THE feather ornaments are of such importance among the South American Indians, as indeed among most other uncivilized peoples, that they may be dealt with in a special chapter. Yet my treatment of this subject cannot, of course, be exhaustive. An elaborate exposition of the Indian feather orna ments would fill a whole volume. My chief aim is not to give a full description and classification of these ornaments, but to show the superstitious ideas with which they are connected, and which, as far as I know, have never been pointed out before. For this purpose I shall in the following pages only adduce such facts as bear direct relation to my main thesis.