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Lance -  A long shaft with a sharp head of bone, flint, or metal used for thrusting or throwing both in war and in the hunt.  The lance, or spear, was used in some form by almost all Indians.

Early Indians employed a throwing stick in hurling the lance.  The Plains Indians, used the lance in hunting buffalo, hugged it beneath the arm as they thrust it into the side of the animal.  hunting lances usually were heavier and shorter than those used in war.  There were other types of lances, some highly decorated with feathers and used only during ceremonies.Lances

Among some of the Plains tribes there were special lances used by members of societies composed of the bravest warriors, such as the Dog Soldiers of the Cheyenne and Kiowa.  Among the Dakota such men were known as "Strong Hearts," and there were two men of this society known as sash wearers.  Sitting Bull was a sash wearer of such a society.

During battle the sash wearers advanced toward the enemy, dismounted, and pinned their sashes to the ground with the lance.  The other end of the sash around their necks.  They had to remain in there spot and fight until killed or until a brother warrior released them.  Such lances as those used by sash wearers were decorated with skins, feathers, and horsehair.

There were also lances known as "medicine lances," which were carried as "good medicine," or for good luck.

Related Information within this Site
[ Dog Soldier ][ Medicine ][ Military Societies ][ Shield ]
[ Sitting Bull ][ Throwing Stick ]