Hunting/Work Implements


Early Navaho implements were usually made of stone or wood, as iron and its value were little known. Accordingly, stone knives were used for cutting, whittling and scraping, Stone knives, in shape like the arrowpoint, or elliptical, are still largely prescribed for ceremonial purposes, in cutting sacred buckskin, in unraveling knots, and the like. Yet the word besh (stone knife) is now generally applied to iron and metal, or anything made of it, unless from the connection a stone implement may be designated, such as Nayenezgani bibesh, the (stone) knife of the Slayer of Enemies; besdolaghas, the serrate (stone) arrowpoint, etc. Pg. 62

The spear consisted of a stout shaft, about seven to eight feet in length, to which a point of flint, and later of iron, was fastened and decorated with a tuft of eagle feathers. Pg. 316

The boomerang is made of oak and whittled down to the shape of a battenstick, when it is heated and bent over the knee to give it a slight curve on the edged side. In hunting rabbits it is hurled after the animal, the object being to break its legs. Pg. 324

A powderhorn was made of the horn of a goat or cow and the opening covered with goatskin. These are no longer in use. Pg. 325

An Ethnologic Dictionary of the Navaho Language; 1910, The Franciscan Fathers.