Įčorúšika ("Wears Faces on His Ears") and His Brothers
Hočąk Syllabic Text with an Interlinear English Translation
(1) There was a longhouse and there were ten men of the second generation. They lived in that longhouse. One of them, Kunu the oldest, had four arms. That one said, (2) "My younger brothers, here in this world not a one of all the spirits there are is equal to me. I am holy. (3) And not any one of them in the heavens above is equal to me. Go ahead and travel should you go about the earth, never worry yourselves about anything," he said, that is, the oldest one said it. (4) And the youngest one wore a face on each side of his ears. Įčo-horúšika ("Wears Faces on His Ears") they called him. Kunu loved the others, but he loved only the youngest one the most. (5) And that young one was the only one who killed the most [game]. He was the most handsome and the best in all other things. And once upon a time Kunu said, (6) "My younger brothers, I think it's about time that we were married," he said. "We will seek women tonight," he said. We will put the lodge in order. I will sing paint songs," he said. (7) "We will seek them out." They made a drum. Then they swept the lodge and opened up the paint bundle. Then he poured tobacco on the paint. (8) Once it was dark, he sang. When he used dance songs, they would dance in place where they were sitting. They did this all night long. It was day. (9) And in the morning he painted an ax red. He also hung a pack strap at the back of the lodge. And he said, "My younger brothers, let's go hunt for what our sisters-in-law will eat," Kunu said. (10) Then they went hunting. Right away Įčorúšika had already returned. Unexpectedly, the woodpile was piled up with wood. He started to go around the wood that she had. (11) It was what the new woman had packed. To his surprise, a woman was sitting there. She was sitting there in Hena's seat. (12) Then all the others came home. They were grateful. Again at night they performed the doing of wanąčere. (13) Kunu said, "My dear sister-in-law, if you get sleepy and want to go to sleep, then do so. If you feel like it, you may dance." Again they did it until daylight. They did this way for ten nights. (14) They did wanąčére. In the morning, one of them would come. They married all of the women. Įčorúšika married the one who came the very last. This one alone excelled in beauty.
(15) In time they gathered together for a hunting trip. Hena said, "I've thought of something," he said. "This one, our older brother, loves Įčorúšika the best, (16) and he has given him alone in marriage the plumpest woman. I do not like it. If I were married to her, I'd like it," he said. Some forbade it. "It is well enough. We all have companions. (17) Our older brother is charitably benefitting us. We are not equal to anything. They alone are more. Should anything happen, they might do something harmful to us," they said, (18) but Hena truly admired the woman. Repeatedly he asked them. Finally, he persuaded some of them, but he could not persuade the second youngest. Seven of them were persuaded. (19) And Kunu knew of it because he was holy. Once at night Kunu asked them, "What has happened to you? You are not the way you used to be. (20) My two youngest brothers are the same as ever, just like they have always been," he said to them. And in time they said, "Let us go on a hunting trip, eating changes in the wilderness," they said. (21) "We shall do that," they said. They were the seven. They went taking with them tobacco and also taking nąbiruǧáč. (22) They went around underneath the earth. They declared that they would have their younger brother dead, and they tried to offer tobacco, but they would never receive it. They would say, "We are not his equal. (23) When he was blessed, I was present there," they would say. They went under all the earth, but they did not succeed. And they also went all over heaven above. Yet again they would reply in this way to what was said to them, (24) "He was blessed," they would say. Again they failed. Again they went about the second heaven. Again they failed. Again they went about the third heaven. Again they failed in the fourth heaven. (25) Then they came back to the earth. They went over the face of the earth, but they failed. And they came back without success. And near the lodge, unexpectedly, there sat an oval lodge [inset]. (26) There they went in. Unexpectedly, there was a woman. She was a really beautiful woman. And they did the tobacco with her, and they said, "We wish that our youngest brother were dead," they said to her. (27) And she replied in the affirmative. "Even though it is your brother, thus you have wished. If you come here with him, I will kill him," she said. They were thankful. "It is good," they said. (28) And when they were going home they said, "What shall we do? We'll come here with him," they said. They said, "Because she is a beautiful woman, we are courting her. (29) We'll be saying, 'We've been after her for a long time. Because we tried to get her, we have been speechless; that was our reason. Now she hits us and would even kick us. Therefore, we have told you.' (30) When we have said this to him, we will have aroused him to such a pitch that we will have gained our scheme," they said. "Hąho, that will be it," they said.
Then they got home. They pretended to keep it a secret. (31) And they told him what they agreed to tell him. That they told him. "We have promised our older brother to keep it in secret. Therefore, we are doing this in secret. Since we long ago already married women, we thought he would scold us, (32) so we are doing this in secret. We said this because we failed," and having said this, they persuaded him. They went with him. When they arrived there, he said to them, "You go. (33) However you go about this, I am going to go last," he said. One went. She scolded him soundly. Another one went. Again she scolded him. Finally, they all went there. (34) And finally he went. There he came. As she was lying down, he sat at her feet. "Lie down over there," she said. Then she said, "Lie down in the back. Why didn't you come long ago? (35) It is you yourself that I wanted to see. Instead, your brothers are bothering me," she said. "Lie down in the back," she said. Then he went to the back. There she had caused the ground to be cut and he fell. (36) She caused it to be covered over by something and he fell in. There he fell in. Then they came there and liked it. And they had nąbiruǧáč. The woman took the nąbiruǧáč from them.
(37) Then they came home. So Įčohoúšika did not return. Then in the night Hena bothered Įčorúšika's wife. The woman got angry, but he said, (38) "Our younger brother has been doing this beautiful woman for a long time. Over and over again, he would cause her heart to ache. Not a one of them did he marry. Therefore, you will not go home for this reason. (39) I myself will marry you," Hena said, but the woman steadfastly refused, but he used force anyway. Then Kunu objected, but he did not listen to him, and tried to use force. (40) So he grabbed hold of him. The others also helped. The younger one assisted, but as he was so much, it was not like anything. (41) Then he said to the women, "My dear sisters-in-law, go back to wherever you came from. From where she came, try to come back quickly and save her," he said to them. There he fought for his sister-in-law. In time they came for her. (42) They struck Kunu and his younger brother about the head, bruising them and causing significant injuries to their heads. There the seven of them built a separate lodge for themselves. They lived apart from them. (43) Kunu lived alone with his younger brother. And they would do it to them, mistreating them. All the time they would be mourning. (44) They would fool the two of them all the time. "My dear older brother, I've come home! An end to crying," they would say, then laughing, these would run away from the place.
(45) Meanwhile, as he lay there Įčorúšika's ears rang. To his amazement, he was flat on his back bound with irons in the center of a longhouse. Unexpectedly, the lodge was full of people sitting and smoking profusely. (46) He was lying in a Waterspirit lodge. To his surprise they said, "We anticipate greatly what our sister has earned for us. Just as soon as the guts turn white, we will drink the soup," they were saying. (47) They were anxious to eat. And unexpectedly there was a man sitting at the door. He said, "My lords, uncles, for all time I have been working here for you. (48) Whether on the surface of the earth, underwater, to the ends of the earth, I have never failed to do anyone of the things that you've asked. At some time I should say something, that in working for you I would not fail." (49) After he said this, they said, "Warbundle Bearer, it is a true thing, but if you mean the one lying in the center of the lodge, you have failed," they said to him. "Howo, I guess that's the way it is. Well, there they eat humans," he said and went out. (50) Another one said, "My lords, uncles, every since I have been here, in the heavens above, anyone of the things you have asked of me, I have never failed to do it for you. At times I think of all I have done, when I will have asked for one of the things, I will not fail." Again they said, "Warbundle Bearer, it's true, but if you are asking for the human here, it will not be so." (52) They were anxiously awaiting him that they might eat him. He too went out. Otter and Loon were saying this, "My friend, niži, I think something is going to happen. Let's try to get to a place of safety," they said. They came towards the surface of the earth. (53) Then he did this. Įčorúšika broke the iron bonds he had to pieces. "Hąho!" they said. They overflowed the door. Then he took up a piece of firewood and threw it at them. (54) As he struck one, it would start to blaze. He pressed the matter. Their town was aflame. But they jumped into the water. He chased them into the water. Then again he struck the waters with a piece of firewood. Then the waters themselves were set aflame. (55) There were two there that he did not kill. A boy and a girl, that many he spared. He said to them, "I thought I might put an end to you, (56) but what would human beings call 'Bad Waterspirits' (Wakjexišišik), I thought, so I have not destroyed you utterly, as the Creator himself has made you," thus he said. Then he came home. And there he saw them. As he was coming, Otter and Loon expressed their gratitude. (57) Because they took the side of human beings, therefore, they live on the surface of the earth.
When he had come back there, the woman was not in. Unexpectedly, she had pulled out a lodge pole and she went down there. (58) He chased after her. On and on they went. She even went through the core of solid trees. She even went through the core of solid grass blades, and also weeds. Then when night overtook her, she slept there in the core of a weed. (59) Therefore, she is the cause of the tubercles that lie on weeds. They are the sleeping places of bad women. And there he overtook her. "The thing to do is to try to kill this," he said to her. (60) There the woman was killed.
Then he came home. He came home there to his older brother. He got back there. Unexpectedly, they only were living separately. To his surprise, there his older brothers were. (61) They were living together. And when he got home, he told of what they did to him. They were always crying. They began to talk in good humor. When they came to see them, much to their surprise, he had gotten back there. "He is there at home. (62) Because he would do this, I said that we should not have done it." "Now we will be killed," they said. They quickly took charcoal and prepared for fasting. They began to cry. (63) Just the same, he had a piece of firewood and went toward them. The first one he clobbered a good one. Then a little fox went out of him. "Thus I had meant to destroy you utterly. (64) I thought, What will people call a 'fox'? So I have not killed you. A portion of your flesh will be taken away forever. You have tried to abuse the people," he said to them. (65) Out of mercy the people had tried to live with all the kinds of foxes and coyotes, but they were not worthy of compassion. They were bad.
(66) And these three were stars. The one star that is shining most greatly of the trio, it is he. The greatly shining white one, and the blue one, and the red one; (67) and Įčorúšika was the yellowish one. And the other ones, his older brothers, are also stars. They are the trio that are bunched together.
It is ended.1
Commentary. "four arms" — emphasis upon arms is often a feature of concepts of Orion (see the Comparative Material below). The significance of the four arms is probably to be found in archery. Įčorúšika is identical to Redhorn. Redhorn is able to transform himself into an arrow, and is the Chief of the Heroka, a race of little supernatural people who are the spirits of the arrow and the patrons of the hunt. In the beginning times, some of the female Heroka married their own cousins the Forked Men. The Forked Men are coupled with the arrow because they represent the bowman. They are split at the waist, having two heads and four arms. The two heads are the head of the man and the head of the arrow; the four hands are the bowman's own two plus the two string "hands" that grip and bend the bow in conjunction with the bowman's own hands. The bow itself extends about down to the waist. That Kunu is not said to have two heads or to be bifurcated at the waist, suggests that he is meant to symbolize just the bow itself.
"wore a face on each side of his ears" — this is a very well known figure and much discussed by archaeologists, who see his inspiration, in part at least, in the prosopomorphic earpieces that were widely known in the ancient Mississippian culture of the southeastern United States. He is more commonly known as "Redhorn" (Hešučka). In most accounts, one of the sons of Redhorn, who is identified with his father, is said to have man-faces on his ears, whereas his brother has them where his nipples would be. In another variant of the Redhorn Cycle, this second son is said to have the faces on his shoulders. These all form the same kind of pattern as we see from the inset. As will be seen below, Įčorúšika is the central star (Alnilam) of the three Belt Stars of Orion. The pattern created above is precisely that of these three stars of Orion with varying degrees of exaggeration. Omitted for mention at all in our story are the red hair and horn that are so essential to the other guises in which Įčorúšika appears in the literature. In the Redhorn myths, he is so called because he has red hair arranged in a scalp lock, which is metaphorically called a "horn" (he). In other stories, he is called "One Horn" because he has a single horn on his forehead. Given that the central star is Įčorúšika, it may be noted that the Sword Stars form a straight line that points directly to Alnilam. Since Įčorúšika is turned on its side when rising, the connecting point is not his chin, but his forehead. This horn, as is also shown below, is homologized to an arrow (also metaphorically a "horn"), which works out well with the Sword Stars because they form such a rigorously straight line. Part of the reason why the horn is seen as red and as hair is that the famous Orion Nebula, M42 (θ-1 Orionis), is "fuzzy" like hair or fur; and furthermore, it is decidedly red. However, the primary reason for the spirit's red hair is that the dawn or sunset colors the hair of this constellation when it rises or sets with the sun. In other mythologies, those who live near the sun are also said to have red hair.2*
"Įčo-horúšika" — the name comes from įčo, "face," and horucik, "to wear on the ears."3 This name uniquely belongs to Redhorn. By the rules of sandhi, it is contracted to Įčorúšika.
"once it was dark, he sang" — this is a widespread Hočąk symbol in which sound is substituted for light. As we learn at the end of the story, the brothers are stars, almost certainly the belt stars of Orion. When the stars come out, their shining is homologized to sound, in this case they are said to "sing." The isomorphism between light and sound, both being as we now know, waves, makes this symbolism natural and appropriate.
"they would dance in place where they were sitting" — the stars are fixed in their relative positions, where they "sit." However, as a group they move together holding their positions. This collective motion is their "dance." Orion rises at sunset around the winter solstice in December, and sets on that date a couple of hours before sunrise, so that it is up almost all night long. See Compartive Material under "dance."
"they did this all night long" — being a star, and therefore some kind of fire, Įčorúšika is allied to the sun and akin in nature to the Thunderbirds. In the waiką there is an all night dance, in which none of the brothers sleep. To sleep is to close one's eyes and lie down, which in sidereal terms is to set. There is indeed a period of time in which the Belt Stars (the three brothers) rise with the setting sun (January 5, 1750 at 5:27 pm) — in other words, they are "awake" all night.
"in the morning he painted an ax red" — the constellation of Orion as organized by the Hočągara has a shape reminiscent of an ax, as we see in the picture below. The ax is painted red to indicate that the sun is up. However, red is also associated with the west where this constellation sets. The asterism sets so precisely in the western direction that it can be used to determine that cardinal point. The red color also recalls one of Įčorúšika's other names, "Redhorn." Among the Crow, this same constellation is called the "Hand," and came into existence when the Twins sliced up an evil spirit, Red Woman, and threw her hand up into the heavens.
Orion as an Ax
Orion as a Packing Strap
"he also hung a pack strap at the back of the lodge" — the Hočąk version of the constellation Orion also looks like a packing strap hanging from the back wall of a lodge, as can be seen in the picture above. The ax and the packing strap are also found in the Sirius myth, "Old Man and Wears White Feather."
"then they went hunting" — another description of collective stellar motion.
"the woodpile was piled up with wood" — this is part of the female imagery of the moon. The moon with a dark spot on its back — the sole exception being the full moon — is homologized to a woman packing wood. The more crescent shaped the moon, the more wood she is carrying. The first woman, being the most crescent shaped of the group is the one that will be noted for contributing the most wood.
"she was sitting there" — as it happens, the gibbous moon that first appears near Orion in late December sets about 0030 hours nearly due west. The constellation Orion then follows, setting exactly on the same place on the horizon at ca. 0530 hours. This is the spot where "Hena sits."
"if you get sleepy and want to go to sleep, then do so" — this first and gibbous moon sets early in the morning (ca. 0030 hours). This setting is homologized to sleeping, since she now rests in the earth.
"they did this way for ten nights" — it can be seen in the image below, that there are ten moons in succession that appear in the vicinity of Orion beginning with the thinnest, a crescent moon of day one, and culminating on the tenth and last day with a full moon. The position of Orion is marked by the center "belt" star, Alnilam, which I shall argue below is the stellar identity of Įčorúšika.
"they performed the doing of wanąčére" & "they did wanąčére" — this is a very rich concept discussed at length by Radin:
Before a man started on a bear hunt he went through the following ceremony, known as wanąčére, literally "concentration of the mind." He either built a special lodge or used his own for the ceremony. A kettle containing food was placed on the fireplace; this was intended for the particular bear the man wished to kill. The food generally consisted of corn or dried fruit; tobacco and red feathers also were offered, the former in small bark vessels. All these offerings were made not only as sacrifices to the bear but in order to make the feast as tempting as possible. When everything was in readiness, the host rubbed two sticks having rough surfaces against each other, called naį́šarax or naįwaijók’ere. The host never ate. He continued his singing and rubbing until he attracted the attention of the bear, as indicated by the appearance of a little streak of flame passing from the fire toward the gifts he brought for him. The same ceremony was performed before starting on a deer or a raccoon hunt.4
Since Įčorúšika is identified with Herokaga, the chief of a lilliputian race of hunting spirits, it would not be out of place for him to use a magical ceremony that might otherwise normally be used for the seduction of game to the will of the hunter. The use of two rough sticks rubbed one against the other in the context of a fire ritual must call to mind the rubbing sticks that were used in the greatest antiquity to start fires. Now we are told they are used to make sound; but it is a well known Hočąk symbolic convention to represent light by sound. The object of the nąįšarax is to cause a flame to leap up. Once rubbing sticks caused the creation of the fire itself. It is to that fire that the sound refers, and the symbol of light is itself sympathetic magic employed to govern and control the flames by being in command of their very source. Naturally, given that both the Belt Stars as Heroka spirits and the Sword Stars as the red horn, are both arrows and therefore wooden sticks, it is the method of seduction appropriate to them as the constellation Orion.
"plumpest woman" — hirajaira hinųk-šį-ra, where the word šį denotes fat. In the interlinear, this is translated as, "the most beautiful." This shows a rather different criterion of beauty than currently prevalent in the West. This fat and beautiful woman is the full moon which occurs on the tenth day.
"nąbiruǧáč" — these are sacrificial items designed to be cast away into the wilderness. No one associated with such a sacrifice may retrieve these items, but if someone randomly chances upon them, they may keep them, since serendipity is seen in this context as the design of the spirits. See also the commentary to the "Journey to Spiritland."
"near the lodge" — this is confusing at an esoteric level. According to the interpretation developed below, in the astronomical code the woman who lives in this lodge represents an asterism essentially the same as the Old World's Scorpius. The lodge of the brothers is a representation of the night sky, the place where they live as stars. Scorpius is on the other side of the Milky Way from Orion. As Orion is about to undergo heliacal setting, this constellation begins to gain ascendancy. Achronically, Antares rises with the sunset at 2025 hrs., on 5/25/1750; and sets at sunrise at 0531 hrs., on 5/18/1750. Alnilam sets with the sun at 2016 hrs., on 5/19/1750.5 Where she lives in also in the night sky, but opposite from where the brothers live. Thus, her lodge seems to magically appear opposite that of the brothers. Her lodge is a duplicate of that of the brothers and is placed opposite their living site to show that she rises on the opposite side of the Milky Way from where the brothers are to be found. However, interestingly, this turns out not to be that far from where the brothers rise.
We could entertain the alternative idea that the lodge represents the place of the moon as it emerges above the horizon after conjunction with the sun. At the time (early May) when Orion is about to set with the sun, the moon would be very nearby. However, such an hypothesis proves untenable.
"a woman" — this woman would be expected to have a role in the astronomical code. Since she is a sister to the Waterspirits (see below), she herself should be a Waterspirit. Waterspirits in neighboring cultures are often portrayed as being more feline in nature, and as a consequence are usually called "Underwater Panthers." Other tribes, however, view them as being of a more reptilian character, specifically, they are seen as giant horned snakes that occupy the aqueous or subterranean underworld. Lankford has shown that in a number of cultures, the chief of these creatures, which he terms the "Great Serpent" is also identified with an asterism that is located almost exactly where the Old World constellation Scorpius is found.6 Since our Waterspirit woman stands opposed to Orion the way Scorpius does in the Greek myth, and she is cognate as to race with the Great Serpent, she is a particularly good candidate in an astronomical code for the role of Scorpius as an opponent of (Alnilam of) Orion.
The possibility that she is a moon could also be entertained. For more on this see above.
"a really beautiful woman" — the Hočąk is, Wogizok hinųkpįže. The word pį has the primary meaning of "good." In this context it is understood to mean "beautiful," and as will be clear by her subsequent conduct, it is not to be confused with moral excellence. The star Antares is a beautiful red color.
"we have been speechless" — the result of their trying to live with this woman has been that they were ejected from the lodge. Since the lodge represents the sky, the ejection of the brothers represents their disappearance from the sky altogether, which occurs when they set with the sun. Since sound = light, their being speechless is yet another way of depicting the same thing.
"kick us" — the rise of Antares in Scorpius pushes, as it were, the sky down on the other side of the horizon, causing Orion to set (as the ancient Greeks appreciated in their Orion myth when they said he was killed by the bite of Scorpius). The feet exemplify and therefore symbolize, the means of locomotion. It is by means of her "feet" that she rises into the sky. It is therefore her feet that cause the lower stars of Orion to set one by one. This is symbolized by her using her feet (kicking) to eject these stellar brothers from the lodge (the sky).
"I am going to go last" — this episode portrays the situation that occurs in the night sky (the lodge) when Antares (in Scorpius) rises as Orion sets with the sun. As will be argued below, the disloyal brothers represent the Sword Stars and others that lie below the Belt Stars that are Įčorúšika and his two loyal brothers. As Orion sets, the Sword Stars are first to disappear below the horizon. Therefore, in this group of brother-stars, Įčorúšika is the last of them to fall below the horizon.
"she scolded him" — given that sound = light, the scolding is the rising of Antares, which results in the ejection of each star of Orion one at a time, day by day. So she scolds one after another, he light appearing over the opposite horizon being the means by which the sky is tipped so as to cause these star brothers to disappear from the lodge of the night sky, which now belongs to her. The scolding also captures the antipathy inherent in their stellar opposition, as they cannot live under the same cosmic roof.
"she was lying down" — about the time that Alnilam sets with the sun, the Milky Way lies flat on the horizon from south to west to north. As Antares rises, the Milky Way at this time is still in a horizontal repose.
"he sat at her feet" — to say which star group is at the feet of the other is purely arbitrary. However, this idea is duplicated in reverse by the Greek version of the attack of Scorpius upon Orion, as it says, "Earth sent up against him [Orion] a scorpion of very great size by which he was stung and so perished." The natural place for a standing figure like the Greek Orion to be stung is the foot, yet Scorpius is on the other side of the Milky Way from Orion. Being at the foot of Scorpius is really to be at the other terminus of the Milky Way, the same as the Greek, only the converse relation, which in this case is symmetrical. At the time of the heliacal setting of Orion, the Milky Way lies flat along the western horizon running from south to north. So it is perfectly natural to speak of both Alnilam (Įčorúšika) and the woman (Antares) as "lying down," one at the foot of the other.
"lie down" — as Orion approaches the western horizon, the three Belt Stars are parallel with the horizon, so that they are as if they were lying down.
"back" — the place where Orion is to lie would be very literally in the back of her lodge, as Orion is on the opposite side of the Milky Way from Scorpius. Sacred lodges face with their door to the east where the sun rises. At this time, Orion is in the west, almost due west, so by this criterion as well, the star Alnilam is in the back of the lodge of the night sky.
"he fell in" — when Alnilam experiences its heliacal setting, it appears to fall below ground and not to emerge again until 45 days later when it rises with the sun in the east. It is the ascension of Antares — here by hypothesis the identity of the Waterspirit woman — that tips the celestial sphere in the direction of Scorpius' rise and therefore drives that part of the Celestial Sphere on which Orion is found down below the horizon. In allegory, Antares is treated as the agent of this tipping that causes Orion to fall through the earth into the subterranean abode of the Waterspirits. Notice that the brothers who preceded Įčorúšika (Alnilam) were driven out of the lodge, whereas he was called to fall down below the lodge. This give the semiotic equation, out = down. As the stars pass over the horizon, they go as far beyond it as possible, while also going down below the earth.
The lunar interpretation is weak here, as the moon actually progresses in the opposite direction, away from the sinking Orion and eventually back to the east by the opposite route.
On the table below, the times when Orion and of Alnilam (Įčorúšika) set or rise with the sun are given for the latitude of Milwaukee:
|Star:||Date:||Star Setting (pm) or Rising (am) at:||Sun Setting (pm) or Rising (am) at:|
|Rigel||May 14, 1750||7:07 pm||7:05 pm|
|Betelgeuse||June 4, 1750||7:24 pm||7:24 pm|
|Bellatrix||June 30, 1750||4:16 am||4:16 am|
|Saiph||July 18, 1750||4:28 am||4:29 am|
|Alnilam (Įčorúšika)||May 24, 1750||7:16 pm||7:15 pm|
|Alnilam (Įčorúšika)||July 9, 1750||4:20 am||4:21 am|
The year 1750 was chosen as a recent time that still predates the serious cultural impacts of the whites. This means that the whole constellation formed by the three brothers and the four hands of Kunu started to sink into the lake on May 14 of that year. The constellation had completely sunk into the lake by June 4 of that year. It began to reappear just at sunrise on June 30, and had completely risen from the waters by the morning of July 18 (Saiph being the last of these stars to come above the horizon). Its complete absence from the sky was for a period of 27 days. From the first time it started to sink into the lake until the first time it started to reemerge, is a period of 66 days.7 The period of Alnilam's stay in the underworld is 46 days. What of the disappearance of Įčorúšika into the abode of the Waterspirits? As we have seen, between May 24 and July 10 in the year 1750, Alnilam (Įčorúšika) could not be seen at night. Put in mythological terms, Įčorúšika (Alnilam) is never seen to rise from the waters. Nevertheless, it is with the sun, and therefore has in its possession a fire that can light the waters. It is therefore with the sun that he strikes the Waterspirits. Thus Otter and Loon ask for clemency, since Įčorúšika is in effect one of their own.
"it was not like anything" — hįké wažą žesgenįže, a Hočąk idiom meaning that the situation is nearly out of control. In other contexts it can mean "beyond compare."
"bruising them" — Miner has the following definition for the Hočąk word here, gipąną́, "to give something a blow on the head that bruises, without breaking the skin."
The episode in which Hena and his allied brothers abuse the others turns out to be isomorphic to the sham courting episode:
|Episode 1||Episode 2|
|Coyote and fox brothers bring nąbirugač offerings to the Waterspirit woman.||Hena, the fox brother, offers himself to Įčorúšika's wife as a husband.|
|She is a very beautiful woman.||She is the most beautiful woman of all the wives.|
|They request from her the disappearance of their brother Įčorúšika.||The coyote and fox brothers tease the loyal brothers by saying falsely that Įčorúšika is back.|
|The brothers engage in sham courting.||Hena offers to make Įčorúšika's wife his own. He later attempts to take her by force.|
|The woman feigns anger.||The woman is angry.|
|The woman abuses the brothers physically.||The coyote and fox brothers physically abuse the loyal brothers and wife.|
|Įčorúšika enters, the brothers remain outside.||The coyote and fox brothers and the loyal brothers separate.|
In both episodes the brothers present offerings to the woman in question, but in the second episode this offering is Hena himself. This courtship is also sham, but in a very different way. Hena is not taking "no" for an answer, so he is not really courting or trying to rely on mere persuasion. In both cases it is a mere pretense of courting. The sham abuse of the conspiratorial brothers by the Waterspirit woman of Episode 1 is replaced in Episode 2 by real abuse, although that abuse is not too serious and falls well short of mayhem. In one case they petition for the disappearance of the brother while he is still on earth, and in the second case they say he is here when he has in fact disappeared. In both episodes the brothers group themselves into separate cliques in accord with their standing and keep apart from one another during the action.
"mourning" — people who go into mourning blacken their faces with charcoal. This charcoal is the darkness that closes over their faces (stars) when Kunu and the penultimate brother sink below the waters. Since Alnitak and Mintaka are on a line with Alnilam, when the latter falls into the underworld and its light is extinguished, so too is the light of the former two. However, this fact has to be expressed differently allegorically, since the adventures undergone by Įčorúšika are distinguished from those of his brothers.
"ears rang" — the living faces on Įčorúšika's ears are probably another form of his two loyal brothers, the other two Belt Stars of Orion, as was suggested above. The Hočąk word for "ringing" in syllabic script is w ni reKe, which appears to be wąnisge, from wą, "yelling, shouting, calling," and nisge, "like, as if." So it was as if his ears were yelling at him. Normally, sound stands for light, and shouting for bright light; however, this is not a radiating sound, but a private one, one concealed from the perception of others. It seems therefore to advance the theory that the light of stars which have set with the sun persists underground, although it cannot, of course, be seen. The word wąnisge forms some interesting puns. The slightly variant form wanisge can mean "like snow." These stars are white and fall as a solid from the sky, where they come under the purview of the Waterspirits. However, a more interesting pun using wanisge is the one that means, "like corn." Indian corn is polychrome. Like the conventional colors assigned to these stars, some kernels can be blue, red, or white. The kernels originate above the ground in the corn ears. The stars are like small kernels sprinkled around the sky. As seed corn, the kernels are buried in the ground, just as certain stars seem to gestate beneath the earth. After a time, both corn kernels and stars reappear in the sky.
"our sister" (hinųk hičapwira) — literally, "our woman" (cf. Common Indo-European, *swe-sor, "sister, our woman." Sanskrit, svásar; Avestic, xvarehar; Greek, éor ("daughter, cousin"); Latin, soror; Old Church Slavic, sestrina; Old Prussian, swiria ("sister's son"); Old Irish, siur; Welsh, chwaer; Old Cornish, huir; Gothic, swístar; Old Norse, syster; Old High German, swester; Old English, sweostor, suster.8 [For *sor, see English "sorority"]. The Common Indo-Europeans are believed to have had, like the Hočągara, the Crow-Omaha type of kinship system.) This reference to the woman who tricked Įčorúšika seems to demonstrate that she is a Waterspirit. However, it is clear, for instance, that the Waterspirit Bluehorn has at least one lunar sister who does not seem to be a Waterspirit herself. Just the same, in this case, the Bluehorn myths make it clear that they are step-sisters, women that he has adopted and assigned to a non-nuptial role. It seems rather more likely that this woman is a genuine Waterspirit, and a genuine, full, biological sister to the Waterspirits.
"Warbundle Bearer" — the Hočąk is Wagixána, which denotes the person assigned the honor of carrying the Warbundle, a packet containing items of power that are particularly effective in warfare. The translation gives "our nephew," which is correct only inasmuch as the nephew of the dočąwąk or warleader is always the one to carry the warbundle. By referring to his nephew in this fashion he at once reminds him of the warlike character of the present circumstances, and his implied dedication to his uncle, the one who is addressing him.
"Loon" — here the Hočąk is Tosega. J. O. Dorsey gives the variant, t’ósera, which he says denotes, "the gray and spotted loons." Loon need not be considered a Waterspirit himself. As Warbundle Bearer, he is the nephew of the leader, who is here a Waterspirit. This makes him the leader's sister's son, and he may therefore be only half Waterspirit, depending on the status of his father. Otter and Loon also express something of the nature of Įčorúšika. Like Otter and Loon, he too is a diver, disappearing into the Waterspirit world for 46 days; and like them is not fully aquatic by nature, but spends most of his time in the upper world.
"overflowed" — hagiginiže, which appears to mean something like "crowded themselves out." This clever turn of phrase by the translator plays upon the fact that the panic at the door is by Waterspirits, whose spiritual nature is water itself.
"he struck the waters with a piece of firewood" — the Hočąk for "firewood" is ną-’ųste, which literally means, "wood to burn." A ną’ųste can be a fire log, a stick used to transfer fire, or even an ember.9 Here the central Belt Star of Orion is made the agent for setting the waters on fire. This is not the only time that he has been portrayed as doing this. In the "Baldheaded Warclub Origin Myth," in his form as One Horn (Redhorn), he takes off his "horn" from the center of his forehead and sets the waters ablaze with it. After that he is called Herokaga, "Without Horns." The Heroka spirits who bear this name are hunting spirits who are in essence the spirits of the arrow. When they shoot their bows, they contain no arrows — they merely pull the bowstrings back and forth while uttering the "Heroka breathings," ahahe ahahe! They, being the power of the arrow itself, need no material arrow in their bows to project its effects. The arrow is also known as a "red (projecting) horn," so the Heroka are therefore without horns, here meaning, without arrows. Therefore, the Heroka Redhorn/Įčorúšika is seen to transfer the fire of the sun to the surface of the water, making it red ("aflame"). Yet the "horn" and "firewood" by which he accomplishes this feat is also an arrow. The arrow also serves as a firestick (nąpaji’ųna) which is spun by the bow onto a hearth board to create fire. Clearly Redhorn/Įčorúšika is, as the agent of igniting the Waterspirit world, a starter of fire. This turns the shaft of the Belt Stars into a firestick, and the bow symbolized by the four hands of Kunu (see above) into the fire starter bow. Since the shaft of the "arrow" formed by the Belt Stars is perfectly upright when it rises at dawn, it makes a perfect firedrill, with the red of the dawn being the fire, and the clouds of the eastern horizon the smoke. See the Comparative Material below that helps to show that there is a continuum from the fire starter concept of Orion through to the hand concept of the northern plains.
"the waters themselves were set aflame" — this is the last act in the drama of the fight with the Waterspirits. Įčorúšika is now rising with the sun. When this happens, the twilight gives way to the red sun of dawn which turns the surface of the waters red. This is the "fire" of his firestick.
"the woman was not in" — this fits perfectly the interpretation that identifies the female Waterspirit as (Antares of) Scorpius. Now that Orion has emerged from the subterranean world, which is to say, in the time after which this constellation rises with the sun, the fortunes of Scorpius are reversed, and it sets as Orion rises; and as Orion stays in the sky higher and longer, so Scorpius stays there lower and for a shorter time. When Orion rises in August, Scorpius has long set, and is therefore "not in."
Here the lunar interpretation for the Waterspirit woman does not fit, for when a moon declines, it does so in the east, the very place where Orion rises. They would, therefore, be expected to cross paths just as they do in the sky.
"a lodge pole" — in the "House of Scorpio," at the very center of this end of the Milky Way, there is a dark strip (the Great Rift) running up its "spine." Just below this lies Scorpius and its red star, Antares. As Orion gains ascendancy upon his return to the sky, it is as if this dark column or pole has opened at its base allowing Scorpius to descend into the ground beneath it.
The Great Rift
"he chased after her" — any hypothesis that the Waterspirit woman is a moon seems to collapse here. The moon and Orion actually go in opposite directions, parting in the west and crossing paths with one another in the east. However, Scorpius and Orion are held in tandem by the Milky Way, and like all the other fixed stars, move in the same direction. Now that Orion is coming up in the sky, Scorpius of course, is falling from it. It is as though Scorpius is fleeing with Orion in pursuit. (Cf. a similar chase in "The Seduction of Redhorn's Son.")
"the core of solid trees" — the Milky Way above Scorpius looks like nothing so much as a tree with the dark central strip (the Great Rift) acting as its trunk. In "The Red Man" the other end of the Milky Way where Orion is found is also homologized to a tree. It should be noted here that "Schele and Freidel believe the tree of creation often portrayed in Maya iconography to be the upright Milky Way, the double-headed serpent wrapped around it representing the ecliptic."10
"solid grass blades" — inasmuch as the Milky Way above Scorpius looks like a pine or poplar, it also looks like a blade of grass.
"weeds (roxek)" — the Milky Way at Scorpius also looks like a weed leaf. The set of botanical analogies can be seen to fit this portion of the galaxy seen in the inset.
"the tubercles that lie on weeds" — in the inset above, it may be seen that there is a small round cloud at the edge of the Milky Way just where the star Antares is situated. The Hočąk word here translated in context as "tubercle" is š’ok, which means, "round, ball-like; lump." For another example of the effects of a weed tubercle (raxek š’ok), see the Commentary to "Trickster Eats the Laxative Bulb."
"bad women (hinųk waroni)" — this is a euphemism for witches.
"there he overtook her" — this proves to be quite a puzzle: how can one fixed star overtake another? Strickly speaking, by modern understanding of visual astronomy, it is simply impossible. However, if we suppose that stars that set with the sun and therefore disappear from the sky are still underground, then it is possible for such a view to be held. Antares sets with the sun at 1732 on 11/16/1750, and rises with the sun at 0806, 11/30/1750.11 At this time of the year, Orion is at the peak of its power. The segment of the Milky Way to which Antares is attached also disappears from the sky and goes into the underworld. When Alnilam sets for the evening, it too descends into this same underworld. There he catches up to her as she is hiding on the tubercle of the weed leaf.
"there the woman was killed" — death here, as it often is elsewhere in stellar codes, symbolizes the heliacal setting of a star, its disappearance from the world of the visible, the home of the stars in the night sky.
"crying" — this is a widespread type of symbolism in Hočąk astronomical codes: sound stands for light. This therefore means that these stars are beginning to rise, which we know is the case because their brother Įčorúšika is among them.
"prepared for fasting" — that is, they blackened their faces. This procedure was used in mourning and in appealing to the spirits for a blessing. The foxes and coyotes that are the complementary set of brothers, still form a group of stars that fall within our Orion but which clearly trail behind the three brothers who make up the Belt Stars. The black face is the darkening of the stars which means that they are not yet in the sky at the time when their brother Įčorúšika (Alnilam) returns "home" (to the sky). They have set themselves apart from the three brothers who form the Belt Stars.
"to cry" — this is again sound for light, but in a way that is very informative, allowing us to make a number of important deductions. It shows that the seven brothers are stars that are now rising, and are doing so not long after the Belt of Orion has reappeared. Therefore, these stars trail behind them, but are not very far away. Consequently, they should be stars of Orion, and no doubt include the Sword Stars. See the next entry.
"a portion of your flesh will be taken away forever" — translated as, "You shall live in want all your days." This condition is reflected in another story in which the fat is squeezed out of Fox until all that is left is a little in his upper legs (see Hare Recruits Game Animals for Humans, v. 3). However, this is the first fox struck. He is struck with a piece of firewood which is symbolic of rising with the sun. As a result, a fox jumps out (into view), which is to say that a star then appears to view above the red-tipped trees of dawn's horizon. There can be little doubt that the fox is M42 (the Orion Nebula). Unlike the other Sword Stars, or indeed any other stars of Orion, it is fuzzy and pale, as though it was as furry as a fox and as deprived of bulk. Furthermore, it is a reddish color, like the coat of a fox. M42 must certainly be one of the fox brothers since it is a prominent "star" of Orion and very close to the Belt Stars while yet trailing behind them. Identifying the Orion Nebula with a fox explains why nothing is said of Įčorúšika having a horn or red scalplock as he is when he is called "Only One Horn" and "Redhorn." It would also help explain why Orion is connected with foxes elsewhere.
"foxes and coyotes" — some of the brothers who plotted against the stellar brothers turn out to be foxes. There are two kinds of foxes in North America, the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) and the gray fox (Urocyon cinereoargenteus). Wisconsin falls within the northern range of the latter variety of fox. The gray fox is of particular interest, since it is capable of climbing trees and will even build its den in them. However, in the northern part of its range, it more typically builds its den on or below ground, often taking over those of other animals such as the porcupine.12 Thus the gray fox is both similar to stars, in living above the ground, and similar to Waterspirits, in building dwellings below the ground. Red foxes may form communal dens.13* The mating season of foxes usually extends from December through April.14* Foxes are characterized by pair bonding, so each fox usually has just one mate as suggested by this waiką.15 Their gestation period averages about 59 days (52 for the red fox), a good approximation to the time that Alnilam is no longer visible in the night sky.16* M42, however, is absent about 45 days, heliacally setting on 0822:09 on 5/23/1750, and heliacally rising at 0525:14 on 7/7/1750.
"shining most greatly" — despite the fact that Mintaka is δ Orionis and Alnilam is ε Orionis, in fact Alnilam is the brighter of the two, and the brightest of the trio of Belt Stars. This would make Alnilam the star of Įčorúšika, which places him in the middle of the Belt Stars. His star is just slightly out of alignment, which makes him distinctive among this trio of stars. His location and alignment serve to show, as done above, that he is the head of Redhorn, and the two faces on his ears are likely the two stars on either side of him.
Sunrise, July 19, 1750
Starry Night Software
"white one, and the blue one, and the red one" — it has been maintained here that the three stars in question are the Belt Stars of the constellation Orion. We know that these colors are not given in spatial order since Įčorúšika is the brightest star and centrally located, yet the brightest star is said to be white. However, the raconteur equivocates with Įčorúšika's star by saying that it is essentially white (ska), although somewhat "yellowish" (zi-nisge). Therefore, the first star mentioned is the second star in the series. As a matter of fact, all three stars are essentially white, perhaps just a little bluish, although it is hard to detect. So how is it that the Belt stars can be called "blue, white/yellow, and red"? We know, for instance, that the Evening Star is called "the red star," not because it is red, but because it is often found against the red background of the sky at sunset. His name "Bluehorn" is of similar derivation. As the sun sets the last remaining blue of the sky hangs at the horizon, and this is seen as the hair of Evening Star, eliptically denoted by the word he, "horn," given that queues look like horns. He is also known as "the Blue Man." Similarly, Alnilam is called "Redhorn," since his emergence into the sky from the underworld in July, puts him against the red background of dawn. In like fashion, he is called "the Red Man." This shows that the colors assigned to stars may have nothing to do with their intrinsic appearance. Alnilam, as Įčorúšika, is white because he is holy, and being the most powerful, he is also called the youngest. In the actual ascent of these stars, Mintaka (Kunu) is the first to rise, Alnilam the second, and the star of the penultimate brother, Alnitak, is the last. As a result, Alnitak lingers in the red of dawn after both Alnilam and Mintaka have moved beyond it, as can be seen in the representation of dawn in July in the picture above. By the usual conventions, Mintaka would be "blue" (tco) and Alnitak "red" (šuč). As the oldest of Įčorúšika's brothers, Mintaka is blue, and as the youngest of Įčorúšika's brothers, Alnitak is red. In Hočąk color coding in clothing, the color tco (blue through green) is worn by old people, and clothing of the color red is worn by young people.17* So this works out into a nice correlation. As a person, Įčorúšika is the youngest, which is to say, the strongest; but his star is intermediate in the ascent into the sky, and so his color is intermediate between tco and šuč, which is zi (yellow). As the holiest of the three brothers, he is in a league of his own, and is assigned the color of holiness itself, white.
On the other hand, the star colors may hint at a variant view still centered on Alnilam. In the three Belt Stars we can see that they form a line with Alnilam just slightly out of alignment. This same pattern is repeated in a crossing direction. Given that Alnilam is the white/yellow star in the middle, the two book-end stars would now be Betelgeuse and Rigel. This set does have the literal colors required: Betelgeuse is red and Rigel is a bluish-white, and provided there is no light pollution, they can be seen to be such with the naked eye. It must be said against their candidacy, however, that they are not "bunched together."
"the trio" — the constellation of stars that best fits the description given in the myth is Orion. This is not, of course, precisely the Orion constellation inherited by the West, but a very near approximation to it. The three stars corresponding to the three brothers are those that form the "belt" of our Orion. The four arms of Kunu would be the four stars that frame this "belt": Rigel, Bellatrix, Betelgeuse, and Cursa (β Eridani). (For Orion and arms, see the Comparative Material below.) Įčorúšika is said to have a face (įčo) on each earlobe, which would make him the center star of our Orion's belt, with the other two stars flanking him. Thus Įčorúšika would be the star Alnilam (ε Orionis), whose magnitude is 1.7, making it the brightest of the three stars, and the 29th brightest in the sky. The red star, which probably represents penultimate brother, is Alnitak (ζ Orionis), having the second most powerful magnitude at 2.1. The blue star, Mintaka (δ Orionis), whose magnitude is 2.5, should represent Kunu, the eldest of the three brothers. Here the doctrine that the youngest is strongest holds. These facts are best tabulated:18
|Scientific Name:||ζ Orionis||ε Orionis||δ Orionis|
|Magnitude:||1.79 or less||1.7||2.0 or less|
|Proposed Identification:||Next to Youngest (Penultimate) Brother||Įčorúšika||Kunu|
The situation of the brightest star, the one identified with Įčorúšika, in the center of the Orion "belt" fits in well with another important set of images associated with Redhorn/Įčorúšika. These are the two living heads hanging from his ears that give Įčorúšika his name. These two animate heads are another image of the trio of stars that form this very noticeable set. As stars they twinkle, so it is said of the heads that they wink, stick out their tongues, and laugh, all processes isomorphic to the rapid pulsing of light that constitutes twinkling.
"bunched together" — a survey of stars observable to the naked eye shows that there are really not too many triads of stars that are bunched together apart from the Belt Stars of Orion. Here is a survey of the potential candidates:
|Aquila||Aquila is a good candidate, with three stars very tightly bunched together: Tarazed (mag. 2.71), Altair (mag. 0.75), Alshain (mag. 3.68). The third star is rather faint, and there are other stars of the fourth magnitude interpersed among the trio. There are no distinct outlying stars that could serve as the four hands. Aquila is almost on the other side of the celestial sphere from Orion.|
|Canis Major||There are three bright stars in a bunch, but there are too many lesser stars in the same bundle and no obvious set of four hand stars.|
|Columbo||The three stars with Pheat in the center, are not very tightly bunched together: Wazn (mag. 3.09), Pheat (mag. 2.62), ε Columbæ (mag. 3.84). One of the candidates for a hand star (γ Columbæ, mag. 4.34) is more closely bundled with the center than the other hands.|
|Lupus||Lupus has an elbow-shaped trio of stars. However, there are so many other outlying stars that no four of them stand out as hand stars. At the lattitude of Madison, Wisconsin, these stars are so low in the sky that they are usually not visible.|
|Orion||Orion has three belt stars in tight alignment with four outlying stars (Betelgeuse, Bellatrix, Rigel, and Cursa) that can serve as hand stars. The sword stars are also three bunched together, but the middle one, M42, is a nebula and appears faint and hazy.|
|Sagittarius||Sagittarius has so many sets of three that none of them stand out, and it is hard to see four outlying stars that can serve as hands.|
|Scorpius||Antares is the center of three stars, τ Scorpii (mag. 2.81), Antares (mag. 1.03), Al Niyat (mag. 2.87); but there are no candidates for the four hand stars. This trio can be ruled out, since Antares, the center star is neither yellow nor white, but is distinctly red. Shaula is another trio in Scorpius, but this cluster is really a cluster of six.|
|Taurus||The three stars to the right of Bellatrix form a unit, but they are not very prominent: π3 Orionis (mag. 4.34), π2 Orionis (mag. 3.18), π Orionis (mag. 3.65); nor are there four obvious candidates for the hand stars.|
It will be found impossible to substitute one of these candidates for Orion and have it work for the literature of Redhorn and his many cognates (Įčorúšika, One Horn, Herokaga, Redman, Hit with Deer Lungs). It is interesting to note that the three stars that the Zuñi characterize in the same way, calling them Ipilasha, "Keeping Close Together," are also believed to be Orion's Belt.19 The Zenacanteca Maya call these three stars, ’osh-lot, "three together."20
Isomorphisms. The story of the Waterspirit witch and the great chase after her is significantly isomorphic to the episode in the Redhorn Cycle entitled, "The Seduction of the Son of Redhorn." See that story for a table of isomorphisms.
Another important set of isomorphisms to our story is found in an Aztec myth.
|Paradigm||Įčorúšika and His Brothers||Aztec|
|Two [sets of] brothers go on a hunting trip.||A band of brothers go on a hunting trip.||Two brothers, Xiuhnel and Mimich, go on a hunting trip.|
|They are kinsman of the god of the hunt.||They are the brothers of Įčorúšika (who is Chief of the Heroka, spirits of the hunt).||They are Mixcoa, akin to Mixcoatl, god of the hunt.|
|A dangerous spirit woman comes to earth.||A Waterspirit woman ascends to earth and makes a lodge there.||Two deer descend from the heavens, each having two heads.|
|The brothers spend the whole day seeking after spirits during their hunting trip.||The brothers seek the spirits all day, and finally come to a solitary lodge.||Xiuhnel and Mimich chase after them all day.|
|At a lodge in the wilderness, they find the spirit woman.||It is a lodge of a beautiful woman.||The deer change into women.|
|The first brother and the woman enter into the lodge together.||They enter into her lodge.||They invite the brothers to come to them, but Xiuhnel asked one of the women to come to his shelter instead.|
|The woman plots against one of the brothers.||They plot against Įčorúšika with her.||The women are plotting against the brothers.|
|The woman seduces one of the brothers into lying with her.||She tricks Įčorúšika into lying beside her.||One of the women lies with Xiuhnel in order to trick him.|
|She intends to eat the brother.||As Įčorúšika goes to lie at the back of the lodge, he falls through into the underworld, where he is bound and held by the Bad Waterspirits to be eaten.||The woman bites into Xiuhnel's chest, then eats him. [The other woman intends the same for Mimich.]|
|The woman takes an offering from the first brother.||The woman takes the nąbiruǧáč offerings from the brothers.||The woman eats [the heart of] Xiuhnel.|
|She physically attacks the first brother causing him to disappear [die], leaving the second brother alone with her.||She kicks the brothers of Įčorúšika and drives them away, leaving Įčorúšika alone with her.||She kills Xiuhnel, leaving Mimich alone.|
|The second brother is faced with the woman (the mate of the first brother). An attempted seduction (by force ?) is rejected.||Henaga (Second Born) seizes Įčorúšika's wife, but she flees to where she had come from.||The other woman, Itzpapalotl, tries to seduce Mimich, but he rejects her.|
|The second brother creates a fire right before the spirits through which he escapes.||Įčorúšika grabs a firebrand and sets the world of the Bad Waterspirits on fire. He then escapes.||Mimich drills fire, then leaps into it.|
|The woman and the second brother chase each other through the world that he had set aflame.||She pulls up one of her lodge poles, and flees underground. Įčorúšika runs after her.||Itzpapalotl leaps into the fire and chases after him.|
|The woman lodges herself into an undesirable plant.||In her flight she passes through grass leaves and tree trunks, but finally hides inside a weed, and becomes the cause of tubercles that are now found on weeds.||She fell into a pot cactus and became stuck.|
|The second brother meets up with the woman in the plant, and kills her.||Įčorúšika caught up to the woman and killed her.||Mimich found Itzpapalotl and shot her to death.|
|He burns her body.||Įčorúšika had burned the Waterspirits.||They burned Itzpapalotl's body.21|
Both traditions seem to have innovated from what we might infer as to the form of a hypothetical prototype. This prototype would seem to have been a story about two brothers and just one woman. The Hočągara have made it about two sets of brothers, and the Aztecs have introduced two women, although one of them mysteriously drops out of the story.
Comparative Material. For an Aztec parallel, see "Isomorphisms" above.
The four arms of Kunu are not the only example of the importance of arms in the concept of Orion. The Arabs named Betelgeuse, Yad al Jausa, "Hand of Jausa," after a female giant with whose body the constellation of Orion had been identified.22 She was also known to them as Ibt al Jauzah (> Beit Algueze), "The Armpit of the Giant," or "Arm of the Central One." In Sanskrit Orion is called Bahu, "The Arm," and in Coptic, Klaria, "The Armlet."23
An interesting parallel to our waiką is the Hebrew myth of Joseph. Joseph was one of twelve brothers. The sons of Jacob and Leah were Reuben, Simeon, Levi, Judah, Issachar, and Zebulun; the sons of Rachel were Joseph and Benjamin; the sons of Bilhah, Rachel's handmaid were Dan and Naphtali; and the sons of Zilpah, Leah's handmaid were Gad and Asher. He is treated as the favorite by his father Jacob, which caused his other brothers to resent him. Joseph had prophetic dreams one of which he interpreted as meaning that some day his brothers would bow down to him. His father gave him a coat of many colors and sent him to help his brothers herd the sheep. His brothers conspired to kill him and attribute his death to wild animals, but the oldest brother Reuben overruled them and had him imprisoned in a pit so that they might take him back later. So they took his coat and cast him in a pit, but while they were eating, a band of Ishmaelites passed by on the way to Egypt, so they sold him to them as a slave. They showed their father his cloak, which they stained with animal blood, and said he must have been attacked by wild animals. Meanwhile, Joseph was a servant in Egypt and at one point was cast into prison, but due to his prophetic powers, he eventually rose to the highest rank below the Pharaoh. A famine came over the land of Israel and Jacob sent all the brothers except Benjamin, the youngest, to petition for grain from the Egyptians. Joseph knew them, and tested them, holding the second oldest brother, Simeon, as a hostage on the promise that they would deliver up to him their youngest brother. When they returned, he forgave them and gave them food, and when Pharaoh heard of it, he granted them land in the Kingdom of Egypt.24
After arguing that Samson is Orion, Giorgio de Santillana and Hertha von Dechend present the following Hebrew Bible story, in which the wife of Samson is given away to his companion, and in retaliation the strongman avenges himself on the Philistines.
(4) And Samson went and caught three hundred foxes, and took fire-brands, and turned tail to tail, and put a firebrand in the midst between two tails. (5) And when he had set the brands on fire, he let them go into the standing corn of the Philistines, and burnt up both the shocks, and also the standing corn, with the vineyards and olives. (6) Then the Philistines said, Who hath done this? And they answered, Samson, the son-in-law of the Timnite, because he had taken his wife, and given her to his companion. And the Philistines came up, and burnt her and her father with fire. (7) And Samson said unto them, Though ye have done this yet will I be avenged of you, and after that I will cease. (8) And he smote them hip and thigh with a great slaughter: and he went down and dwelt in the top of the rock Etam.25
If de Santillana and von Dechend are correct about the identity of Samson, here again we see the themes of the association of Orion with foxes, the mishandling of his wife, and revenge through fire.
In another set of stories, Orion is tied to other heroes from far flung places.26
The Sacred Book of the ancient Maya Quiche, the famous Popol Vuh (the Book of Counsel) tells of Zipacna, son of Vucub-Caquix (= Seven Arara). He sees 400 youths dragging a huge log that they want as a ridgepole for their house. Zipacna alone carries the tree without effort to the spot where a hole has been dug for the post to support the ridgepole. The youths, jealous and afraid, try to kill Zipacna by crushing him in the hole, but he escapes and brings down the house on their heads. They are removed to the sky, in a "group," and the Pleiades are called after them.
Then there is a true avenger-of-his-father, the Tuamotuan Tahaki, who, after long travels, arrives in the dark at the house of the goblin band who tortured his father. He conjures upon them "the intense cold of Havaiki" (the other world) which puts them to sleep.
Then Tahaki gathered up the net given to him by Kuhi, and carried it to the door of the long house. He set fire to the house. When the goblin myriads shouted out together "Where is the door?" Tahaki called out: "Here it is." They thought it was one of their own band who had called out, and so they rushed headlong into the net, and Tahaki burned them up in the fire.27
What the net could be is known from the [Hawaiian] story of Kaulu. This adventurous hero, wanting to destroy a she-cannibal, first flew up to Makalii the great god, and asked for his nets, the Pleiades and the Hyades, into which he entangled the evil one before he burned down her house.28 It is clear who was the owner of the nets up there. The Pleiades are in the right hand of Orion on the Farnese Globe,29 and they used to be called the "lagobolion" (hare net). The Hyades were for big game.30
The net theme is elegantly reconfigured in the Hočąk by the bottleneck naturally created by the door to the lodge. The fire that Įčorúšika wields is the solar fire that burns up the stars (conjunction) in his immediate neighborhood as he himself escapes back into the sky unburned.
There also exists a story about Orion among the Chimu and Moche peoples of Peru that involves a conflict among the stars. It is said that Alnilam was a thief and that Alnitak and Mintaka were two agents sent by the moon to capture him. They are holding him down on either side of him, while four buzzards (Bellatrix, Betelgeuse, Rigel, and Saiph) are circling overhead with the intent of eating the thief.31
"dance" — the Greeks also portrayed the motion of the stars as dancing. Plato in Timæus 40 mentions of the dances (χορεῖαν) of the stars; Censorinus 13, describes the dance (τὸ χορεῖον) of the stars; and Euripides, Electra 467, speaks of the "æthereal choruses of the stars, the Pleiades, the Hyades" (ἄστρων τ’ αἰθέριοι χοροὶ, Πλειάδες, Ὑάδες).32
Orion Mythology. A section of this title is found on its own independent page (presently under construction). It demonstrates that the mythology found in "Įčorúšika and His Brothers" is also found in the Orion mythology of other tribes, including those of Mexico.
On the Similarities and Differences between the Greek Orion and the Hočąk Įčorúšika. On initial and cursory examination, the myths that the Greeks tell about Orion do not seem to agree with what we have from the Hočągara on Įčorúšika. Since they are, ex hypothesi, about the same subject, they should have some degree of similarity. Therefore, it is necessary to give some account of the divergences and why they show apparent disagreement.
The Birth of Orion. One of the chief divergences between the Greek and Hočąk traditions regarding Orion is his basic character. In Greece, he is morally dubious; whereas Redhorn is a savior spirit, and is always counted among the good spirits. The source of this divergence is the importance placed on the ancient intoxicant mead (honey wine). Kerenyi relates the story of his birth:
It was told that Hyrieus, or Oinopion, was visited by three gods. ... These three gods allowed their semen to flow into the hide of a sacrificed bull, and commanded their host to bury the leathern sack that had been filled in this manner. From it, after ten months, arose Orion, an Earth-born giant.33
Instead of semen, it may have been urine, but in either case the expulsion of both is denoted by the verb used, ourein, which according to myth, gives rise to the name "Orion." The name Hyrieus for the step-father of Orion, is akin to the word hyron, "beehive."34 The significance of those names and the myth itself lies in the manufacture of mead, the intoxicant known from prehistoric times before the advent of wine. Because fermentation creates gasses, it is necessary during this phase to use a container that can accommodate the expansion resulting from their release. It is apparent that the early containers were leather bladders which can easily expand and which can be uncorked to allow for the release of gas. The appropriate season for the collection of honey and the making of mead is about the time that Orion disappears from the sky. So the urine is the golden honey-water, the leather hide is the bladder, and the ten months in the earth is the period of fermentation in cellars. When wine came to the fore to eclipse mead, the old Hyrieus was superseded by names based upon oinos, "wine," giving us variants in which Oinopion or Oineus replace Hyrieus as the father.
In a continuation of this story,35 Orion gets drunk and rapes a woman named Merope ("Bee Eater"), who is either the wife or daughter of Oinopion. Here Orion himself is the intoxicating agent, and his ouron is put into the womb of the honey container. The result of this is that Oinopion blinds him, an obvious reference to the disappearance of the "lights" or stars of Orion,36* an event that marks the time of mead or wine making.
None of these important stories has a correspondent in the mythology of Redhorn. The reason for this is that the making of intoxicants was of minor importance to the Hočągara, and Orion was not used as a temporal marker for any corresponding process. The Greek Orion is a drunken wild man precisely because of his coincidental connection to the making of wine or mead. This character cannot be imputed to the Hočąk counterpart, which explains one of the most marked surface differences between the Greek Orion and Redhorn even though they are essentially the same stellar figures.
The Eyes of Orion Restored. Orion, now blinded, is told by a soothsayer that if he turns his face towards Helios himself, then his eyes would be restored. Following the sound of the smithy of Hephaistos, he comes to the island of Lemnos. There he finds the dwarf Kedalion, and places him upon his shoulders to guide him to the house of Helios. Kedalion led Orion to where Helios rises, and when the giant turned his face to the sun, his eyes were restored.37 Smiths are often associated with dwarves. Both are strongly connected to the earth, the smith because he extracts, smelts, and works the ores and their products dug from the ground; and the dwarf probably for the odd reason that his head is closer to the ground. This shows that the blinded Orion is associated with the subterranean world whose natural guides are smiths and dwarves. This is because his blindness is symbolic of the disappearance of his stars when they leave the sky in early summer and appear to go underground. These stars reappear when Orion rises with the sun. This is why he has to turn his eye-sockets towards Helios at dawn, inasmuch as it is in the east at dawn that Orion first reappears from his annual period underground.
On the face of it, there is no episode in the Redhorn corpus that looks at all like the story of Orion's blindness. However, this is due only to a difference in the symbolism employed. Hočąk myth also deals with the restoration of Orion by means of his solar-mediated resurrection. Redhorn is a single star of Orion (Alnilam), and as such he is more easily homologized to a head. So instead of losing his eyes, Redhorn loses his entire head. In "Chief of the Heroka" and in "The Red Man," he loses his head to his brothers-in-law for having killed his wife (their sister). His head is then buried under the fire. This is because he is visualized as not only having disappeared, but as being with the sun, here symbolized by the fire. His head is discovered by his own relatives, and under the guidance of spirits, he is reunited with his body. The absence of his body is the absence of locomotion, since he has been captured by the sun. His head is restored to his body by a sweat bath, in which the red hot stone placed in the water symbolizes the sun, and the water is the Ocean Sea from which it is about to rise; the steam is the bank of clouds found on the horizon. So the steam bath is an elaboration of the Greek counterpart of merely meeting the sun. In "The Red Man," the role of the earth-oriented guide (the Greek Kedalion) is played by Hare, inasmuch as the race of rabbits make their homes underground. The sweat bath reunites the head and torso of Redhorn, and he is able to walk out of the steam bath (which is his departure from proximity to the sun). So both the Greeks and Hočągara deal with the same set of events in the history of the relationship between Orion and the sun, but differ in both the symbols employed and the intensiveness of their allegorical descriptions.
Orion the Hunter. To the Greeks, Orion is first and foremost a hunter, an attribute that we do not directly associate with the names "Redhorn" and "Įčorúšika." Orion is famous for threatening to hunt everything on earth to extinction.38 He is variously the lover or competitor to the goddess of the hunt, Artemis.39 The Redhorn of the Cycle is not especially known for hunting. It is when we examine "The Chief of the Heroka" and "The Red Man" that we discover the hunter in the Hočąk Orion. In "The Chief of the Heroka" we are told that the character identified with Redhorn is the Chief of the Heroka spirits. These spirits have supernatural control over hunting by virtue of being spirits of the bow and arrow. They are particularly identified with the arrow, with which they never fail to hit their mark. As Herokaga, Redhorn has a similar identity with the arrow, as we see in his Cycle, when he changes himself into an arrow to beat all his competitors in a race. Although the Heroka bless people with successful hunting, their symbolism centers about the bow and arrow. The Greek Orion, in conformity with his wild nature, hunts with a club, a technique the Hočągara would consider regressive and culturally backward. It is in the rites devoted to the Heroka and kindred Little Children Spirits, that we find the emphasis on hunting powers and magic, whereas in myth, the emphasis is on the almost exclusive tool of hunting. So the stars of Orion among both the Greeks and the Hočągara are strongly identified with the hunt. This is a very widespread feature of Orion, and may have something to do with what we now call the "Belt Stars" of Orion, which tended to remind hunters of an arrow or spear.
The Pursuit of the Pleiades. The bright Pleiades star cluster precedes Orion across the sky, not too far ahead of that constellation. The name Pleiades comes from the name of their mother Pleione (-ades means, "daughter of"). Not surprisingly, Orion is said to pursue her or her daughters. To save them, Zeus turned them into doves, a pun on their name, as dove in Greek is peleiades.40 Considering the prominence of both star groups, why do we not have a story of this chase in the Hočąk corpus of myth?
A White-Tailed Deer Flagging
We do find what appears to be a parallel from the story of Redman, a form of Redhorn who is Chief of the Heroka, the spirits of the bow and arrow who govern the hunt (see above). In that story, Redman is a great hunter and is particularly fortunate with his deer traps. His wife is lazy and tries to cause his deer traps to fail so that she would not be so overburdened with processing the meat and hides. In her daily chore of gathering wood, she is cautioned not to go too far west, where he has set his deer traps. She promptly did just that. As a result he found her hanging upside down with her skirt exposing her hindquarters. This correlates quite well with the actions of the Pleiades. During the night the Pleiades rotate as they move from east to west, so that they come close to ending upside down. Furthermore, the "V" shaped Hyades, which fall between Orion and the Pleiades, make for a passable deer trap. Yet of the greatest interest is the fact that the Hočągara call the Pleiades Čašįč, "Deer Rump." This is because the white tail deer, true to its name, when it flees from a hunter or other predator, will raise its tail in a gesture known as "flagging," which exposes its bright white rump and underside of its tail.41 So the Hočągara see the bright white Pleiades cluster as a fleeing deer, which is running ahead of the hunter Redhorn-Redman, chief of the magical hunters, the Heroka. So the woman caught in the trap with her rump exposed by the lifting of her skirt-tail as if "flagging," is a deer counterpart par excellance; but more than that, she is pursued by her Orion, and ends up as a perfect image of the Hočąk Pleiades as a flagging deer with an exposed rump. A doe-woman is the opposite and complement to her hunter husband (friends are often called "my opposite" — see Bear Clan Origin Myth, Version 2a). In the end he shoots her with an arrow, either because she ruined the efficacy of his traps once too often (which is in the interest of a covert deer), or because he caught her with her paramour, a bear (the competing hunter of deer). So the Hočąk tradition does seem to have a counterpart to Orion's pursuit of the white Pleiades, but one cleverly clothed in a rich but very different symbolism that hides the identity of their allegorical deep structures.
Marriage of Orion. Homer tells us that Orion's wife was Ēōs, the Dawn. Calypso, speaking before Odysseus says,
Cruel are ye, O ye gods, and quick to envy above all others, seeing that ye begrudge goddesses that they should mate with men openly, if any takes a mortal as her dear bed-fellow. Thus, when rosy-fingered Dawn took to herself Orion, ye gods that live at ease begrudged her, till in Ortygia chaste Artemis of the golden throne assailed him with her gentle shafts and slew him.42
This is wholly appropriate for the stars of Orion, whose ascendancy from the earth in midsummer is the time of his glory, and the time when these stars become immersed in the red glow of dawn. Can we find an analogue to this in any Hočąk stories? The marriage of Orion and the Dawn suggests an interesting hypothesis. The word "horn" (he) in the name "Redhorn" (Hešučka), denotes hair, which when arranged in a scalp lock, resembles a literal horn. This "horn" is red. It is not the color of his conventionally white star (Alnilam), which the narrator confessed is really rather "yellowish" (zinisge), that gives Redhorn his red "hair."43 It is the red horizon of the east to which Orion ascends at his rising with the sun after his triumphant "harrowing of Hell." Just as the sunset on the opposite horizon makes Bluehorn (the Evening Star) into the "Red Star," so it is union with the dawn that turns red the hair of Redhorn. Įčorúšika's wife is a fat moon, which matches Redhorn's first wife, White Beaverskin Wrap, who is also likely a moon. However, in more than one account, Redhorn is said to have a second wife called "Pretty Woman." He met her in the astronomical game of lacrosse (kísik) in which the good spirits contested the Giants. By being on the winning side, he took her as a captive wife, although she showed no reluctance in marrying him. Her signal feature was that just like Redhorn, she had red hair. Since she ends up in physical union with Redhorn, it ought to be the case that the two astronomical phenomena corresponding to this couple also come into close proximity to one another. There is every reason to believe that the hair of Pretty Woman is red for the exact same reason as her husband's — it is the color imparted by the dawn. We have seen that Redhorn comes into intimate union with the dawn as he emerges in the east, rising with the sun. It seems probable not only that her hair is the dawn, but that she herself is the Hočąk Ēōs. Her being a lacrosse-playing Giant is quite consistent with this identity.
What might seem problematical about this identity is the fact that Giants are North Spirits, and the Dawn is a creature of the east. Nevertheless, when Orion emerges from below the horizon in midsummer, the sun is almost as far north as it will get, being only about a month past the summer solstice. Since the dawn is centered upon the sun, it follows that she too is farther north at the time of the heliacal rising of Orion (Redhorn-Įčorúšika). Although at this time she is a North Spirit, in the myth she is not entirely in tune with the Giants, becoming as she does, easily distracted by Redhorn, even to the point where she fails to uphold the Giant side in this life and death game of lacrosse. Her mother goes so far as to accuse her of treason. Indeed, this fits the Dawn well, as she deserts the North Spirits after the summer solstice for a sojourn into the south to cohabit with a star of Orion and to be cured of the cannibalism that makes her a Giant (Wągeručge, "Man-Eater") in the first place.
The Scorpion and the Death of Orion. In the well known Greek myth a resentful Artemis sends a scorpion to fatally sting Orion.44 In another variant, it is Gaia, Earth, who dispatches the scorpion to assassinate him.
Orion went away to Crete and spent his time hunting in company with Artemis and Leto. It seems that he threatened to kill every beast there was on earth; whereupon, in her anger, Earth sent up against him a scorpion of very great size by which he was stung and so perished. After this Zeus, at one prayer of Artemis and Leto, put him among the stars, because of his manliness, and the scorpion also as a memorial of him and of what had occurred.45
The meaning of this is simple enough: the scorpion is the constellation Scorpius which is located on the opposite side of the celestial sphere from Orion, so that when Scorpius rises, Orion sets, just as if the scorpion were pursuing Orion and causing him to find an early grave.
This story appears to be absent from the Hočąk corpus. We know that Orion sets in the south during its annual summer disappearance from the sky. The Hočągara do have a myth of Redhorn's death that should be a description of this. Redhorn meets his death during the life-gambling contests with the Giants, when his huge opponent succeeds in throwing him to the ground during a wrestling match. This would describe Orion's summer fall to the ground as his altitude in the sky declines with the northward tilt of the earth's axis as it approaches the summer solstice. What could throw Orion's stars down onto the southern horizon? We know that at this time of the year, new stars arise on the northern horizon for the first time. It is as if the night ceiling of the world has been wrestled up Atlas-like from the north. Consequently, it is of considerable interest to know in this context that the Giants are North Spirits. Unfortunately, we have no testimony as to their role in astronomy. However, their actions match those of asterisms that ascend in the north at the expense of the stars situated in the south. So if this correlation is an answer to our problem, then the wrestling victory of the Giants over Redhorn (the Hočąk version of Orion) is probably the counterpart of the constellation Scorpius in the fatal stinging of Orion, rising in the north to tip over the world, throwing the stars of Orion to the ground and subsequently burying them.
Just as Scorpius kills Orion by rising at the opposite side of the celestial sphere, so the reverse also happens. When Orion rises with the sun, Scorpius is setting. Now Orion "kills" Scorpius. We see this reverse fate enacted in the mythology of Redhorn. After the death of Redhorn, his two sons are born. In some mystical sense, one of them is really Redhorn reborn. He and his brother attempt to retrieve the head of Redhorn and his friends from the possession of the Giants (who are North Spirits). They succeed by killing the Giants who are guarding the heads.
In the present story, we encounter a woman whom the Waterspirits identify as "our woman" (hinųk hičapwira), which means that she is a Waterspirit herself. Given that the myth is an astronomy allegory at the very least, she must have some astronomical significance. Lankford shows that many cultures have a Great Serpent constellation where Scorpius is located.46 In some cases this constellation is identified explicitly with the various forms of the Great Serpent, who rules over the underworld. The "Great Serpents," also known in a variant form as "Underwater Panthers," are cognate to the Hočąk Waterspirits (Wakčexi). Therefore, if the Hočągara also have an asterism that is cognate to the Great Serpent constellations of other tribes, then it would have to be represented as a Waterspirit. That Waterspirits can also be stars, as we know from the case of Bluehorn, who is the Evening Star and who is said to rule over the stars-as-buffalo-spirits. The Waterspirit woman with whom the brothers of Įčorúšika plot, plays an astronomical role appropriate to Scorpius in its relation to Orion. She it is who causes Įčorúšika (Orion) to fall through the earth into the Lower World governed by her brothers the Bad Waterspirits. She does this through trickery, and perhaps bewitchment. First Įčorúšika comes in and sits at her feet. She is lying down. This represents the lying of the Scorpius (Great Serpent) constellation along the horizon. Orion sits at the other end of the Milky Way, at her "feet" so to speak. He is then told to "lie down in the back." Since we are dealing with fixed stars, the passage cannot be describing a separation taking place between these star groups, but is merely another allegorical statement of the same fixed relationship. When Orion begins to set, the belt stars lie horizontally, parallel with the ground. He is in the back of the lodge (the celestial sphere) on the opposite side from where she is lying. Also he is at the edge of the structure, which corresponds with the horizon. As he goes to take up his position, he falls through, which is to say that he sinks below the horizon and into the Lower World of the Waterspirits. This is a description of Scorpius "killing" Orion, or in this case, causing Orion to fall into the subterranean realm, which is almost as lethal.
Įčorúšika's return to the surface from the underworld is a clear allegory of Orion appearing at the horizon as its stars rise with the sun. When this happens, Orion starts pursuing Scorpius. How this chase takes place is instructive. First the female Waterspirit who plays the role of Scorpius descends beneath her lodge pole. Her lodge is situated at the base of the Milky Way, so the pole obviously is the dark cylinder running up the middle of the upright galaxy itself. As Scorpius sets, it descends below this "lodge pole." The story then re-images this process as a descent through "the core of solid trees." We have seen in another Redhorn myth that the Milky Way is homologized to a tree. The myth then compares the Milky Way to grass blades and a weed (roxek). As the Great Serpent asterism (essentially Scorpius) extends out a little beyond the Milky Way, she forms a structure resembling a tubercle in the weed analogy. However, sleeping inside the stem of a weed marks her as sinister, and in this same passage she is explicitly referred to as an "evil woman" (hinųk waroni), a circumlocution for a witch. Attributing witchcraft and other evil powers to Waterspirits is certainly true to their nature. Since Orion is at the other end of the Milky Way, he chases Scorpius through the same media. In the end his chase bears fruit, and he kills her, that is, Orion at his height drives Scorpius out of the sky and into the subterranean world. Compared to the Hočąk treatment of the subject, the Greek myth of the scorpion stinging Orion to death is crudely simple.
Links: The Redhorn Panel of Picture Cave. An American Star Map, Redhorn, Celestial Spirits, Foxes, Waterspirits, Thunderbirds, Nightspirits, Loons, Otters, Witches.
Stories: mentioning Redhorn: The Redhorn Cycle, Redhorn's Sons, The Mission of the Five Sons of Earthmaker, Redhorn's Father, Baldheaded Warclub Origin Myth, The Twins Join Redhorn's Warparty, The Medicine Rite Foundation Myth, Morning Star and His Friend, The Spirit of Gambling, The Green Man, The Hočągara Contest the Giants, cp. The Cosmic Ages of the Hočągara, Heroka, Redman; about stars and other celestial bodies: The Dipper, The Seven Maidens, Morning Star and His Friend, Little Human Head, Turtle and the Witches, Sky Man, Wojijé, The Raccoon Coat, Sun and the Big Eater, The Big Eater, The Star Husband, Grandfather's Two Families, Bluehorn's Nephews, The Twins Retrieve Red Star's Head, The Meteor Spirit and the Origin of Wampum, The Children of the Sun, Heną́ga and Star Girl, The Origins of the Milky Way, The Fall of the Stars; in which Waterspirits occur as characters: Waterspirit Clan Origin Myth, Traveler and the Thunderbird War, The Green Waterspirit of Wisconsin Dells, The Lost Child, River Child and the Waterspirit of Devil's Lake, A Waterspirit Blesses Mąnį́xete’ų́ga, Bluehorn's Nephews, Holy One and His Brother, The Seer, The Nannyberry Picker, The Creation of the World (vv. 1, 4), Šųgepaga, The Sioux Warparty and the Waterspirit of Green Lake, The Waterspirit of Lake Koshkonong, The Waterspirit of Rock River, The Boulders of Devil's Lake, Devil's Lake — How it Got its Name, Old Man and Wears White Feather, The Waterspirit of Sugar Loaf Mounds, Lakes of the Wazija Origin Myth, Waterspirits Keep the Corn Fields Wet, The Waterspirit Guardian of the Intaglio Mound, The Diving Contest, The Lost Blanket, Redhorn's Sons, The Phantom Woman, Great Walker's Warpath, White Thunder's Warpath, The Descent of the Drum, The Shell Anklets Origin Myth, The Daughter-in-Law's Jealousy, Snowshoe Strings, The Thunderbird, Hare Retrieves a Stolen Scalp (v. 2), The Two Children, The Twins Join Redhorn's Warparty, Earthmaker Sends Rušewe to the Twins, Paint Medicine Origin Myth, Waruǧápara, Ocean Duck, The Twin Sisters, Trickster Concludes His Mission, The King Bird, The Medicine Rite Foundation Myth, Great Walker's Medicine (v. 2), Heną́ga and Star Girl, Peace of Mind Regained, How the Thunders Met the Nights, The Spiritual Descent of John Rave's Grandmother, The Boy who was Captured by the Bad Thunderbirds, The Shaggy Man, The Woman who Married a Snake (?), Hare Secures the Creation Lodge, Ghost Dance Origin Myth I, The Sacred Lake, Lost Lake; mentioning foxes: Trickster Takes Little Fox for a Ride, Little Fox and the Ghost, Redhorn's Father, Trickster's Anus Guards the Ducks, The Scenting Contest, Trickster Gets Pregnant, Hare Recruits Game Animals for Humans (v. 3), Little Fox Goes on the Warpath, Holy One and His Brother; featuring Otter as a character: Otter Comes to the Medicine Rite, Baldheaded Warclub Origin Myth, Spear Shaft and Lacrosse, Turtle's Warparty, The Origins of the Milky Way, Redhorn's Sons, Redhorn Contests the Giants, The Arrows of the Medicine Rite Men (v. 2), Kunu's Warpath, Morning Star and His Friend; having otters as characters: Otter Comes to the Medicine Rite, The Fleetfooted Man, The Dipper, The Two Children, Baldheaded Warclub Origin Myth, Spear Shaft and Lacrosse, Turtle's Warparty, The Origins of the Milky Way, Redhorn's Sons, Redhorn Contests the Giants, Kunu's Warpath, The Woman who Loved Her Half Brother, The Chief of the Heroka, The Animal Spirit Aids of the Medicine Rite, The Arrows of the Medicine Rite Men (v. 2), Wojijé, Holy Song II, Morning Star and His Friend; mentioning witches or warlocks: The Witch Men's Desert, The Thunder Charm, The Wild Rose, The Seer, Turtle and the Witches, Great Walker and the Ojibwe Witches, The Claw Shooter, Mijistéga’s Powwow Magic and How He Won the Trader's Store, Migistéga’s Magic, Mijistéga and the Sauks, Migistéga's Death, The Mesquaki Magician, The Tap the Head Medicine, Keramaniš’aka's Blessing, Battle of the Night Blessed Men and the Medicine Rite Men, The Magical Powers of Lincoln's Grandfather, The Hills of La Crosse, The Shawnee Prophet — What He Told the Hočągara (v. 2), Thunder Cloud Marries Again, Paint Medicine Origin Myth, The Woman's Scalp Medicine Bundle, Potato Magic, Young Rogue's Magic; featuring loons as characters: The Raccoon Coat, Great Walker's Medicine, Old Man and Wears White Feather, Baldheaded Warclub Origin Myth; about Bird Spirits: Crane and His Brothers, The King Bird, Bird Origin Myth, Wears White Feather on His Head, Old Man and Wears White Feather, The Boy who was Captured by the Bad Thunderbirds, The Thunderbird, The Boy Who Became a Robin, Partridge's Older Brother, The Woman who Loved Her Half-Brother, The Foolish Hunter, Ocean Duck, Earthmaker Sends Rušewe to the Twins, The Quail Hunter, Baldheaded Warclub Origin Myth, The Hočąk Arrival Myth, Trickster Gets Pregnant, Trickster and the Geese, Holy One and His Brother (blackbirds, woodpeckers, hawks), Porcupine and His Brothers (Ocean Sucker), Turtle's Warparty (Thunderbirds, eagles, kaǧi, pelicans, sparrows), Kaǧiga and Lone Man (kaǧi), The Old Man and the Giants (kaǧi, bluebirds), The Bungling Host (snipe, woodpecker), The Red Feather, Trickster, the Wolf, the Turtle, and the Meadow Lark, Waruǧápara, The Race for the Chief's Daughter, Black and White Moons, The Markings on the Moon, The Creation Council, Eats the Stinking Part of the Deer Ankle, Earthmaker Blesses Wagíšega (Wešgíšega), The Man Who Would Dream of Mą’ųna (chicken hawk), Hare Acquires His Arrows, Hočąk Clans Origin Myth, Hawk Clan Origin Myth, The Hočąk Migration Myth, Blue Jay, The Baldness of the Buzzard, The Abduction and Rescue of Trickster (turkey buzzard), The Shaggy Man (blackbirds), The Medicine Rite Foundation Myth (blackbirds), Spear Shaft and Lacrosse, Great Walker's Medicine (loon), Roaster (woodsplitter), The Spirit of Gambling, The Big Stone (a partridge), Trickster's Anus Guards the Ducks, The Journey to Spiritland (v. 4) — see also Thunderbirds, and the sources cited there; in which dancing plays a role: Ghost Dance Origin Myth I, Ghost Dance Origin Myth II, Buffalo Dance Origin Myth, Mijistéga and the Sauks, Mijistéga’s Powwow Magic and How He Won the Trader's Store, Little Priest's Game, How Little Priest went out as a Soldier, Migistéga’s Magic, The Four Slumbers Origin Myth, Trickster and the Dancers, Wolves and Humans, The Shell Anklets Origin Myth, Bluehorn Rescues His Sister, The Blessing of Kerexųsaka, Pete Dupeé and the Ghosts; mentioning drums: The Descent of the Drum, The Blessings of the Buffalo Spirits, The Buffalo's Walk, The Spirit of Maple Bluff, Tobacco Origin Myth (v. 5), Young Man Gambles Often, Trickster and the Dancers, Redhorn's Father, Ghost Dance Origin Myth II, The Elk's Skull, Ghosts, The Four Slumbers Origin Myth, Great Walker's Medicine, Redhorn Contests the Giants, Buffalo Dance Origin Myth, Soft Shelled Turtle Gets Married, The Medicine Rite Foundation Myth, The Journey to Spiritland (v. 1b), Wolf Clan Origin Myth, Trickster's Anus Guards the Ducks, Trickster and the Geese, Turtle's Warparty, Snowshoe Strings, Ocean Duck, A Waterspirit Blesses Mąnį́xete’ų́ga, Hog's Adventures, Pete Dupeé and the Ghosts.
Themes: a large group of brothers (usually ten) live alone together: Sun and the Big Eater, The Big Eater, The Quail Hunter, Bladder and His Brothers, Wojijé, The Race for the Chief's Daughter, The Spotted Grizzly Man; red as a symbolic color: The Journey to Spiritland (hill, willows, reeds, smoke, stones, haze), The Gottschall Head (mouth), The Chief of the Heroka (clouds, side of Forked Man), The Red Man (face, sky, body, hill), Spear Shaft and Lacrosse (neck, nose, painted stone), Redhorn's Father (leggings, stone sphere, hair), The Sons of Redhorn Find Their Father (hair, body paint, arrows), Wears White Feather on His Head (man), The Birth of the Twins (turkey bladder headdresses), The Two Boys (elk bladder headdresses), Trickster and the Mothers (sky), Rich Man, Boy, and Horse (sky), The Blessings of the Buffalo Spirits (Buffalo Spirit), Bluehorn Rescues His Sister (buffalo head), Wazųka (buffalo head headdress), The Baldheaded Warclub Origin Myth (horn), The Brown Squirrel (protruding horn), Bear Clan Origin Myth (funerary paint), Hawk Clan Origin Myth (funerary paint), Deer Clan Origin Myth (funerary paint), Thunderbird Clan Origin Myth (stick at grave), Pigeon Clan Origins (Thunderbird lightning), Trickster's Anus Guards the Ducks (eyes), Hare Retrieves a Stolen Scalp (scalp, woman's hair), The Race for the Chief's Daughter (hair), The Daughter-in-Law's Jealousy (hair), Redhorn Contests the Giants (hair), Redhorn's Sons (hair), The Woman's Scalp Medicine Bundle (hair), A Wife for Knowledge (hair), Eats the Stinking Part of the Deer Ankle (hair), The Hočągara Contest the Giants (hair of Giantess), A Man and His Three Dogs (wolf hair), The Red Feather (plumage), The Man who was Blessed by the Sun (body of Sun), The Man Whose Wife was Captured (v. 2) (body of the Warrior Clan Chief), Red Bear, Eagle Clan Origin Myth (eagle), The Shell Anklets Origin Myth (Waterspirit armpits), The Twins Join Redhorn's Warparty (Waterspirits), The Roaster (body paint), The Man who Defied Disease Giver (red spot on forehead), The Wild Rose (rose), The Medicine Rite Foundation Myth (warclub), Hare Kills Flint (flint), The Twins Retrieve Red Star's Head (edges of flint knives), The Nannyberry Picker (leggings), The Seduction of Redhorn's Son (cloth), Yųgiwi (blanket); a spirit has faces on each earlobe: Redhorn Contests the Giants, The Sons of Redhorn Find Their Father, The Dipper (hummingbirds), Redhorn's Father, Morning Star and His Friend, The Hočągara Contest the Giants; a spirit has four arms: The Forked Man; the eldest and youngest brothers dominate: Bladder and His Brothers; the youngest offspring is superior: The Mission of the Five Sons of Earthmaker, Young Man Gambles Often, The Medicine Rite Foundation Myth, Twins Cycle, The Two Boys, Bluehorn's Nephews, The Children of the Sun, The Creation of the World (v. 12), The Race for the Chief's Daughter, The Raccoon Coat, Wojijé, How the Thunders Met the Nights, Eats the Stinking Part of the Deer Ankle, Sun and the Big Eater, Buffalo Clan Origin Myth, Bear Clan Origin Myth (vv. 4, 7), Snake Clan Origins, South Enters the Medicine Lodge, Snake Clan Origins, Thunderbird Clan Origin Myth; the oldest brother anounces that he is so great a spirit that his brothers have nothing to fear: Holy One and His Brother, Turtle's Warparty, Bladder and His Brothers; a fruitless visit to the upper and lower worlds: The Man who went to the Upper and Lower Worlds, The Lost Blanket, Wears White Feather on His Head; a schism develops between one clique of brothers and the oldest and youngest pair: Crane and His Brothers; in human form, Waterspirit women are extraordinarily beautiful: The Daughter-in-Law's Jealousy, The Phantom Woman, The Nannyberry Picker, Hare Retrieves a Stolen Scalp (v. 2); a group of brothers plots with a Waterspirit against the youngest (who is the most favored): The Shaggy Man; a group of young men plot to trick one of their number into falling victim to a Waterspirit: Waruǧápara, The Shaggy Man; a woman not only rejects a suitor, but kicks him: The Seduction of Redhorn's Son; an evil woman pretending to help a man is actually using a trick to kill him: The Thunder Charm; a woman causes a hero to fall down a great crevasse: Ocean Duck; someone is abducted and led off into captivity: The Captive Boys, A Man's Revenge, Bluehorn's Nephews, The Lost Child, Wears White Feather on His Head, Bird Clan Origin Myth, The Man Whose Wife was Captured, Bladder and His Brothers, The Boy who was Captured by the Bad Thunderbirds, Bluehorn Rescues His Sister, The Boy who was Blessed by a Mountain Lion, The Green Man, Brave Man, The Chief of the Heroka, Šųgepaga, Hare Gets Swallowed, Hare Acquires His Arrows, The Raccoon Coat, Wojijé, Wolves and Humans, The Woman Who Became an Ant, Thunderbird and White Horse, Heną́ga and Star Girl, Brass and Red Bear Boy, Traveler and the Thunderbird War (v. 5), The Boy who Flew, Testing the Slave; someone is captured by Waterspirits: Įčorúšika and His Brothers, Holy One and His Brother, Traveler and the Thunderbird War (v. 5), Redhorn's Sons, Heną́ga and Star Girl, The King Bird; Waterspirits lay a man on his back and bind him down: The Thunderbird; a human lives with Waterspirits: The Nannyberry Picker, The King Bird, The Daughter-in-Law's Jealousy, Old Man and Wears White Feather, The Phantom Woman; good spirits try to intercede with bad spirit allies to save the life of a captured human: The Boy who was Captured by the Bad Thunderbirds; a prisoner escapes by killing (some of) his captor(s): Wears White Feather on His Head, Hare Acquires His Arrows, Thunderbird and White Horse, The Boy who Flew, Hare Gets Swallowed, The Raccoon Coat, Wojijé, The Captive Boys; (removing a tent pole and) entering another world through a hole in the ground: The Seduction of Redhorn's Son, How the Thunders Met the Nights, Redhorn's Sons, Iron Staff and His Companions; hiding under a leaf: The Chief of the Heroka; people being chased miniaturize themselves and attempt to escape by passing through to the other side of a leaf: The Chief of the Heroka, Bladder and His Brothers, people chase one another underground: The Seduction of Redhorn's Son, Eats the Stinking Part of the Deer Ankle, Redhorn's Sons, Iron Staff and His Companions; setting water ablaze by striking it with a weapon: Baldheaded Warclub Origin Myth, Redhorn's Sons; a powerful spirit burns down the abode of a Waterspirit: The Lost Blanket, The Two Children; good people (and spirits) completely annihilate a race of bad spirits except for two, whom they allow to live (so that they do not undo the work of the Creator): Grandfather's Two Families, Sun and the Big Eater, How the Thunders Met the Nights, Bluehorn Rescues His Sister, Redhorn's Father, Morning Star and His Friend, Eats the Stinking Part of the Deer Ankle; someone is, or becomes, a star: The Seven Maidens, The Dipper, Grandfather's Two Families, Morning Star and His Friend, Heną́ga and Star Girl, Turtle and the Witches, The Star Husband; some of a group of brothers are Stellar Spirits and others are animals: The Big Eater, Sun and the Big Eater, The Star Husband, Grandfather's Two Families; a spirit punishes a fox and its kind by condemning them to lead an inferior life: Redhorn's Father.
Now in a separate file.