Hopi people and culture

Encyclopedia Article


The Hopi are a Native American tribal people, who comprise a sovereign nation located in northeastern Arizona. They are also known as one of the Pueblo peoples, as named by the Spanish colonizers in the 1500s because of their clusters of modular dwellings, which reminded the Spanish adventurers of their own small towns, or pueblos, back on the Iberian peninsula. Hopi is a shortened version of Hopituh, meaning "Peaceful ones," and in earlier periods were also called the Moqui, most likely named as such by another tribe. As a Puebloan group, the Hopi are considered traditional agriculturalists and farm a mixture of maize, squash, beans, chili peppers, and onions. Hopi life is situated around ceremonials, of which each village has its own variations, that consist of the veneration of some 300 kachinas.

Many Hopi people live on the Hopi reservation, which is encompassed by the Navajo Reservation. The Hopi reservation consists of twelve villages located on three mesas: First Mesa, Second Mesa, and Third Mesa, all of which are located upon the even larger Black Mesa. The Hopi consider this land sacred and part of their tribal history and origin.

Photo Credit: 

"Hopi tribal archaeologist at the Hopi Youth Spring Restoration, July 30, 2014" by Dyan Bone, Kaibab National Forest is licensed under CC BY-SA.

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