Itelmen - Kinship

Kinship Groups and Descent. No exact information about the character of Itelmen social structure has been preserved. Marriages were exogamous, but in ancient times they were endogamous as well. The mythological ancestors of the Itelmen were a brother and sister who had married. Prior to the introduction of Christianity by the Russians, polygamy was widespread. There was no ancestor cult among the Itelmen.

Kinship Terminology. In Itelmen kin terms, gender distinctions are sometimes ignored: mitx is "grandfather" and also "grandmother"; sillatumx is "brother" and "sister." The latter is for addressing persons of the same gender: "sister for a brother" is lilixl, and "brother for a sister" is qitkindn. In the same way p'ec is "child" irrespective of the child's gender ( ixlx? in p'ec is "son, male child"; mimsx? in p'ec is "daughter, female child").

User Contributions:

Comment about this article, ask questions, or add new information about this topic: