70 Outer End of Salmon-Net,
with Swimmer and Sinker. Height of
net, 180 cm.; diameter of sinker,
14 cm.; length of swimmer,
Nets are made of nettle-fibre or sinew-thread. They are of the types of casting- nets, hand-nets, or dip-nets. Casting-nets for dog-salmon and humpback salmon (Fig. 70) are made of nettlethread. They are from twelve to fourteen metres in length; in width, from twenty-nine to thirty meshes, the sides of the meshes measuring from three to five centimetres. Disk-shaped sink-ers are made of whale-vertebrae, and flat floats of drifted larch-wood are used. The thong to which the net is fastened is made of thong of the ringed-seal. The net is pushed into the water by means of a pole from twenty metres or more in length, (Plate xxvii, Fig. 2), made up of several pieces scarfed together, the joints being held by a winding of thong. To push the net out, the end of the pole is placed in a loop in the thong, by
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
purpose three stakes are driven into the bed of the river, to two of which the front sticks of the net are tied, so that the mouth of the double net is kept wide open, while the point of the net is tied to the third stake. Through the first funnel-shaped bag the fish is carried by the swift current
into the second, closed bag, from which it cannot escape. The fish is taken out by untying the bottom of the net, and then sha- king it out.
Fig. 74 represents a hand-net on a frame. As shown in the illustration, the net is strung on a stout thong which is attached to the frame, being held in place by being tied to it through a number of perforations. The free farther left-hand end of the thong passes through a perforation in a cross-bar of the frame, and it seems the net is pursed by- letting go of this string. In the illustration the specimen is shown tied by strings to the cross- bar. These, however, are probably taken off
Fig. 73. Fyke. Length of net, about 110 cm.
when the net is in use. Plate XXVII, Fig. 2 shows how the Koryak, standing in the water, hold the hand-net. The photograph from which it was made was taken on the sea-shore, near the mouth of the Ovekova River. Just before the tide begins to come in, the dog-salmon gather near the mouth of the river, ready to enter with the tide, and in such numbers that large quantities are caught even with hand-nets. During low tide the mouth of the river dries up. Only shallow rivulets remain, through which the river- water flows into the sea. A number of families of the Taigonos Reindeer
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK
Koryak and nomadic Tungus fish at the mouth of the Ovekova River every summer. The hand-net is netted of nettle-thread, and is called krivda (кривда) by the Russians, and colpi'na by the Koryak
The Russianized Koryak at the mouth of the Nayakhan River employ a bag-shaped hand-net, one half of the opening of which is tied at its ends to
a pole. The fisherman, standing up to his knees in water, drops the net into the river, while holding the free end of the pole with his hands. The Koryak make a hand-net of reindeer-sinew for the purpose of catching tom-cod in small rivers. When it is in use, one fisherman stands in the water and holds the net, while another drives the fish into it.
Fig. 75 represents a scoop-net for Salmo socìalis and herring.
|Fig. 75 Scoop-Net. Longgest diameter of hoop, 48 cm.|
The fish are simply scooped up with it. Salmo sociahs comes in such dense
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
masses, that every time the net is dipped into the water and hauled out again, it is full of fish. As stated before, however, the run of Salmo socialis does not last more than about seven days. In the years when herring enter the mouths of Koryak rivers, that fish is also quite numerous, but it does not come in such masses as Salmo socialis. In Fig. 76, a and b represent fishing-tackle for catching torn-cod in
Fig. 76. Fishing- Tackle; c, d, Ends of a and b enlarged. Length of rods, 88 cm.
winter through ice-holes in the mouths of rivers and in bays: a was obtained in the village Kuel; b, in the village Itkana. The fishing-tackle consists of a wooden rod, a wooden or bone handle, a curved tip prettily carved out of reindeer-antler, and a fish-line twisted of thread made of the sinew of the white whale. The fish-line with hook and sinker is passed through a hole- made in the upper bone end of the rod (Fig. 76, c and d). The other end of the line is wound around the projection on the handle, and is paid out as needed; and in this way the angler, without rising from his place or moving the fishing-rod, can pull his line out from the ice-hole, with the fish
Jesup North Facific Expedition, Vol. VI. Plate XXVIII.
Fig. i. Woman Fishing.
Fig. 2. Hunters bringing in White Whale.
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
caught.1 The sinker is now made of lead, and the hook of iron ; but in olden times the sinker was of stone, and the hook of bone. Plate XXVIII, Fig. 1, represents a Koryak girl, muffled up in a winter overcoat, sitting with fishing-tackle on a bag spread out by the ice-hole. Near by lie a pile of tom-cod, a club for stunning the fish, and a ladle or shovel for clearing the ice-hole from ice.
In Fig. 77 a, is illustrated such a shovel made of deer-antler, and fastened to a stick by means of thongs. The length of the handle enables
77. Ice-Scoops, Length 94 cm., 103 cm.
the angler to clear the ice-hole without leaving his position. Fig. 77 b, represents a ladle made of the horn of a mountain-sheep, which is sometimes used instead of a shovel. The catch of tom-cod from under ice is particularly abundant in the mouths of rivers in the beginning of winter. Women, girls, and boys engage in angling. Thickly studded with ice-holes, and muffled figures sitting near them, the river presents an odd appearance. At Itkana, in the fall, men too engage in fishing tom-cod, which is then particularly abundant in Itkana Bay.
Fig. 78 shows a tackle used for the salveline and grayling. The line is twisted of sinew-thread. Another hook used for flounder, cod, and sculpin, has a stone sinker and a bone barb.
Fig. 79 shows an iron hook (kiyi'ki) for dog-salmon. Its lower end is tied with a strip of skin to a long pole. When the sharp end of the hook has caught the fish, the hook slips off from the pole after the manner of a harpoon, and remains hanging on a long line, the end of which is shown in the illustration. Such hooks are widely used by the Tungus, from whom I believe the Koryak have borrowed them. On Plate XXVI, Fig, 2, is shown a boy with such a hook, on the seashore. A similar hook of smaller size is used by the Koryak for salveline. In olden times the Koryak employed bone hooks and barbed harpoons to catch fish. In excavating ancient under- ground houses I found fragments of such implements.
The Maritime Koryak build hardly any weirs (ai'pai), nor do they set
1 A somewhat similar contrivance is found in the fishing-tackle of the Alaskan Eskimo (cf. Nelson, p. 175).
OCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
traps made of willow. In the sea and in the lower parts of rivers this method of fishing is impracticable, but in mountain-rivers traps and weirs are employed by the Reindeer Koryak.
Skin Boats. — The skin boat of the Koryak (Russian, baydara; Koryak, ga'twaat or ne'lge ga'twaat; literally, "of hide a boat") is construc- ted after the type of the Aleut, Eskimo, and Chuk- chee skin boat. A woo-den frame, lashed toge- ther with thong and there- fore possessing great elasticity, is covered withseal or walrus skin. The Koryak skin boat is
|Fig, 78. Fishing-Tackle. Length of hook, 6.4 cm. Fig. 79. Fish-Hook made of Iron. Length, 12 cm|
distinguished from the others by several peculiarities of form and construction of the frame. In proportion to its length, it is very wide; and at both ends
of the frame, bows are tied to the rails of the
boat, giving both prow and
a semi-circular shape (Fig. 80), while in the Chukchee and Eskimo
boats the ends of the rails, converging at the prow and stern, are
joined by cross-bars only.1
1 Compare Bogoras, The Chukchee, Vol. VII of this series, p. 128; Nelson, Plate LXXIII, Fig. 38.
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
The keel or central timber (cï'leq, "backbone"), shown in a, is made of a single long timber bent upward in the direction of the prow, after the fashion of a sledge-runner. The fore-end of the prow terminates in a fork, through which the harpoon-line is passed when the harpoon is hurled at a sea-mammal. Sometimes this fork, on which a human face is carved to serve as a protector for the boat, is made of a separate piece of wood, and is tied with thongs to the upturned fore-end of the keel. At the stern the central timber is turned up at an angle (a'). Generally the stern post is made separately, of the lower part of a tree and its root, which join at a right or obtuse angle, according to the kind of tree selected. The bent stern post is then fastened to the central timber by means of thongs, which pass through drilled holes. The bottom of the skin boat is formed by the flat part of the central timber and the lateral curved double beams on either side (6), the ends of which are fastened to the central timber aft at the angle of the stern, and forward at the place where the keel begins to curve upwards. To the flat bottom of the frame belong also the cross-bars (c), which are fastened by thongs passing through holes in the central timber (a) and the two side-beams (b).
The sides of the boat are formed, in the first place, by the ribs (d). The mid-ribs passing from the curved side-beam (6) are shorter than the ribs which issue immediately from the central timber (a) near the prow. These also form a more obtuse angle with the bottom than do the mid-ribs. The ribs are fastened with thongs to the curved lateral bottom beams (b) of the boat on its inner side, and to the central timber and to the gunwales (e) on the outside. The wooden frame is further strengthened by the rails (f), which run along under the gunwales, and are fastened to the inside of the ribs, and the double longitudinal cleats (g), which are fastened to the ribs both on the inside and on the outside. The outer cleat is of one piece; while the inner one consists of separate pieces, and is not continuous. They serve both to strengthen the frame and as steps to avoid treading on the skin covering while boarding the boat, and to prevent the cargo from pressing against it. Both forward and aft a bow is attached to the rails (f), which rests on the inner side of the frame, against the upturned central timber. Thwarts for the oarsmen (h) rest on the rails (f), and are tied with thongs to the gunwales (e). At the prow and stern semicircular boards also rest on the rails (f). They are tied to the bows of the gunwale. At the stern this board serves as a seat for the steersman, while that at the prow (2) is the seat of the harpooneer. The model represented in Fig. 80 has the following measurements: —
Greatest width of front board (i) 22.0 cm.
Greatest width (19 cm. afc from the stem) .... 26.5 cm.
Width at ithwart............................................................................... 26.3 cm.
Width at 2d thwart.......................................................................... 25.0 cm.
68—JESUP NORTH PACIFIC EXPED., VOL. VI. PART 2.
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Width at thwart.................................................................... 23.0 cm.
Width at stern thwart.......................................................... 21.0 cm.
Length from stern rib (d') to main rib (ä").......... 69.0 cm.
Greatest width of bottom.................................................... 14.0 cm
Height from main beam to thwart................................. 8.0 cm.
A boat in the village of Kuel that was considered large, which I measured, had a length of nine metres, and a maximum width between the gunwales of two metres and a half. The maximum width was not in the middle, but nearer to the stern. The Koryak boats of Penshina Bay are considerably wider in proportion to their length than the Chukchee1 and Eskimo boats. The boat mentioned by me had thirty ribs on each side, approximately twenty- five centimetres apart. The usual number of thwarts is four or five for eight or ten oarsmen, — two oarsmen to each bench. Men as well as women row. The thwarts are mostly situated aft, leaving the forward part free. The freight is placed in the middle of the boat, for which purpose the thwarts are far apart at that place. The prow, where the ribs are fastened to the central timber, is somewhat narrower than the stern part, and the prow is a little higher than the stern. In Kamenskoye the prow projects upward more (see Part I, Plate vii, opp. p. 80) than in the boats on the Paren, where the model was made from which Fig. 80 was drawn.
On the coast of Bering Sea, boats are covered with walrus-hide; on the coast of Okhotsk Sea, owing to the absence of the walrus there, the boats are covered with skins of the thong-seal. The skin of the walrus is first split, as it is too thick. At present, even in Bering Sea, the practice of covering boats with the skins of thong-seals is spreading, largely owing to the disappear- ance of the walrus. The skins of the thong-seal are dressed and the hair is removed. The cover is sewed together with very close stitches. Before being drawn over the frame, it is soaked in the river or in the sea. Then it is pulled over the frame so that the edges extend upward over the gunwale. Then the edges are folded over the gunwale. No far from the edge a number of slits are made, through which stout thongs are passed by means of which the cover is tied to the rails (f)- (see Figs. 81 and 82). After the cover has been put on, the boat is turned upside down and dried, so that the contracting cover presses the wooden frame tightly together. Then the seams are filled with fat, and the whole cover is greased with seal-oil, so that it may not get wet in the water, and the skin boat is launched into the sea. Fig. 81, drawn from a model, represents the side-view of a skin boat with cover on. The oars have long rounded blades. Instead of the rowlock,
measurements of the
maximum width of the large Chukchee skin boat brought by
Mr. Bogoras are 11.5 metres and 1.5 metres respectively (cf. Bogoras, The Chukchee, Vol. VII of this series, p. 127).
2 Compare the same process in Boas, Central Eskimo, Fig. 480, p. 528.
3 On the festival of the launching of the skin boat, see Part I, p. 79.
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they have an ingenious device, which is also found among the Central Eskimo.1 The oar is placed in two crossing thong loops, which are attached to the rails. To prevent the oar from slipping in the loops, it has two wooden projections with notches, into which the loops are laid. One loop lies in the
upper, the other in the lower notch. The loops are fastened to wooden guards, which cover the gunwale and protect the skin from the friction of the oars (Fig. 82). Among the Eskimo the guards are made of bone.2
The Koryak have not as yet adopted the rudder, but steer with an oar. The blade of the stern oar is shorter but wider than the blades of the ordinary oars. Usually one half of the blade of the stern oar is made of bone of whale, which is sewed to the wooden half by means of small thongs.
The Koryak are better sailors than the Kamchadal, but still they cannot be called real seamen. They do not undertake long voyages, and rarely sail far away from the shores. In summer they often cross Penshina Bay (the inhabitants of Kamenskoye sometimes sail on to the Itkana), but such trips are made in calm weather only. With all their elasticity, the skin boats cannot withstand stormy seas. In times of stormy or foggy weather the men do not venture out, because the danger of tearing the skin cover on rocks is too great. When a rent of considerable size is torn in the skin cover, the boat sinks instantly. Small holes or openings that are caused during the voyage, near the water-line, are caulked with grease, and the travellers try to reach the shore as quickly as possible. Wooden scoops are employed for bailing out the water.
The Koryak have a rectangular sail made of dressed reindeer-skins sewed
1 Compare Boas, Central Eskimo, Fig. 481, p. 528. 2 Compare Boas, Central Eskimo, p. 529.
JOCHRLSON, THE KORYAK.
good hunters, or families to which several hunters belong, can keep boats. Every year the cover of the skin boat requires mending, and must be replaced in parts. A large boat requires from fifteen to twenty seal-skins, each of which has a market-value of from five to six rubles. The ratio of the number of families possessing a skin boat to the number of those without one is not the same everywhere. For instance, on the Itkana, out of seventeen families, eight had no boats; while in Kamenskoye out of thirty, nine had none. The hunters of families without boats go hunting with the owners of boats, and then share the game with them.1
Kayaks. — Small skin boats for one man are made by the Koryak of Penshina Bay. They are of the kayak type, like those of the Aleuts and of the Eskimo from Greenland to Alaska. Mr. Bogoras says that kayaks are unknown among the Chukchee on the coast of the Pacific Ocean.2 The Koryak kayak (ma'to) differs from that of the western Eskimo in some respects. It is shorter; the round manhole is not covered, and occupies the entire width; and prow and stern are of the same shape (Fig. 83). The skeleton of the
kayak is made as follows: A strip of wood curved upward somewhat both fore and aft serves as the "keel." To both ends of the keel the ends of curved poles, which serve as rails, are tied with thongs. As the keel is curved in a vertical plane, with its convex side downward, while both rails are in a horizontal plane, the rails lie on a level with the keel only at their points of junction, while at all other points the rails lie higher than the keel. For
1 See Chapter XIII. 2 See Bogoras, The Chukchee, Vol. VII of this series, p. 126.
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
this reason the ribs which join keel and rails slant upward. Thus the cross- section of the bottom of the kayak has the form of an obtuse angle. Thin boards fastened with thongs to the inner sides of the ribs, and running the full length of the kayak, between the rails and the keel, give additional strength. The deck is formed by cross-bars running from one rail to the other. The manhole is near the middle of the deck, which is also strength- ened by longitudinal strips. The manhole is formed by an oval hoop. A broad board lying at the bottom of the boat under the rear end of the manhole serves as a seat, which is usually covered with a piece of sealskin. Like the skin boat, the kayak is covered with thong-seal skins. Ordinarily two skins, the hair of which is not always removed, are sufficient. After the kayak has been covered with skin, the manhole is placed in position. The cover is so cut at the manhole as to leave enough material to turn in the edges, which are sewed around the hoop by means of thongs.
The kayak is very light, so that it can easily be lifted with one hand. The weight of one is 32 pounds. Its length is 269 cm. and its maximum width (i. e., the diameter of the manhole) is 75 cm. Its height is 28 cm.
Near the prow and the stern of the kayak, skin handles are sewed for pulling it out of the water, either upon shore or upon floating ice, or for carrying it across promontories. In certain settlements only a double-bladed oar, like that of the Eskimo, is used with these kayaks. It is held with both hands, in the middle, and the two terminal blades are used alternately. In Itkana and Paren two paddles with short handles are used, the blades of which have on one side pieces of bone of whale sewed on, which look like fins. These small oars are 41 cm. in length. They are tied to the rim of the manhole with a thong one metre in length, so that they can be dropped into the water or placed within the kayak while casting the harpoon or while shooting. With these short paddles they row alternately with right and. left hand, bringing their hands down almost to the level of the water.
Sitting in the manhole, the hunter can stretch his feet under the deck of the kayak. In the kayak he places the harpoon-heads, the throwing-board, the bag with the harpoon-line, and his arrows. In the hold of the kayak are kept the harpoon-shaft, spears, and gun. When making ready for an attack on sea-animals, the hunter places the harpoon on deck, first thrusting the end of the shaft into a skin loop which is sewed to the deck of the kayak near the prow.
The progress of the kayak in calm weather is extremely fast; but its use is not without danger, as it is easily upset by wind or waves, and it is necessary to balance it carefully while paddling. In stormy weather the Koryak do not venture upon the sea in kayaks.
Dug-Outs. — In the settlement of Kamenskoye and in northern Kam- chatka dug-out canoes are also used, like those employed by the Yukaghir
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
and Kamchadal, who have no skin boats. These canoes are called struzhok (стружокъ) by the Russians, and yañca'atwat or yañiya'atwat by the Koryak. They are hollowed out of poplar or aspen trunks by means of an adze, and are so well made that they are not heavier than skin canoes.1 The dug-out is propelled with a double-bladed paddle, while in shallow and rapid rivers it is punted with two short poles. The dug-out is rather a river-boat; but the inhabitants of Kamenskoye, and the maritime Koryak of northern Kam- chatka, go out in them on the bays to hunt seals, like the Kamchadal.
kind of dug-out, but for river use exclusively, is that called bat
by the Russians, or elle'ut by the Koryak. It is about twelve metres long,
or longer, narrow, and heavy, roughly hewn, and hollowed like a trough.
is in use also among the Kamchadal, but is not met with among the
This boat is used mainly for crossing rivers and for trips up and
rivers. It is built for two persons on the prow and one at the stern,
who use long poles for punting, When fish are caught on the bank opposite a village, they are taken across in such boats. For ferrying cargoes and men across the river or floating them down the river, a catamaran is made of two such boats, which are joined by means of a bridge (Fig. 84). A double boat
of this kind is very convenient for freighting, and is quite safe. Whenever the Koryak fish in the river, above their village, they descend with their families and their catch in such crafts when the fishing is over.
Hunting of Sea-Mammals. — Among the palaeasiatic tribes, the seden-tary Yukaghir alone live by fishing exclusively. The Kamchadal engage in fishing principally, and hunt very little for sea-mammals. Among the Maritime Koryak, as among the Gilyak, the hunting of sea-mammals is of great import- ance, although at present in most of the Koryak settlements fish is a more important staple food than sea-mammals. In former times the hunt for sea- mammals was more important among the Koryak than it is at present. Like the Eskimo, the Maritime Chukchee continue to hunt principally sea-mammals, and fishing plays a secondary role in their household economy.
Seal-Hunting. — Seal is the mammal most extensively hunted, especially
1 Further details concerning dug-out canoes will be found in the monograph on the Yukaghir.
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
in Penshina Bay. The following species are found in Koryak waters: (I) ground-seal, or bearded seal (Erignatus barbatus; Koryak, mémel; Russian, nerpa or lakhtak), the largest of seals, measuring from 2 metres to 2.6 metres in length; (2) spotted seal or Okhotsk seal (Phoca Ochotensis; Koryak, keli'lin; Russian, larga); (3) ringed-seal (Phoca hispida; Koryak, wi'twit; Russian, akipa), the smallest of seals; and (4) ribbon-seal (Hìstriophoca fasciata; Koryak, esgi'es; Russian, krylata). The last-named seal inhabits only Bering Sea; but an old man from the settlement Kuel told me that once he had caught a ribbon-seal which had incidentally entered Penshina Bay.
Ground-seal and ringed-seal are hunted the greater part of the year, except during the winter months. When the coast-ice breaks up, early in June, and the rivers carry masses of ice into the sea, thong-seals and ringed- seals are fond of lying on ice-floes, on which they are killed from skin boats and kayaks. When the river-banks are clear of ice, the thong-seals like togo ashore in bays and river-mouths and bask in the sunshine, or they lie on the banks after high tide. But the principal hunting-season for thong and ringed seals is in autumn, — in September and in the beginning of October. Then the seals enter the river-estuaries, evidently in the wake of the fish which ascend the rivers to winter there. In autumn, when the coast-ice begins to form in the gulfs, thong and ringed seals again enjoy floating on ice torn away from the coast by the tide or the wind.
The spotted seal appears early in June, soon after the rivers are clear of ice, near the shores, and enters the estuaries, ascending in small numbers with the flood-tide, and returning with the ebb-tide; but with the beginning of the dog-salmon run, after the 14 th of July, the spotted seal, at flood-tide, follows the salmon into the rivers in shoals, in pursuit of the fish, which, in their endeavors to escape them, jump out of the water. Here and there the seals are seen thrusting their heads out of the water, quite often holding a fish in the mouth. In the month of June, when the run of the dog-salmon begins, I made a boat journey from the Gishiga River to the Nayakhan River, and saw all the rocks in this part of Gishiga Bay covered with spotted seals basking in the sun. We approached in our boat quite close to these little islands. Though the sea was perfectly calm, the incessant deafening cries of seabirds, particularly of the numerous varieties of gulls, drowned the noise of the oars, and the seals noticed us only when we wereat a distance of some thirty metres from them. As soon as they saw us, however, in an instant they rolled, grunting, off the rocks into the sea. In autumn the spotted seal leaves the coast. The main hunting-season thus coincides with the run of the dog-salmon.
In winter, beginning with the middle of October, the hunting of seals ceases. The Maritime Koryak of Penshina Bay and Bering Sea do not resort to the method practised by the Eskimo, Chukchee, and also by those Gilyak
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
who live between the mouth of the Amur and Saghalin, of watching for seals on the ice near the breathing-holes, or of placing nets near these holes he sea does not freeze over in winter to any extent, and the narrow strip of coast ice is often torn away by the wind. The violent winds of winter and the floating ice make trips in boats in winter dangerous or impossible. For this reason there is no seal-hunting in winter either in the open sea or on the ice. It is only by chance that every now and then a thong or ringed seal is killed that goes astray on the coast ice or crosses over an isthmus between two bays. In Gishiga Bay, where many coves freeze over to a much greater extent than the open coasts of Penshina Bay, seal-hunting in winter at breathing-holes would probably be possible. In excavating old underground houses of the Maritime Koryak south of Gishiga I found, amono- other fragments of bone implements, a round piece of antler of a fawn. According to my Russianized Koryak companions, it might have served as an ice-scratcher, such as are employed by the Chukchee and Eskimo in seal- hunting in winter.1 At the present time, with the exception of the Russianized oryak of the settlement Nayakhan, there are no Koryak villages on the coast of Gishiga Bay; while the Russians and the Russianized Koryak hunt for sea-mammals only incidentally, even in summer.
At present, guns, nets, and harpoons are employed in hunting thong-seal. Though guns, as will be seen later, are nowadays common enough among the Koryak, they are used but little in seal-hunting. In deep water a seal, if it is not very fat, sinks immediately when killed by a bullet; if only wounded, it escapes. In shallow water, when hunted with the gun, it must be killed on the spot, else the wounded seal will succeed in getting away to the sea. Not infrequently even a seal killed outright is carried out to sea by the current of the river or by the tide, and cannot be found after the water has receded.When detained by a gale in Atykino Bay2 for five days, we hit spotted seals many a time with our Winchester and Berdan rifles, but only two of them were found at low water. The gun is of service only when the seal is ashore and far away from water.
In summer and autumn, when seals enter the river-mouths and bays, they are hunted with nets. In autumn, seal-nets are set up mainly to catch thong-seals. The net is netted of thongs made of the hide of thong-seals. Fig. 85, c shows three meshes of such a net and the method of making the knots. The length of the side of a mesh is 23 cm.; the length of the whole net, 13 metres; its height, 14 meshes. These nets are placed in riverestuaries or on the beach. They are set at low tide by driving into the ground a ow of stakes (Fig. 85, b), to which the nets are tied. The floats (Fig. 85,a,
See Bogoras, The Chukchee,
Vol. VII of this series, Fig. 36, b, c, p. 199.
Bay lies midway between the mouths of Gishiga and Nayakhan Rivers (See Plate
XXIX. Fig. 2).
69 -JESUP NORTH PACIFIC EXPED., VOL. VI, PART 2.
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
are made of wood. Thong-seals become entangled in the nets when retur-ning to the sea at ebb-tide. The hunters go to the nets before low water,and with bone mallets or clubs hit head and nose of the seals that are entangled in the meshes.
|Fig. 86 represents a mallet used for stunning seals. It is made of bone of whale, and the handle is of wood. Its length is 52 cm. This mallet is also used for killing seals that have fallen asleep on the shore.|
to the present the harpoon has remained the
principal weapon for hunting seals. Before learning the use of iron, the Koryak used to make harpoon- heads (Koryak, yiyi') for seals of bone or ivory. Fig. 32, a-c, given by Mr. Bogoras,1 repre- sent types of har- poons similar to those of the Es-kimo. Closely re- lated to these is the type of Ko- ryak harpoon shown in Fig. 87, c, and in Fig. 92. The princi-ple of both of these specimens is the same as that of the Es-
Fig. 85. Details of Seal- Net. Size of mesh, 47 cm. a, Swimmer;
b, Stake; c. Part of net.
kimo harpoon-head with blade parallel to the barbs. The back of the large harpoon-head is slightly keeled, and the barb is strongly curved and provided with a notch. An ornamented specimen of this kind is shown in Fig. 191, c. It is a characteristic trait of these specimens that the loop by which the harpoon-
1 Bogoras, The Chukchee, Vol. VII of this series, p. 116.
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK
point is attached to the line is tied firmly to the foreshaft. In all specimens the barb of the harpoon-point is held to the foreshaft by a loop which passes over the harpoon-head and over the thong loop by means of which the harpoon-head is attached to the harpoon-line. The latter loop is also attached to
|the foreshaft, which has a perforation for this pur- pose near its lower end. When the harpoon strikes the animal, the small loop which holds the barb to the foreshaft slipps off and the toggle-head comes off; without, however, being|
disengaged from the foreshaft, to which it is held by the small loop which passes through the perforation near the base. Two of the small harpoons here described have a screw cut into the base, evidently to give to the point
87. Harpoon- Heads, a(70/3598), Harbed bone harpoon length of point, 16.5 cm.);
b ( 70/3281), Small barbed bone point (length of point, 5.8 cm.); c (70/3750),
Bone harpoon with iron blade and foreshaft (length of point, including
foreshaft, 12 cm.).
a better hold in the end of the harpoon. The occurrence of the screw in this position is interesting when compared to the screw devices used by the Eskimo in similar positions.1
The bone harpoon shown in Fig. 87, a, is evidently related to this type, from which it differs in not having a separate harpoon-head and foreshaft. It is evident, however, that the perforation at the base, through which the line loop passes, corresponds to the small perforation in the type of harpoon described before. The modern iron harpoon shown in Fig. 88, c, is closely related to the bone harpoon just described, from which it differs only in the arrangement of its barbs. To the same type belong the iron harpoons figured by ogoras.2
Globus, Vol. 79, p. 8; Bulletin American Museum of Natural History, Vol. XV, p.
The Chukchee, Vol. VII of this series, Fig. 32, f, g, p.
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
Related to this type are also the round barbed points shown in Fig. 87, b, and the one shown by Bogoras,1 the attachment of which is the same as that of the preceding specimens, while the barbs are arranged symmetrically all around the round point. The model shown in Fig. 88, a, is an imitation of a harpoon that has been in use for some time among American whalers, and which is characterized by its movable hinged joint.
The use of the remaining specimens shown in Figs. 88 and 89 is not quite certain. Fig. 88, b, represents a head that has probably been used with an arrow or a lance. The base of the bone part is hollow for a distance of a little over one centimetre, and would fit the end of a wooden shaft. The four barbs on the bone end have their sharp points turned forward, and therefore do not hold the head in the wound, but would only tend to tear the sides of the wound. The two specimens shown in Fig. 89 also seem to be heads of arrows or lances.
At present bone harpoon-heads are not infrequently made use of, but most heads are of iron or consist of two pieces, — an iron blade inserted into a bone point.
The harpoon-line, which is about 18 metres long, is made of the hide of a thong-seal. It is coiled up and kept in a small round basket woven of grass or nettle-thread. The free end of the line terminates in a loop. Before urling the harpoon, the line is taken out of the basket, and the loop is put on the hunter's left hand ; or it is tied to the stern of the skin boat, if the harpoon is cast from the boat.
1 The Chukchee, Vol VII of this series, Fig. 32, i, p. 116.
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
There are two kinds of harpoon-shafts, — the simple shaft (Fig. 90, a); and a longer one, used with a throwing-board (Fig. 90, b, c). It is curious that the Chukchee employ a throwing-board only for casting the bird-dart.1 On the other hand, the Eskimo of Baffin Land and of Alaska make use of the throwing-board both for the seal-harpoon- and for the bird-dart
The method of attaching the foreshaft and the harpoon-head to the harpoon-shaft is shown in Fig. 90, a. It will be noticed that the line passes through a loop which is inserted in the shaft near its point. The loop con sists of a small strap, and is closed by a button. It will thus be seen that
the harpoon-point, after the animal has been hit, remains attached to the short shaft, which acts as a drag and float.
At its tip, the shaft of the long harpoon has a head made of bone of whale, with a hollow in its upper part, into which the lower end of the harpoon- head is inserted. The shaft tapers down to its butt-end. The throwing- board has two holes. Into one of these, in the handle part, the index-finger of the right hand is inserted; while into the other, in the back, is inserted a bone peg, which is driven into the harpoon- shaft a little behind the middle (Fig. 90, c). The thumb grasps the shaft on the left side, while the other three fingers support it lightly on the right. The bone peg is curved back somewhat toward the butt-end of the shaft to prevent it from slipping off the throwing- board by the weight of the forward part of the shaft and head. It is specially liable to do so, owing to the inclination of the harpoon when hurled from the skin boat. When the harpoon is hurled forward with great force, by means of the impetus given by the swing of the throwing-board, which acts against the peg, the hand quickly lets go the shaft and at once makes a backward movement. The peg is set free, the shaft with its head darts on in the desired direction, and the throwing-board remains in the hunter's hand. After the harpoon-head has been driven into the animal's body, the shaft is set free by the shock, and falls into the water, from which the hunters take it back after the animal has been killed. The seal immediately dives, drag-
1 Compare Bogoras, The Chukchee, Vol.
VII of the series, pp. 145, 146;
Boas, Central Eskimo, p. 496.
2 See Boas, Eskimo of Baffin Land, p. 80; Nelson, The Eskimo about Bering Strait. p. 136.
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
ging the line along, but the necessity of breathing compels it to emerge. Then the hunters endeavor to harpoon it again; but if the seal has been killed outright or severely wounded, it is dragged to the boat and lifted into it by means of hooks.
When ever a hunter has caught a seal on shore, and has not succeeded in cutting off its retreat, he sends a harpoon after it without using a throwing-board. When hunting in kayaks, and in the pursuit of seals basking on ice-floes, both kinds of harpoons are employed, without the throwing-board, or with it; but the former method is in much more frequent use.
On floating ice, seals are hunted both at the beginning of summer and in autumn, when the ice, freezing near the shores, is torn off and carried out to sea. The hunters go out in a skin boat. On noticing one or more seals on a floe, one or more hunters are lowered into kayaks, and endeavor to approach the seal from under the wind, until within range of the harpoon. During this operation the hunters have bags made of the white skins of fawns over their heads and shoulders. If the seals notice the kayak, the hunter stops paddling and lets his white hood still farther down, so as to look like an ice-floe. As soon as the seals have become quiet, the hunter continues his approach. Grasping the harpoon with his right hand, ready for action, he tries at the same time to take hold of the floe, and to pull himself toward it with his left hand by means of a bone hook attached to a long pole (Fig. 91). In case the seal is asleep, the hunter may go up to the
ice-floe in his skin boat, and even climb up from the kayak. In the same manner rocks and islands on which seals lie are approached in kayaks.
Hunters in kayaks cut off the retreat to the sea, of seals which have remained in shallow bays and river-estuaries during ebb-tide.
Winter supplies are principally obtained from the hunt in autumn. The seals caught from early until late in summer, and principally the spotted seals killed during the dog-salmon run, serve for immediate use only. It is impossible to lay by supplies at this season, because the meat decomposes rapidly. Besides, the seals are not very fat in summer.
During the fishing-season the hunters pay little attention to seal-hunting. They are too intent upon catching fish and preparing it for the winter supply. Besides, there is plenty of food in summer. It may happen that
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
from a lean seal only the skin is taken, while the carcass is cast into the sea. In many cases the spotted seal is hunted in summer for its skin only The whole winter supply of seals is obtained in autumn by means of net and harpoon. At this season the temperature is so low that in the night or even by day, the dead seals freeze and can be left in their skins. In autumn the seals are very fat, and when shot with a gun do not sink so easily. The hunters usually make two autumn expeditions out to sea for hunting seal (mainly thong-seal, in part ringed-seal, and very few spotted seals), each expedition lasting several days. Each boat is accompanied by several kayaks, which are either taken aboard or follow on independently
In Kamenskoye and Itkana I collected some information concerning the numbers of seals killed for winter supply by the hunters in the autumn of 1900. The hunters keep no account of the number of seals killed and eaten in summer. In Kamenskoye the inventory made by me, of the autumn hunt of nineteen families, gave a total of 272 thong-seals, or an average of 14.3 to a family; the minimum catch of a family being 3, the maximum, 27. They had hunted ringed-seals as well, but kept no account of them. They were few in number, and part of them were eaten during the hunt. In general, during the autumn hunt attention is paid to the large seals only.
In Itkana I recorded the results of the autumn hunt of seals for the winter supply of seventeen families. There were, in all, 292 thong-seals and 89 ringed-seals, with an average of 17.2 thong-seals and 5.2 ringed-seals to a family. I also learned that 112 thong-seals were caught by means of nets, and 180 were killed with harpoons. It is clear from this that the inhabitants of Itkana were more successful than those of Kamenskoye. This is explained in part by the fact that very little salmon is caught at Itkana, which is situated on a bay with a small river in which the dog-salmon does not run, and therefore they have to content themselves mainly with catching such small fish as the salveline, tom-cod, smelt, and uyo'k (Salmo socialis).
The inhabitants of Kuel and Paren, who obtain large supplies of dog-salmon on the Paren River, are much less occupied with seahunting than those of Itkana, and also less than those of Kamenskoye, who obtain dog- salmon in great quantities. The inhabitants of these settlements live prin- cipally on fish.
Whale and Walrus Hunting. — In former times whaling played avery important part both in Bering Sea and in the Sea of Okhotsk. To judge from the stories told by the Koryak, Penshina Bay used to be rich in whales, which were hunted frequently. This is sufficiently proved by the pre-eminence of the whale festival over other festivals. It is known from ancient records that American whalers visited Penshina Bay as early as the beginning of the last century. Old Koryak still relate how they themselves used to go whaling, but this industry came to an end many years ago. The
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
Koryak say that until lately three American whalers used to go to Penshina Bay every summer, but in the last two or three years only one went. Evidently the whales have left for the open sea to escape being hunted in the bays. While entering Nayakhan Bay 1 in a boat, we saw a great number of whales blowing far away in the mouth of Gishiga Bay. The Koryak do not venture to go whaling in their skin boats in the open sea. During their expeditions they do not go far from shore. In calm weather they cross Penshina Bay only at its narrow part, from Ma'mec to Itkana or from Ma'mec to Kamenskoye. If the Koryak have obtained any whales during the last few years, they have either been dead ones drifted ashore — whales wounded by whalers, but not caught by them, or those that perished from the attacks of the killer-whales — or whales killed by the American whale- men and left to them. In the latter case, the whalers take off the skin, blubber, and whalebone, and, after informing the Koryak, throw the rest of the body ashore, or even tow it to the nearest settlement. The Koryak speak with gratitude of these acts of the American whalers or at-ayim (i. e., "chiefs of the boats"); but probably the rapacious pursuit of whales by whalers is the principal cause of their disappearance from the Koryak bays. In the summer of 1900 the Koryak of Penshina Bay had two dead whales. One was cast out by the sea near the settlement Ma'mec, and the other was taken to the village Itkana by an American whaler, — the only one that year in Penshina Bay. It goes without saying that whaling by foreign whalers in Koryak waters is considered illegitimate by the Russians, and is possible only because of the absence of a Russian cruiser.
Exactly what species of whale the Koryak hunted is difficult to say. The whale which they honored with a festival is called by them yü'ñin. According to their description, this is the largest of all whales, with a skin of dark color and with black whalebone. When killed, the whale does not sink, owing to its blubber. This is evidently the Greenland whale (Balcena mysticetus L.). Another whale is called "diarrhoea-whale" (poqlã'-yü'ñin). It is small, and has white whalebone. The Koryak never hunted it, but ate it when washed ashore by the sea. A third kind of whale is called lu'kula'n, and is met with in the ocean, but never enters the bays. Finally the Koryak are also familiar with the killer-whale (Orca gladiator Gill), which they call "wedge-whale" (wu'li-yü'ñin); but I did not observe that it is an object of cult, as among the Gilyak, who consider it a beneficent spirit, that kills large whales for them. Krasheninnikoff says that the Kamchadal dread the killer-whale so much, that they not only do not kill it, but do not even approach it, for fear that it will upset the boat of the hunter. Whenever they saw a killer-whale approaching their boats, they sacrificed to it, praying that it might do them no harm.2
1 Compare p. 403. 2 See Krasheninnikoff, I, p. 426.
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
Several skin boats joined in hunting the whale. The greatest chance for success was during the spawning-season of small fish, like the uyo'k (Salmo socialis) and other species of smelt, which were pursued by the whales into bays and rivers. Whales were hunted exclusively with a harpoon with stone head. Heads made of bone were not in use. According to the Koryak, the painful wounds inflicted by bone heads did not cause any par- ticular harm to the whale. The rifle-bullets which the Koryak tried to use in whale-hunting, after they had become familiar with fire-arms, would stick in the layer of blubber without causing the whale any injury. Only stone heads, with their numerous irregular facets and saw-like edges, cause deadly lacerated wounds. It is plain that the perfected methods of hunting resorted to by civilized whalers were unknown to and beyond the reach of the Koryak.
92 represents a stone
harpoon-head for whaling (yiyi'). It consists
of a flint blade (a), the lower part of
which is inserted in
head (b), made of the antler of a wild reindeer. The blade
is fastened to the head by means of gum of the larch- tree.
Attached to the head is a thong (c) of walrus-hide, forming a loop below for tying on the harpoon-line. As in
harpoons for seal-hunting, the loop passes through a hole of
the harpoon-head. The wooden foreshaft of the harpoon
inserted in the hole at the bottom of the head, while
butt-end is inserted in the point of the harpoon-shaft,
is made of bone of whale. Into this the wooden end
the harpoon-head is inserted. These parts are joined by a lashing of whalebone, as shown in e. The length of the
harpoon-head here figured is 113
When going out on a hunting-expedition, each skin boat carries one or two harpoon-shafts, one or two harpoon-lines coiled up in grass bags, about half a dozen harpoon-heads placed point upwards in a tall wooden pail, from four to six stone spears, seal-skin wallets containing a change of clothes for the hunter, and a tripod with a sail.
The most skilful hunter is stationed in the bow of the boat. When near to the whale, he hurls the harpoon with all his might. Immediately the whale dives, carrying with
it the harpoon-line and the boat to which the end of the line is fastened. When the whale comes up again to blow, — sometimes after a long time, the hunters in the boats that happen to be nearest endeavor to drive another harpoon into it. When it is tired and worn out from the wounds received in this way, the boats advance nearer and despatch the whale with stone spears (a'uta-qa'mvin) such as represented in Fig. 93. A separate stone
70—JESUP NORTH PACIFIC EXPED., VOL. VI, PART 2.
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
head of such a spear (a'ut) is shown in Fig. 136, a. It is 15 cm. in length. The lower narrow part of the a'ut is fitted into a hollow at the thicker end of the wooden spear-shaft, which is wound with a thong. When the whale is dead, its carcass, which is studded with harpoons and spears, is taken in tow by all the boats that have participated in the hunt, as shown in Fig. 247 and is hauled to the village.
Krasheninnikoff relates1 that in his time the people of Alutor caught whales in the bays in enormous nets made of smoke-dried walrus-hide thongs as stout as a man's arm.2
White whales (Delphinapterus leucas) are hunted in the same way as thong-seals. The white whale (Russian belukha Koryak, yiyi'ñin), too, comes into the bays and river-estuaries with the flood-tide in pursuit of fish, and goes back to the open sea with the ebb-tide. The full-grown white whale measures four metres and upward in length. Not infrequently it runs into the nets set for catching thong-seals. Both sealing-harpoons with iron heads and whaling-harpoons with stone heads are used in hunting white whales. When the white whale is worn out from wounds, it is despatched with a stone spear in the manner described above. If the white whale does not hurry to return to sea with the ebb-tide, while the water is still high, the hunters block the river-mouth in their kayaks, and drive them back into the river by means of shouts and by striking the water with their oars until the estuary becomes shallow and the white whale remains almost high and dry. It is then easily killed with rifles and spears. In this way the Koryak sometimes shut whole shoals of white whales within the river-mouths, as was the case in the summer of 1899, when the Koryakhemmed in sixteen white whales in the estuary of the river Ovekova. Still the number of these animals caught is insignificant in comparison with the enormous quantities found in the Koryak waters. Thus during the summer of 1900 the inhabit-ants of Kamenskoye caught nine white whales; those of Itkana, six; and those of Kuel, only two. Plate XXVIII, Fig. 2, shows how the inhabitants of Kuel haul a white whale caught in seal-nets on dog-sleds over the coast-ice to the settlement. This photograph was taken in the beginning of October.3
See Krasheninnikoff, I, p.
looking over the annual reports of the commander of the district, in the
Gishiga archives I found some
data as to the number of whales killed by the Koryak in certain years, Judging by other statistical data contained
in these reports, these numbers are doubtless also below the actual. A catch of two whales is recorded for 1848 in
Paren, and of two whales in Kamenskoye; for 1856, three whales in Kamenskoye; for 1886, six whales in the
whole of Penshina Bay.
description of festival, Part I, pp. 69-77.
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
I will remark here that seals are hauled from the shore to the village over the ground or ice by means of a thong, which is usually passed through a slit running from under the lower jaw through the mouth. I did not see among the Maritime Koryak of Penshina Bay any small sleds such as are used by the Chukchee and Eskimo for conveying home seals.1
In the Bays of the Sea of Okhotsk there are no walruses and sea-lions nor any ribbon-seals (Histriophoca fasciata). Old people in the village of Itkana told me that they knew of one case of a walrus being caught in Penshina Bay. How reliable this information is I do not know. The walrus in Bering Sea has decreased very much in numbers owing to its incessant unlawful pursuit. They are hunted by the Koryak in the same way as seals, — mainly with harpoons. In former times the Karagha estuary and the bays of Karagha Island were favorite localities for walrusing.
Hunting of Land-Game. — The wild reindeer and the mountain-sheep or Kamchatka big-horn (Ovis nivicola Eschholtz) are the only wild land- animals killed by the Koryak for food. The elk and the musk-deer, which are met with on the southern coasts of the Sea of Okhotsk and west of the Stanovoy Mountains, are unknown in the Koryak territory, at least nowadays. The hunt of wild reindeer is unimportant; and there are few hunters who make a specialty of this pursuit, as is the case among the Yukaghir and Tungus. Besides, the wild reindeer in the Koryak territory are not numerous. The domestic reindeer, for which the best pastures are selected, has pushed the wild herds to the north or to the less favorable pastures of the mountain-chains. They are found in small herds only, on mountain-tops in summer, and in the tundras and river-valleys in winter. On the Palpal Ridge a wild reindeer is found which crosses the Anadyr River and lives in summer on the coast of the Arctic Ocean. Small herds of the migratory wild reindeer reach the most southerly parts of the Koryak territory. The Maritime Koryak rarely hunt the wild reindeer. It is pursued principally by the inhabitants of northern Kamchatka and of the Parapol Valley, and particu- larly by the Koryak on the Palpal.2 Still the hunt is not carried on regularly. In domestic life, as well as in trade, the wild reindeer is of slight importance only. Skins of wild reindeer are not exported from Gishiga; while among the number of reindeer-skins exported from the Anadyr and the Kolyma Rivers the skins of wild reindeer occupy an important place,3 since on these rivers many are killed during their migrations to the north and back.
Like the wild goat, the mountain-sheep is fond of rocky mountain-tops, where it feeds on alpine marshes. It is especially numerous in the Kam-
Bogoras, The Chukchee, Vol. VII of this series, p. 107.
regard to the methods of hunting wild reindeer compare Bogoras, The Chukchee,
Vol. VII of this series, pp. 132-136; Jochelson,
Sketch of the Hunting Pursuits and Peltry Trade in the Kolyma Country (St.
1898), pp. 41-48.
Jochelson, Sketch of the Hunting Pursuits and Peltry Trade in the Kolyma Country,
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
chatka Mountains. It is hunted in the mountains of northern Kamchatka, the Ma'mec Ridge, the ranges of the Alutorsk region, farther to the north, and in the mountains of the western coast of Penshina Bay and the Taigonos Peninsula. The meat and fat of the mountain-sheep are considered a very toothsome dish. The hunt for the animal takes place principally in autumn, when the sheep take on a thick layer of fat, and their skin is covered with new and strong wool. The fur of the mountain-sheep is con- sidered warmer than that of the reindeer. Occasionally the animal is killed in other seasons also. Among the Maritime Koryak of northern Kamchatka there are special hunters who go out into the mountains in autumn and in the beginning of winter to hunt sheep. Some of the Taigonos Reindeer Koryak hunt it succesfully in winter. During my stay on the Topolovka River, in the latter part of April, 1901, two Koryak of the camp in which I lived killed four mountain-sheep. In Kamenskoye I saw a Maritime Koryak from the village Ma'mec who had killed twenty sheep during the winter of 1900-01. The skin of the sheep, like that of the wild reindeer, is not exported. In olden times the sheep was hunted with the bow, but now it is pursued almost exclusively with the gun. Besides its meat and skin, the sheep yields splendid horns (from half to three-quarters of a metre long, following the curvature), which are used for the manufacture of various articles, like spoons, ladles, and cups, and also for carvings.
Hunting of Fur-Bearing Animals. — I will begin my description with the hunt of the bear, for, like the wild reindeer and the sheep, not only its skin is used, but its meat is eaten as well, especially in autumn, when the bear is fat. The brown bear (Ursus beringianus Middendorf; Koryak, koi'ñin) is abundant in Kamchatka, where the rivers are rich in fish. In the oryak territory bears are also quite numerous. In 1899, 380 bear-skins were exported to Vladivostok from Gishiga and Alutorsk.1 In summer, bears are killed when they come down from the mountains to the river-valleys and the seacoast to hunt fish; in autumn, when feeding on berries or when visiting the storehouses of the Koryak to steal the fish stored there for winter use; and in winter they are killed in their lairs. In the spring, when the bear leaves its lair, it is killed only in self-defence. The bear is then lean, and its skin useless; but an encounter with it at this season is not safe for man. In summer and autumn the bear rarely attacks man, usually taking flight on meeting him. It is said that in autumn, when a bear happens to surprise women while picking berries, it merely takes the berries away from them, letting them go unharmed. In summer and autumn the Koryak kill bears mainly with the gun; in olden days they used the bow for this pur- pose. Not infrequently they attack the bear with the spear. In both cases,
1 See Chapter XIII, Trade.
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
hunting-dogs are used, which attack the bear from the rear, make it turn around for self-defence, and prevent it from rushing at the hunter, who is thus enabled to take good aim or to choose an opportune moment for his attack. There are hunters among the Maritime Koryak who train dogs especially for hunting. These are not used in harness. Many of the dogs used for hauling sledges are not only of no help in bear-hunting, but are even a hindrance, owing to their cowardice, since they will hide behind their master. In winter the bear is attacked in its den in the manner common throughout Siberia. The opening of the den is blocked with logs, so that the animal, when awakened, cannot get out. The roof of the den is broken through, and the bear is stabbed to death with a spear or killed with a gun. Snares made of stout thongs are placed near the storehouses. I did not hear of other bear-traps, such as are employed in other parts ofSiberia. I have described before the festival in honor of the bear.1
Foxes, particularly red foxes, are caught in great numbers, and their skins constitute the greatest part of the furs exported.2 Fox-hunting is carried on in various ways, — with dogs, which the hunter sets on the track; by the Reindeer Koryak with reindeer-sledges. It is overtaken, and killed with clubs. Still another method is to drive the fox into its own den or into ahole, from which it is either pulled out by means of a cleft stick, or smoked out. Traps are also employed. These are the self-acting bow, the dead-fall, and the edge-trap with a spring of twisted sinew.3 Shooting foxes with guns is seldom successful. Quite recently foxes have been poisoned by means of strychnine pills, which are scattered about. This method is in use near Russian settlements.
Krasheninnikoff asserts that all traps of the Kamchadal were introduced by the Russians. He states that previous to the arrival of the Russians the Kamchadal did not care for fox-skins, but preferred dog-skins, and that when they wanted to kill foxes, they did so by means of clubs. Foxes were so common that they would come to the troughs when the dogs were fed.4I believe that the same conditions prevailed among the Koryak. Even at present they set fewer traps by far than the Yukaghir and the Russianized tribes of Siberia. The Eskimo and Indians, too, employ varioustraps for the capture of animals;5 but the traps with sinew spring,6 found in Alaska, are probably of Siberian origin. The Koryak have evidently adopted the self-acting bow either from the Russians or from the Yakut and Tungus, who use it widely.
In the fur trade the red foxes of the Koryak territory, on account of their gorgeous and soft fur and its fiery-red color, are considered among the
1 See Part I, p. 88. 2 See Chapter XIII, Trade.
of the Hunting-Pursuits, etc., Figs. I, 2, 5, 7, 9, pp. 6, 7,
11, 15, 18; Bogoras, The
Chukchee, Vol. VII of this series, Figs. 48-50, pp. 138—140.
See Krasheninnikoff, I, p. 340.
See Mason, Traps of the American Indians.
6 Ibid., Fig. 5, p. 472; Nelson, Fig. 37, p. 122.
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
very best. They are equal in value to those of Kamchatka and the Anadyr. Since the arrival of the Russians in this region, the number of foxes has considerably fallen off, and they are now nearly extinct. In the neigh- borhood of the Russian villages they are not seen at all. Their number varies considerably from year to year. Their migration northward or south- ward depends on the presence of mice or hares, which foxes follow.
The Arctic fox (Vulpes Lagopus) occurs in much smaller numbers than the red fox. It is a tundra animal par excellence, and is found more often in the treeless eastern part of the Koryak country than in the western district. Blue foxes are very rare: their number constitutes about one per cent of that of the white foxes. The methods of hunting the polar fox are identical with those used for the red fox.
The squirrel (Sciurus vulgaris) is hardly hunted at all. It is found in small numbers on the upper course of the Gishiga and Penshina and of their tributaries, but is absent in the treeless and maritime region. In Kamchatka the squirrel does not occur at all, even in the wooded localities of the cen- tral ridge. A small number of squirrels are obtained in the Gishiga district by the Tungus, but by far the greater part of squirrel-skins which are exported by way of Gishiga is obtained from nomadic Tungus in the Kolyma district and partly in the Okhotsk district. In former times the Tungus killed squirrels by means of the bow. They used blunt arrows made of bone, so as not to spoil the skin. The hunters would aim at the head of the animal when it was sitting in a tree. The blunt arrow would only daze it, and it would fall to the ground, where it was picked up by the hunter. If still capable of running, the squirrel was caught by the hunting-dog. Nowadays the place of the bow has been taken by the flint-lock gun with thin bore for bullets of the size of a pea, which do not injure the skin.
The sable (Mustela zibellina, Linn.), the most valuable fur-animal of Siberia, was undoubtedly at one time more widespread than it is now. At present only a few dozen sable-skins are exported annually from Gishiga. These are caught in the river-valleys of Penshina and Opuka, and partly in northern Kamchatka. In southern Kamchatka the Kamchadal even now kill nearly two thousand sables annually. The highest value is placed on those from the valleys of the Olekma and the Vitim, tributaries of the Lena, and from Nerchinsk in Transbaikalia. They possess a down which is entirely dark and of bluish tinge, and long, soft, glossy black hair. The finest sables have silver-tipped hair. The sable of Kamchatka is not inferior to that of Olekma in thickness of down and softness of hair; but, since it has a russet color, the fur is of inferior quality, resembling marten-fur. The Koryak sable is somewhat darker than that of Kamchatka. The sable is hunted with the gun, in the same way as the squirrel. It is a good climber, and in time of danger takes to treetops for safety. The flintlock gun used for hunting
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
sables is of larger caliber than the one used for squirrels. Oftentimes the Kamchadal shoot sables with shot. If the animal runs into a hole, the hunter sets a nettle-thread net near the entrance, and drives it out either with the help of a dog, which digs the hole open, or by means of smoke. In our Koryak collection there is a sable-trap with sinew spring from the Opuka River. It is one-third the size of similar traps used for catching wolves. In Kamchatka a dead-fall is set for sables. Sable-hunting is a most difficult pursuit, because the animal is very quick and cleverly escapes its pursuers It vanishes in the snow, and makes passages under it; it conceals itself under stones, dry boughs, and roots of trees, and leaps from tree to tree making it difficult to take good aim at it.
The gray wolf (Canis lupus Linn.) inhabits the tundra. It is hunted mainly by the Reindeer Koryak, who have to protect their herds against its ravages. Besides, wolf's fur is considered handsome, and is used for manu- facturing caps, mittens, collars, and trimmings of clothing and foot-wear. Part ot the wolf-skins are exported. In 1899 one hundred and twenty were taken out of the Gishiga district. The Koryak hunt for wolves in the same manner as do the Chukchee.1
Only a few skins of ermine (Putorius ermineus Linn.) are exported, and it seems probable that the Koryak do not hunt it much. It would also seem that this animal is not common in the Koryak territory.2 Ermine is hunted by the Russians and by the Maritime Koryak, who set near their store-houses traps based on the principle of the self-acting bow, in which the animals are strangled.3 The Koryak have undoubtedly borrowed this device from the Russians. In Siberia it is specially favored by the Yakut, who employ it for all small animals, and I think it is a Yakut invention.
The otter (Lutra vulgaris) and wolverene (Gulo borealis) are rarely met with, and are therefore merely casually hunted. Formerly the skins of both of these animals were used for trimming festive garments. That of the wolverene served for adorning the finest clothes among the Koryak as well as among the Kamchadal and Chukchee. Even now wolverene-skins obtained by local hunters are not exported from the extreme northeast of Siberia, but they are imported by merchants as one of the most attractive articles of barter. At present the Chukchee are the principal consumers of wolverene- skins, and the wolverenes killed by the Kamchadal are also exported by merchants to the Chukchee.
Bird-Hunting. — Birds of passage, like ducks, geese, and swans, were formerly shot with bow and arrows, but are now shot with rifles. However,
1 Compare Bogoras, The Chukchee. Vol. VII of this series, pp. 137, 139. On the wolf festival see Part I, p. 89.
In 1899, 124 skins were exported via
Gishiga, while from the Kolyma district 6000 ermine-skins
exported via Yakutsk.
3 See Jochelson, Sketch of the
Hunting, etc., Fig. 8, a, b, p. 17;
Bogoras, The Chukchee, Vol. VII ot tnis
series, Fig. 52, p. 143.
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
the Koryak are rather poor shots, and do not care to hunt birds. In spite of the abundance of birds in spring and autumn, during the season of their migrations north and south, they kill very few, and do not lay by any stores of bird-meat. The birds are eaten fresh only.
Sea-fowl are caught by means of snares made of whalebone or sinew-thread. Winter birds, like the ptarmigan, are caught with nooses made of sinew-thread, which are tied to a board that has been placed in the snow. They are also driven into nets made of nettle-thread and killed with sling-stones that are hurled with slings of seal-skin (Fig. 94).
If there happens to be a nesting-place of ducks or geese, or other birds of passage, not far from the village, the Koryak drive them ashore and kill
them with clubs during the moulting-season, which is
late in July or early
August. In the village Talovka, bird-darts (Fig. 95) were used for killing
birds. Within a few miles, up the Talovka River, lies the favorite
of the geese. In August the villagers go there in kayaks to hunt
them while moulting.
They use bird-darts exactly like those employed
by the Russianized tribes on the Anadyr and the Kolyma. The Koryak, however, do not employ the throwing-board, but hurl the dart with the hand.
War. — At the present time the Koryak wage no war. The weapons which were used in days of old for war and hunting alike, as bow, arrows, and spear, have been preserved to a certain degree as hunting-weapons; while the weapons that were used in war only, have now either entirely disappeared or are retained als keepsakes.
Weapons. — Previous to the introduction of iron, stone and bone, and partly also wood, were used as material for arrow-heads. We have seen before that stone harpoon-heads are still in use; but stone arrow-heads (auta'- ma'xem) are now hard to find. I never saw a complete arrow with stone head. They were evidently superseded more quickly by iron-pointed arrows than were those made of bone. Stone arrow-heads may be found in exca- vating ancient dwellings, but they are also preserved by some of the people as keepsakes or as amulets. Three stone arrow-heads are represented in
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
Fig. 13 5. They were inserted in the arrow-shaft, to which they were tied with sinew-thread. Bone arrows made of bone of the whale, reindeer and walrus and mammoth ivory have been preserved by many Koryak, but' they are not often used in hunting. Bone of whale was employed principally for bird-arrows. The bone arrow-head was inserted in a split in the shaft or it was fitted on like a head, or fitted into a groove in the shaft.
Wooden arrows were made of one piece. Iron arrow-points were either fastened directly to the wooden shaft, or were inserted into a bone foreshaft. I have collected about thirty different types of arrows. The shape of most of them is the same as that of the Chukchee arrows described by Mr. Bogoras 1 Five arrows of somewhat different shape are illustrated here (Fig. 96). That
marked e represents a long arrow with a three-edged head of mammoth-tusk. Like the lancet-shaped bone arrows, it was employed both in war and in hunting big land-game, such as reindeer and elk. These arrows are distin- guished by their long head thin and long shaft, and by the feathering and were used at long range. At d is shown a bird-arrow of bone of whale. The one marked b represents an arrow for a self-acting bow for killing otters, with a barbed detachable iron point. Like all arrows for self-acting bows, which strike at short range, this harpoon-arrow (uke'lwe-ma'xem) pos- sesses a short, thick and unfeathered shaft. Its cross-section is oval. At c is represented an arrow with a head of antler; and at a, an arrow with an iron head resembling the head of a bird-dart. Both are used for shooting birds. They are interesting on account of the imitation of feathering in wood.2
1 See Bogoras, The Chukchee. Vol. VII of this series, Fig. 74, p. I56.
2 Such arrows have been found
also among the Ainu and Gold (See Adler, Plate II, Figs. 1-4). I have
collected several iron arrows with pseudo-feathering of the type Fig. 96, a, made entirely of one piece of iron.
They are too heavy for shooting and were probably used as offerings. (See Part I, pp. 43, 89).
71 - JESUP NORTH PACIFIC EXPED., VOL. VI, PART 2.
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
At present the bow is used in hunting only when a rifle is not available, which is seldom the case. In certain families old bows and arrows are preserved with great care, and pass on as heirlooms. The bow is still common in children's games. Boys practise shooting, and have contests in which they use as a target a mitten suspended from a stick driven into the snow. Bow and arrows are burned on the funeral pyres of men; but in the majority of cases the funeral bow and arrows are not genuine weapons, but only imitations. The funeral bow consists of a somewhat bent stave, with a grip in the middle. At the ends a thong is attached, which represents the bowstring. The arrows,1 too, are imitations, with pseudo-feathering at the butt-end.
The Maritime Koryak were considered master bowyers. Simple and compound bows were manufactured by them. The stave of the simple bow was made of larch or alder; and its concave side was lined with a broad dorsal sinew of a reindeer, which gave it additional elasticity. The stave of the compound bow was made of two strips glued together, — one of larch and one of birch, — which gave the bow special strength. The concave side of this bow, too, was usually lined with sinew, and the convex back with birch- bark. The grip of a good bow was bent in (Plate XXIX, Fig. I) so that the general form recalled to a certain extent the ancient Greek bow with its two curves joined by a straight short grip. The two horns of the bow, to which the bowstring was fastened, consisted usually of separate pieces, and were glued to the ends of the bow-tree, to which they were also tied by means of sinew.
Bowstrings were made chiefly of thongs of thong-seal hide. One of the bows in our collection has a bowstring of sinew of the white whale. Krashe- ninnikoff says 'that the Kamchadal used to make bowstrings of whale-sinew.
The bow was held vertically, with the belly towards the archer; it was spanned with the index-finger of the right hand, the three other fingers being bent in; and the nock of the arrow was held from above with the thumb. The left hand held the grip of the bow, index-finger and thumb lightly supporting the arrow-shaft, while the other fingers clasped the bow. Great strength and skill were required for spanning the bow, and constant practice was necessary. The bow of strong men was so stiff that a weak man could not span it.
I have mentioned before that long and thin arrows were intended for long range shooting. These arrows were always feathered to steady their flight. On the other hand, the feathering suggests the idea of an analogy between the flight of the arrow and that of birds. The arrow-shafts were planed and smoothed with great care. To remove all crookedness a bone instrument of
1 Compare Part I, Fig. 49, a, b, p. 107.
Jesup North Pacific Expedition, Vol. VI Plate XXIX
Fig. i. Koryak Warriors
Fig. 2. Atykino Bay with Remains of Fortifications.
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
semicircular cross-section (Fig. 97) was employed, which served as a plane knives being inserted into the blade-holes.
Previous to the introduction of iron, spears were made of bone and stone. The stone spear is still in use, but only for hunting whales (see Fig. 93, p. 552). Traditions are still handed down concerning the bone spears which were used both in war and in hunting. Krasheninnikoff mentions the threepronged spears of the Koryak.1 Presumably the iron spear superseded the old bone spear, at
Fig. 97. Bone Planer. Length, 7.5 cm.
an early time. The spear played an important role in hand-to-hand fights. Tradition relates how the heroes, wielding only a spear, overcame their enemies. In olden times there were also contests with spears. Iron spears2 are nowadays employed only in bear-hunting and in killing reindeer and dogs for sacrifice.3 Every herdsman owns an iron spear, which is tied to the right side of the riding-sleigh, which is usually provided with bone rings for suspend- ing it.
Another weapon used in hand-to-hand fights was the big knife (mainowal). It was about 50-60 cm. long, with a short handle of bone. It was carried in a sheath on the left side, like a short-sword, suspended from a shoulder- strap. It is not known what kind of weapon was supplanted by the iron knife. The Yukaghir, according to tradition, used long battle-knives made of elk-ribs. The big knife is used at present chiefly by the Reindeer Koryak, who carry it on journeys and use it for chopping wood for the fire and for cutting frozen meat; but even in quite recent times this knife served as a weapon.
Judging from accounts of the customs of former times, the slung-shot must have been used in war. In consisted of a long thong of thong-seal hide, with a stone at its end. In one tradition which I recorded in Nayakhan, in which a battle between two heroes is described, it is related that the warrior from Nayakhan — who was known under the name of "Woman- Snatcher," because he took by violence all the women who pleased him — was once surprised by a hostile hero when he had no bow and spear, but only a slung-shot, which he wore like a belt. While dodging his adver- sary's arrows, he hurled his slungshot at the latter with such force that the line encircled his body several times and cut him in twain.
The Russians early introduced a wide-bore flintlock gun for hunting sea-mammals.4 Powder and lead are supplied by the government and are sold at cost price. The lead bullets are made by the hunters themselves.
Some Koryak own Winchester rifles, which are obtained either directly
1 Krasheninnikoff, I, p. 51. 2 See Fig. 143
Part I, Plate VII, Fig. 2, opposite p. 80; and Part I, Plate X, opposite p. 96.
description compare, Bogoras, The Chukchee, Vol. VII of this series, p.
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
from American whalers or through barter from the Chukchee. During the `last few years many Koryak have acquired Berdan rifles, with which the Russian Army was equipped until 1895. When the army was equipped with magazine-rifles, the government sold the old rifles at low prices. Thus the Berdan rifle reached the Koryak. I took fifteen of these rifles along from Vladivostok, and exchanged them for articles for our collection, or gave them away in return for services.
Armor. — The Chukchee and Koryak coats of mail collected by us
Fig. 98. Koryak Warrior
|have been described by Mr. Bogoras.1 I merely wish to add that in my opinion the upper part of the armor had two wings. The absence of one wing from our specimens proves only that they are not complete. This is confirmed not only by the presence of thong- holes on that side of the head-protector on which the wing is missing, and by the fact that in some pieces of armor the right wing is missing, in others the left, but also by the information gathered from men acquainted with the old customs of the tribe. At first some Koryak explained the absence of the left wing on suits of armor by the fact that they had belonged to lefthanded warriors, and that the wing was left off that the left hand might be free. This statement is mentioned by Mr. Bogoras ; 2 but subsequently, on further inquiry, some old men, who knew how armor had been worn, denied this, and asserted that the complete armor had two wings, protecting the two arms. I was told, further, that the Reindeer Koryak in the northern part of Palpal, where I could not go owing to lack of time, still preserved several complete coats of mail which at present are worn at sacrifices on the occasion of the festival of reindeer- races.3 A Reindeer Koryak of Palpal, whom I saw in the village of Kamenskoye, promised to bring me a complete suit of armor, but he did not keep his promise. Even the incomplete ones were obtained with great difficulty. For a long time the owners would not agree to sell them. The arms, which were passed through the|
loops inside the wings on the side of the head-protector, held the armor in place on the shoulders; while the fingers or hands were thrust through the small loops at the edge of the wings when it was desired to cover the arm entirely. Fig. 98 shows a Koryak clad in armor, with his left arm free,
1 See Bogoras, The Chukchee, Vol. VII of the series, pp. 161-168. 2 Ibid., p. 165.
3 See Part I, p. 88.
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
which, however, may be protected by the left wing, like his right arm, by putting a wing-loop on his hand. How much strength, agility, and exercise must have been required to fight in so heavy and uncomfortable a costume! In one myth,1 when Big-Raven offered his son Ememqut an armor for a battle with the Chukchee, the son declined the offer and went to battle armed only with his spear.
Fig. 98 also shows how the helmet and arm-guards made of small iron plates were worn.2 The warriors wore a fur band under the helmet to protect the forehead against the hard iron. The lower part of the armor which consists of small iron plates tied together with thong, resembles a skirt. It was closed at the side by means of short straps.
Plate XXIX, Fig. 1, represents two Koryak in armor, with bent bows. The plate is the reproduction of a photograph taken by me, except that the artist, Mr. Rudolf Cronau, sketched in under my direction the missing wing of the armor.
Prior to their acquaintance with iron mail-coats, — which I suppose were introduced by the Tungus,3 — the Koryak wore mail-coats of walrus-skin or of small plates of bone joined by means of straps. Krasheninnikoff says that "the Koryak armor consisted of oblong bone pieces sewed together with thongs".4
Fortifications. — The maritime Koryak fortified their villages in order to prevent sudden attacks by the enemy and to withstand a siege. Whenever possible, they built their villages on islands near the coast, to which they resorted to fish and hunt sea-mammals. They had temporary dwellings at the mouths of rivers. At the approach of a foe, they would take to their boats and disappear in the natural forts formed by the rocky islands. At present these islets are uninhabited, but it is said that on many of them traces of ancient dwellings may still be seen. To my regret, during the first half of the summer of 1901, which I spent in the Russian settlement Kushka, at the mouth of the Gishiga River, it was impossible to venture out in the wooden boats of the Russian settlers to the islands of which the Koryak spoke to me.5
Where no islands were near the coast, the maritime Koryak fortified their villages. The islanders, too, fortified their temporary coast settlements. All the coast villages were built on hills with a steep descent to the sea. On the land side the settlement was surrounded by an embankment, a stone wall, or a stockade. When an attack was expected, sentinels were stationed on
1 See Part I, p. 138. 2 Compare Bogoras, The Chukchee, pp. 167, 168.
3 See Chapter X. 4 Compare Krasheninnikoff, II, p. 51.
6 During that summer I succeeded in
making two trips in wooden boats from the mouth of the Gishiga
River, — one to the Koryak at the mouth of the Ovekova River, a distance of about fourteen miles; and the other
to the Koryak at the mouth of the Nayakhan River, a distance of a hundred miles. The latter trip was considered
so dangerous that the Russian settlers advised me not to undertake it. But luck favored us, the weather was fine,
and I covered the distance in two days, but on the return trip we were detained in the uninhabited Bay of Atykino
(See Plate XXIX, Fig. 2) for several days By stormy weather.
JOCHELSON, THE KORYAK.
the roofs of houses or storehouses; for, in case of a sudden attack by the enemy on the hamlets of the sedentary Koryak, the inhabitants of underground houses found themselves, as it were, in a trap. For this reason, at least one guard was always kept in the settlements of warriors. In case of an attack, the women and old people would launch the skin boats, if the sea was open, so as to be ready to flee, in case of defeat, with the surviving warriors. I was told that the inhabitants of the old settlement near the mouth of the river Gishiga, having lost a battle with the Cossacks, took to their skin boats, and succeeded in escaping to the Yamsk Koryak. At the mouth of the river Nayakhan I saw traces of a fortified settlement. It was situated on a rooky promontory, with cliffs on three sides rising abruptly from the sea. On the fourth side there is a steep descent to the river-valley. This slope had been protected with a stone rampart. Piles of stones which once formed the wall are still visible. Tradition relates that the Russians were led there by Tungus who were hostile to the Koryak. The latter stubbornly defended the approach to the village. It was winter, and they poured water on the slope to make it slippery. During one night the Russians forged sharp iron ice-creepers, tied them under the soles of their fur boots, and stormed the fort. Many of them perished from the arrows of the Koryak and from stones which they rolled down; but as they were many, their fire- arms gave them the victory in the end. Thereupon the Koryak warriors slew all the women and children in their houses. Many of them committed suicide, and only a few found safety in flight by sliding down the cliffs to he sea, and reaching Paren over the ice. I found traces of a fortified settle-ment also in the Bay of Atykino (Plate XXIX, Fig. 2).
At sight of an enemy, the Reindeer Koryak drove their herds up the mountains and defended the approach. In the open tundra they would sur-round the camp with a wall of sleighs placed upright and tied together with thongs, having first driven the reindeer into the corral. From this fortified corral the warriors would make sallies or go out to accept a challenge to single-handed fights with the champions of the invaders.