sipapu (pronounced SEE-pah-poo)

Sipapu is a Hopi word. A sipapu is a very small, round pit located north of the fire hearth in a pithouse or kiva. Sipapus are thought by some Pueblo Indians to represent the hole through which humans climbed into this world.

People started building sipapus in pithouses during the Pueblo I period. They are still found in kivas today.