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Kwagu'ł woman wearing a fringed Chilkat blanket (worn backwards), a hamatsa neckring and mask representing a deceased relative who had been a shaman. Photograph by Edward S. Curtis c. 1883.

Kwagu'ł are an Kwakwaka'wakw tribe of the Indigenous peoples of the Pacific Northwest Coast from central British Columbia, on northern Vancouver Island. Their main community is called Tsax̱is or Fort Rupert. The ancestral language is Kwak'wala, a language that is a part of the Wakashan language group. In their language, Kwagu'ł translates to Smoke-Around-the-World referencing the smoke that came from the many bighouses in their villages.

The band government of the Kwagu'ł is the Kwakiutl First Nation. The anglicization "Kwakiutl" and other forms of this group's name was for a long time used to describe all the Kwakwaka'wakw peoples, but properly only refers to this one group.[citation needed] "Kwakiutl" is also used by the Laich-kwil-tach or Lekwiltok (Euclataws or Yucultas, historically) who migrated from the vicinity of what would become Fort Rupert to what is now the City of Campbell River and adjoining islands at the start of the 19th century, who style themselves the Southern Kwakiutl.

Notable members include artist Mungo Martin and his descendants, many of whom are also prominent artists.


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