totem

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to·tem

(tō'tĕm),
An object (usually an animal or plant) serving as the emblem of a family or clan and often as a reminder of its ancestry; something that serves as a revered symbol.
[Amer. Indian]

totem

[tō′təm]
an animal, plant, force of nature, or inanimate object that represents the tribal ancestor of a clan. It also serves as a tutelary spirit and protector and may communicate through oracles.
References in periodicals archive ?
The final totem pole, which stands 13 feet high, celebrates visual art and music.
The totem pole, which has travelled nearly 8,000 km, is a symbol of that commitment.
Hansen and the students repainted and resealed the totem pole, one of five throughout the district made by Hansen and his students over the years.
A totem pole memorial to explorer HM Stanley (inset) has been erected in St Asaph, but there are questions about its location on Lower Street
She looks after the site's many cultural objects, including its well-known collection of totem poles.
Anders Bjorklund is the director of the museum where the totem pole was fount.
The totem pole has now been raised in the school grounds and features 10 traditional tribal faces designed by local primary schools.
Governor Brady realized that along with all Alaska had to offer, a totem pole display would have a powerful visual impact at the Expos.
According to a report in National Geographic News, the groups feel the symbol doesn't reflect the native art and culture of the Vancouver region and the rest of British Columbia, such as totem poles.
Time has taken its toll on the totem pole, which is partially rotted and unfortunately now constitutes a danger to those who come to see it and to the passers-by from Bossey going about their ordinary business," said WCC general secretary Samuel Kobia in a recent e-mail message to council staff.
That same spirit of enlightened condescension can also be found in the wave of corporations now experimenting with sending senior executives down onto the shop floor so they can find out what it's like to be at the bottom of the totem pole.
In the forefront, jumbled parts--a raven's beak, a glaring eye--jut off a degenerating totem pole.