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Native Americans traditionally used Pacific yew for constructing
harpoons, spear handles, eating utensils, wedges, paddles, and clubs
used in battle and for hunting seals . Pacific yew is renowned for
its value in making bows and was formerly referred to as "bow plant" by
the Salish people . Bows made from Pacific yew tended to be broad,
short, and flat . Pacific yew is still used to craft some of the
finest archery bows. The best bows are made from wood which has been
cured for several decades  and are, not surprisingly, quite costly.
Some Native American peoples traditionally associated Pacific yew with
death and bereavement [32,75]. The fragrant foliage was used as a
deodorant and cleaning agent . Tonics made from Pacific yew were
used medicinally by many peoples of the Pacific Northwest .
Although seeds are poisonous, the fleshy portions surrounding them were
sometimes eaten . The supple, stringy underbark was sometimes used
for braiding and weaving various items .