Anishinaabe Arcs: Background 2: why arcs?
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Consider two pieces of wood lashed together to form a V. No matter how firm the lashing, it will be very hard to keep the two ends apart if you apply force.

 

Now consider two ends of a sapling bent in an arc: when you try to make the ends meet, the arc fights back! This is true not just for the ends; an arc will distribute the load along its entire length, no matter where you apply force.

 

 

Philip Bosum of Mistassini, Quebec bending a beavertail snowshoe frame at his winter hunting camp on Assinica Lake; photo by Henri Vaillancourt 1980