This article is about the Lakota sub-tribe. For the musical group, see Brulé (band). For Métis people, see Bois-Brûlés. For other uses, see Brule.

Janeen Antoine (Sicangu Lakota), curator and educator[1]
Regions with significant populations
 United States
( South Dakota)
Lakota, English
traditional tribal religion, Sun Dance,
Native American Church, Christianity
Related ethnic groups
other Lakota people)

The Brulé are one of the seven branches or bands (sometimes called "sub-tribes") of the Teton (Titonwan) Lakota American Indian people. They are known as Sičháŋǧu Oyáte (in Lakota), or "Burnt Thighs Nation," and so, were called Brulé (literately "burnt") by the French. The name may have derived from an incident where they were fleeing through a grass fire on the plains.


Many Sicangu people live on the Rosebud Indian Reservation in southwestern South Dakota and are enrolled in the federally recognized Rosebud Sioux Tribe, known as Sicangu Oyate. A smaller population lives on the Lower Brule Indian Reservation, on the west bank of the Missouri River in central South Dakota. Others live on Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. The different federally recognized tribes are politically independent of each other.



The term "Sičhą́ǧu" appears on pages 3 to14 of Beginning Lakhota.[2]

"Ká Lakȟóta kį líla hą́ske. 'That Indian (over yonder) is very tall.'"
"Hą, hé Sičhą́ǧú. 'Yes, that's a Rosebud Sioux.'"

It appears to be a compound word of the Thítȟųwą Lakȟóta dialect meaning "burned thigh."[3]

Historic Brulé Tiyošpaye or bands

Together with the Oglala Lakota, who are mostly based at the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, they are often called Southern Lakota. They were divided in three great regional tribal divisions:

According to the Brulé Medicine Bull (Tatánka Wakan), the people were decentralized and identified with the following tiyošpaye or extended family groups who collected in various local tiwahe (English: Camps or family circles):

Notable Sicangu (Brulé)

Chief Iron Nation

See also


  1. "Native American Heritage Month: S.F. gallery director wins praise for breaking with past." San Francisco Chronicle. 12 Nov 1995 (retrieved 20 Dec 2009)
  2. Beginning Lakhota, Volume 1, (Boulder: University of Colorado Lakhota Project, 1976).
  3. Famous Indians of Northwest Nebraska. Chadron Centennial Committee. 1983. p. 34.
  4. Lower Brule
  5. Brown, Dee (1970). Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee, ch. 6. Bantam Books. ISBN 0-553-11979-6.
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