Tepees in Banff, Alta., Can.
Tall conical tent dwelling used by the Plains Indian
s of North America. It was suited to nomadic buffalo hunting because it could be easily dismantled and transported. It was made by stretching a sewn cover of buffalo skins over a skeleton of 20–30 wooden poles, all slanted in toward a central point and tied together near the top. A flap at the top allowed smoke to escape, and a flap at the bottom served as a doorway. The tepee became a popular symbol of all American Indians, although the wickiup
, earth lodge, and pueblo
were at least as important.
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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.