Christmas Ornament - Polar Bear
Hand-made via flamework using multi-coloured borosilica glass rods
The Inuit people of the North have many folk tales featuring polar bears. Some legends tell of humans learning to hunt from polar bears, while in other tales, bears are humans when inside their own houses, dressing in bear hides to venture outside. The constellation of stars known as "Ursa Major", literally translates to "Greater Bear". Aptly named, there are numerous myths and stories about the creation of the widely-known constellation, since to many people, it resembles a large bear. These legends reveal a deep respect for the polar bear, which is portrayed as both spiritually powerful and closely akin to humans.
The human-like posture of bears when standing and sitting have probably contributed to the belief that the spirits of humans and bears were closely tied. For the Inuit of Labrador, the polar bear is a form of the Great Spirit, Tuurngasuk. Called "the great lonely roamer", polar bears are considered to be wise, powerful, and are deeply respected by the Inuit people.