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THE GREAT LAW (ENGLISH)

The Great Law of Peace

THE GREAT LAW
OF THE
IROQUOIS CONFEDERACY

WAMPUM 54: CLAN MOTHERS HOLD A COUNCIL TO SELECT A NEW CHIEF

When a chieftainship title becomes vacant through death or other cause, the Otiyaner women of the Clan in which the title is hereditary shall hold a council and shall choose one of their sons to fill the office made vacant. Such a candidate shall not be the father of any chief of the League. If the choice is unanimous, the name is referred to the men relatives of the Clan. If they should disapprove, it shall be their duty to select a candidate from among their own number. If then the men and women are unable to decide which of the two candidates shall be named, then the matter shall be referred to the chiefs of the League in the Clan. They shall decide which candidate shall be named. If the men and women agree to a candidate, then his name shall be referred to the sister clan for confirmation. If the sister clans confirm the choice, they shall refer their action to the chiefs of the League who shall ratify the choice and present it to their cousin chiefs, and if the cousin chiefs confirm the name, then the candidate shall be installed by the proper ceremony for the conferring of chieftainship titles.

Note: Again, "one of their sons" means the eligible men of the Clan. The new chief shall have to meet with the approval of all the men, women, Clan Mothers and other Chiefs.