Sacred Texts  Native American  Hopi  Index  Previous  Next 
Buy this Book at

The Traditions of the Hopi, by H.R. Voth, [1905], at


A long time ago the people were living in Oraíbi. They were also living in Wálpi which, however, then was not on top of the mesa, but somewhat farther down towards the north-west. One time the children (people) of the chief in Oraíbi were very bad and the chief concluded that he would punish them. So he went over to the warrior chief in Wálpi. He sat down and they first smoked, then the warrior chief asked him what his object in coming was. "Yes," he said, "my children are very bad and I have come to see what you think about it. After some days we will come by here to attack Wálpi. You must then be ready and come to meet us in the valley, and when my children return and run, you must kill them, but those who pass the rock that is standing south of Ponótoika, they shall remain unmolested.

The warrior chief of Wálpi agreed to this, on the condition that the Oraíbi chiefs would not ask for any of the lives of the Wálpi. To this he agreed. So the Oraíbi chief returned and told his people that in four days they would make a raid on Wálpi and try especially to steal some maidens. They were willing, and so during the night after the third day proceeded towards Wálpi. Early in the morning they approached the village, hut the Wálpi were ready. They descended from their village well armed, and, sounding the war yell, rushed upon the Oraíbi.

One of the Wálpi young men had a very large, fierce dog. This dog rushed ahead and bit a great many of the Oraíbi in the leg, thus

p. 256

disabling them. The Oraíbi had been so thoroughly surprised that they got frightened and fled when the Wálpi rushed upon them. The latter now chased the fleeing Oraíbi and killed a great many. The big dog also disabled and killed a number of them. Only a few passed the rock mentioned above. On account of this battle, in which that dog killed so many Oraíbi, a dog is engraved on that rock and it is called the dog mark (Pókvâita).

This is the way chiefs often punished their children (people) when they became "bewitched." That is one reason why there are so very many ruins all over the country. Many people were killed in that way because their chiefs became angry and invited some chief or inhabitant from other villages to destroy their people.


255:1 Told by Sik'ahpiki (Shupaúlavi).

Next: 106. A Katcina Race Contest Between the Wálpi and the Oraíbi