OBJECT FEATURE

Shaman costume decorated with ribbons, mirrors, bells, arrows and animal bones.  1644–1911 (Qing dynasty), Inner Mongolia Museum

Shaman costume decorated with ribbons, mirrors, bells, arrows and animal bones.
1644–1911 (Qing dynasty), Inner Mongolia Museum

Enchanting divinity: Shamanism at the time of Genghis Khan 

This costume belonged to a shaman. The gown is covered with ribbons which represent feathers, indicating that the shaman could transform into a bird. Bronze mirrors were attached to scare away bad spirits. This costume would have been presented in its entirety when the shaman was conducting a ceremony, creating an imposing spectacle.

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David Roberts