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49. Additions to the Myth of Kwêkwaxâ'wê?. 1

(Dictated by a Lau'itsîs.)

The myth people had nothing to eat. They made a salmon-trap, but no salmon went into it. Then Great-Inventor went to the graves, and asked, "Are not there any twins here?" He asked the first grave, which said, "Go to another grave: there are twins there." Finally he found a grave in which twin girls were buried. He sprinkled one of them with the water of life, and she revived. He said, "I have revived you, because I want you to try to accomplish what I have been working for. Please do help me! I have revived you for this purpose." Then he married her.

The woman told him to collect some roots. of ferns (sâ'laedana). He went out and gathered some. He asked his wife, "What shall I do with those roots?" Then she asked him to strip off the leaves and throw them into the water. She helped him do so. Then she threw them into the water. The leaves covered the whole surface at Ostô'?wa, which is situated in the country of the Na'k!wax*da?xu, not far from Kingcombe Inlet. Suddenly all the leaves disappeared, the water began to bubble, and

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salmon were jumping in the river. They went into the salmon-trap. Then the people went down and took out the fish. Deer's salmon-trap floated away on the water. He had forgotten to make an opening in it. Then the myth people cut the salmon and hung them up to dry.

Now, Great-Inventor went to get fuel to dry his salmon. He went every day. He needed much fuel, because he had so many salmon to dry. When he entered his house, the salmon caught his hair. Then he said, "Let me go! Why do you want to hold me, you who come from the dead?" Then his wife said, "What did you say there?" Great-Inventor replied, "What did I say?" And his wife retorted, "You said, 'What are you doing, you who come from the dead?'" At once his wife was transformed into foam. The salmon fell down, and all disappeared. Only four salmon remained; and Great-Inventor cried, "No, you do not come from the dead!" But even then the salmon and his wife did not return.


Canoe-Caulking (Mê'mg*ôlEm) and Deer (Gê'xustâla) were sad when Great-Inventor died. Canoe-Caulking sang "He was as great as the sand of the sea." Then the Deer sang, ",He was as great as the needles on the cedar-trees." Then his brother said, "Oh, that is too much!" He threw him down the cliff, followed him, and pecked at him with his beak. Both may still be seen, transformed into rocks, at Crooked-Beach.


Great-Inventor's wife was E'lxsâ'yugwa. Mê'mg*ôlEm (the raven) was son of Great-Inventor, whose younger brother was Young-Raccoon. When the latter made love

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to Great-Inventor's wife, 1 he called her Lâ'LExala 2 because she was painted red on the side of her chest and shoulders.

When he pretends to be sick and to die, he asks that the children be requested to dance before him. They dance, and sing, "Mâ'kuls, mâ'kuls de'dEg*î!"


Sawbill-Duck-Woman, when sent into the woods, is told to call t!Enx*t!Enntsô' instead of lê'x*lEk*!îsä'i. 3


K*ê'xenêt (result of scraping) is placed under a red cedar. 4 He is taken to Ku'n?waas, just west of Crooked-Beach. 5

They gather stones for ballast. The whale is gummed at Mâ'lmä, an island just opposite Crooked-Beach. The name of the first young thunder-bird is ?nâ'l?EmsgEmEmgolagEmê?.

Born-to-be-the-Sun (the mink) lived at Crooked-Beach, while the Wolves lived beyond the point, on the same island. There was no low water on Born-to-be-the-Sun's beach, and he could not get any clams. Only the Wolves had clams. One day he went to buy some clams from them, but they declined to sell them. Then Born-to-be-the-Sun and Great-Inventor resolved what to do. They resolved that one of them should pretend to die. Great-Inventor pretended to be dead, and he was buried in a tree. They knew that the Wolves always tried to get bodies. Soon the Wolves came to get him. They climbed one on the other's back, and on top of all of them was their chief. He always took the bodies out of

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the grave-boxes with his tail. When the Wolf tried to get the body of Great-Inventor, he cut off the Wolf's tail, and all the Wolves tumbled down. They were frightened, and went home. Born-to-be-the-Sun, who had been watching, got his friend down; and they took the tail of the chief of the Wolves and placed it over their fire. 1

At Gwa'yasdEms, just north of the village, is a cave. It looks like a house with several platforms. The flat root of a tree in it is said to be the drum of the myth people. The cave is quite dry. It is the winter-dance house of Great-Inventor and of the myth people.


Deer also lived at Crooked-Beach. He obtained the fire from Sea-Otter, who carried it on his tail. They sang to him, "As?anwê'." He wore wood for his dancing-hat; and he put this into the fire. He ran away with it after it caught fire, and they could not catch him.


Southeast-Wind lay behind the island MElabâ'na.


491:1 See pp. 217 et seq.; also Publications of the Jesup North Pacific Expedition, Vol. III, pp. 322 et seq.; F. Boas, Indianische Sagen, etc., p. 174.

493:1 Publications of the Jesup North Pacific Expedition, Vol. III, pp. 282 et seq.

493:2 Ibid., Vol. III, p. 286, line 24.

493:3 Ibid., Vol. III, p. 290, line 24.

493:4 Ibid., Vol. X, p. 177.

493:5 Ibid., Vol. X, p. 180.

494:1 The continuation is the same as recorded before (Ibid., Vol. X pp. 88 et seq.).

Next: 50. Additions to the Myth of the Mink