Published on December 10, 2012 by Casey
Butterflies play a variety of roles in Native American folktales from different tribes. In the folklore of some tribes, butterflies represent change and balance; in others, ephemeral beauty; and in some, vanity and frivolous behavior. Many tribes consider butterflies to be symbols of good luck, and some have taboos against killing them. Blackfoot people associate butterflies with sleep and dreaming, and butterfly designs were used to decorate cradleboards and other children’s items to help them sleep and bring them good dreams.
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Butterflies are also used as clan animals in some Native American cultures. Tribes with Butterfly Clans include the Hopi tribe (whose Butterfly Clan is called Poovolngyam or Poval-wungwa).