Many Native American Indians of the Plateau regions were reliant on fish for their sustenance. Their religions have used the fish to symbolize life, spiritual change and motion.
Meaning of the Many Fish Symbol
The meaning of the Many Fish symbol was to signify water and the flow of life from the Earth. The single most important food to the survival of the Plateau people was the Pacific Salmon. The men of the tribes were the hunters of fish whilst the women prepared the food for the family. Fish was died and smoked in order to preserve food for the winter months.
The Many Fish Symbol as a Pictogram
The Many Fish symbol is in a fact a pictogram. A pictogram, also called a pictograph, conveys a story and meaning through pictures that signify and resemble the shapes of physical objects or people. An Ideagram is another form of pictogram which conveys complex ideas, feelings and emotions. A pictogram, such as the one recognised as a Many Fish symbol, is a therefore a form of writing which uses representational, pictorial drawings to tell a story. The famous tribes Plateau Indians included the Klamath, Modoc, Nez Perce and Salish (Flathead).