Encyclopedia > Kwakiutl mythology

  Article Content

Kwakiutl mythology

The Kwakiutl are a tribe of Native Americans in the northwestern United States.

Tsonoqwa[?] (Tsonokwa[?]) is a type of cannibal giant called Geekumhl[?] and comes in both male and female forms. The female for is the most common; she eats children and cries "hu-hu!" to attract them, as well as offering candy and treasure. Children frequently outwit her and take her treasures without being eaten. The female form is also a

Kewkwaxa'we[?] is the raven spirit, who brought the Kawkiutl people the moon, fire, salmon, the sun and the tides.

Of particular importance in Kwakiutl culture is the secret society called Hamatsa[?]. During the winter, there is a four-day, complex dance that serves to iniate new members of Hamatsa. Some of the dancers represent various spirits, including Bakbakwalanooksiwae[?] ("cannibal at the north end of the world"; he is actually invisible and each dancer represents a mouth). The initiates are possessed by Bakbakwalanooksiwae on the first day of the ceremony and wanders into the woods until the end. When the initiate returns, he enacts a cannibalistic experience symbolically. Kwakwakalanooksiwae[?] is the most prestigious role in the ceremony; he is a cannibalistic raven monster. Galokwudzuwis[?] ("crooked beak of heaven") and Hokhokw[?] (cannibalistic bird who crushes skulls) are other participants.

All Wikipedia text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License

  Search Encyclopedia

Search over one million articles, find something about almost anything!
  Featured Article
Huron mythology

... to Wyandot mythology, Iosheka[?] created the first man and woman and taught them many skills, including all their religious ceremonies and rituals, the ability to fight ...