Benoit First Nation

Eight-pointed star and its meaning

Kwe' (Hi),

The eight- pointed star is a revision of the seven - pointed star that has been used for centuries as the symbol for the sun, but it also represents the original seven districts of the Mi'kmaq Nation which later became eight districts with the addition of Taqamkuk (Newfoundland). There is a similar one that is the hieroglyph for a star. It has many variations and is one of the petroglyphs that can be traced back over 500 years in Bedford, Nova Scotia.

In the eighteen century after signing treaties with the crown an eight-pointed star included the representation of the British crown.

It has also been noted to represent unity with the colours of the star representing the four races of people and the four directions: North - white, South - black, East - Red, and West - Yellow. The number four has great significance throughout Mi'kmaq culture. The points show the four directions and emphasises balance within oneself and with mother earth. It also shows that there are things more complex by being doubled to eight points.

Today it is a common design emblem used with crafts, blankets and other forms of modern art. There are different variations in size with the colours and how they are placed on the coloured version of the star.

Chief Jasen S. Benwah
Penwa' Mawi-Amskwesewey L'nue'kati
Benoit First Nation

"We will yet honour our ancestors as well as our children's children," Chief Benwah

Drawing by Samantha Jesso.


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