Bluehorn Rescues His Sister

narrated by Jim Pine

Jim Pine

Hocąk-English Interlinear Text

(262) There was a village and there a warrior lived in a lodge and whenever he took a liking to a woman he seized her and married her, it is said. And a virgin (said,) "Yet whenever that one asked me, I would not do it." She was a good looking virgin woman. But that warrior was not handsome. Therefore, there was no woman who would do it. Then finally, he would marry her. And so that woman ran away. (263) "Wherever I am going to die, that's the way it is to be they say." And so she went away. Now she did nothing but cry. Once it became night, she would cry all night. Finally, as she was doing this, she saw a hill. She said, "There on the hill opposite, if I were to die there, it would be good." And so she tried to get there, but when she got there, the cliffs were as if they had been filed. In the center, a door started to open. Then a very beautiful woman suddenly appeared. "Waną, my dear younger sister," she said and (264) she told her to sit down there. She asked her to eat from a little kettle there by the fire. She dished out from a little kettle there and asked her to eat. And then she ate. And very often here again she put on things to boil. When she was through eating, then a man returned. "Hohó, my dear younger sister, did you give food to my younger sister?" "Yes," she said. "She has eaten," she said.

And all day long he worked on arrows, the kind he worked on being mą́p'a'ų, (265) and every morning he would have finished an arrow quiver full, and so every morning he would fast and he would go someplace. And so all day long he would stay in the wilderness. And a quiver full he would finish. Thus he said he would go again. And to this one had come a woman. Now she was a good looking woman and she became his younger sister. "Did she eat?" he asked, and she had said, "Yes." And all night long he worked on arrows. At daybreak he had finished a quiver full (266) and again he was to go away.

"Karoho, hąhoo my dear younger sister! I'm going to say something to you — your older sister, who is lying down, is not human. And if she then says something to you, do not respond. If she says anything, do not respond." "Since my older brother has forbidden it, I will not do it." And then as soon as he did thus, here they came. They were doing lacrosse. The woman that had been living there formerly is the one he meant. (267) And she said to her, the woman who had come from someplace, "And our older brother has forbidden it, yet you are seeing them." "It happened that I saw them, but all day long they played lacrosse outside the door. When the sun was going down, they opened the flap and went home." And then the woman stopped, and their older brother returned. When he came in, one of his sisters was sitting down. "Hohó my dear sisters, it is good. (268) And so again, all morning long, he made arrows, and in the morning when he had made his arrows, he left, and he went out the door. "Hąhó my dear younger sister, again so these will come. If your older sister asks you to look at them, do not do it. I am saying this in vain. She will coax you." And then he left. As the sun rose they came playing lacrosse outside the door and so all day long she asked her. "Older brother forbade it. (269) Yes, you're seeing them." "It happens that I shall see them." "You're telling about them, and I understand. Well, my dear little sister," here the woman said it, it is said. She sang a song in this way,

He who wears a white buffalo head, Come after me!
He who wears a white buffalo head, Come after me!
I shall give you ribs, I shall give you ribs!

she sang, it is said. And then as she said it, they went home. As soon as they started home, their older brother returned. When he went in, this one said to both of them, "Hohó my dear younger sisters, (270) it is good that only these finished," he said. Again, all morning long, he himself made war arrows by hand. And again he started to leave. Karohora, they say he was fasting. So again after he got ready to go, the faster again was about to start off. As he was about to depart again, he said once more, "My dear younger sister, they will come again. Again, under no conditions are you to allow her to coax you." Again now, very soon, once more so they came. They were doing lacrosse. (271) And so when they came the woman again sang, and she sang this song to them:

He who wears a white buffalo head, Come after me!
He who wears a white buffalo head, Come after me!
I shall give you ribs, I shall give you ribs!


"Hahu," he said. She said that one wore a white buffalo head on his own head, and another wore a red buffalo head on his head. It was they of whom she had been singing. Again they did lacrosse. For four days they did it before the door, running back and forth in the lacrosse game. "Hąhao my dear younger sister, it is good. (272) For four days they did lacrosse and, my dear younger sister, today is the last time they will do lacrosse, and hąhao my dear younger sister, try hard to overcome it. You will do well for yourself to accomplish it," he said, and he started to leave.

Ho, again they had come playing lacrosse, and again right away the woman did her song. And she sang this in another language. Their village was not built near any other. (273) Thus she did. (S)he did not understand. They came again. They did lacrosse outside her door. "And my dear younger sister, if you were to peep out somewhere, nothing would happen," she said, and so she peeped as she had been persuaded by her. These guys, sure enough, were doing things in a funny way, and so they laughed at them. She said to her, "My dear younger sister, as I am tired, let us stand outside. Let's go there outside and we will stand outside." (274) There they stood outside and she said, "My dear younger sister, I am tired, so let's sit on top of a big rock." There they went and sat. And again that woman sang. Now again, she sang this:

He who wears a white buffalo head, Come after me!
He who wears a white buffalo head, Come after me!
I shall give you ribs, I shall give you ribs!

Then, "Hąhaó, it is said that she is saying something," he said. And once again one of them started up a song. "Hahú, there she is." They raced for the door. Then she ran in and slammed it shut. (275) And there they captured that woman. Then they took her home. He returned. "Hohó my dear younger sister, you have often destroyed for me the good looking women. You have done me a great deal of harm again," and then he knocked her senseless and threw her outside. And thus he did and he worked on his arrows all night by hand through his tears.

And the next morning, he went to trail his younger sister. (276) And as he went, he placed a quiver there. Now again beyond that point as he continued he nearly made it reach that buffalo village there. Then he did it. As fluffy feathers he went upward. And he came through the roof of the lodge in which they were dancing. And he landed on a little crevice on the kettle hanger. And they were dancing. Now the lodge was surrounded by broken backed ones. (277) And finally his younger sister came by below him. Now she was grunting (every time they jumped). Then, ho, they knew of him. "Hąhao," they said, "it suddenly smells like human," they said. They said, "Go call He who Looks at the Sky (Mąxira-horuxucka) and he will see." And so they went after him. Finally, yet soon afterwards, they came back with him. And they offered him tobacco, and then he looked at the sky. "I don't know of anything." Hąhao, they started up. (278) They had delayed the dancing for a long time. Now they started it up. Now the dancing began anew. Then she came back there again. And so again he cried. So again they knew. "Hąhao, it's Bluehorn again, the odor is present," they said. Go call Earth Looker (Moruxúcka) again so that he can look at the earth. "There's nothing. Hąhao, let's start up. You have delayed the dance. Therefore, now let's begin. (279) How could Bluehorn come? By now somewhere he must have cried himself to death." So now they started up the dance. They danced into the longhouse. "Are you hearing it?" So now once more they started up. When now she came back again, once more he cried. He saw his younger sister. Therefore, the tears would flow. They were clever, therefore they knew of it, and again they went to call one. They said to go and call another one in addition, Sky Looker (Mąxióroxúcka). (280) Again they presented a tobacco pouch. Then He who Looks at the Sky (Mąxira-horuxucka) said, "I don't know of anything. Hąhao, you have delayed the dance. Right now it is to start up." And so again they started it up. Now again they went back to the dance. Ho, again they now came. He saw his younger sister. Again he cried. Thus, when they knew of him again, therefore they went and called him once more. They came back with Earth Looker (Moruǧucka). Tobacco was offered to Earth [Looker], but he did not know anything of him. (281) "Hąhao, we are starting up. We have delayed the dance. How could Bluehorn come here? Somewhere by now he has cried himself to death." And now they caused it to start. The dance started up. The dance came through the longhouse again for the fourth time, and then he did it.

He snatched up his younger sister. And then he put his younger sister in his arrow quiver. (282) "Hen hen! Bluehorn has taken her away with him," they said. "Hen hen! As you have often said, it's Bluehorn, rush upon him!" He ran on earth and he shot buffaloes. Now he took a great many buffaloes. So when they chased him and he shot arrows at them, he would cause to be killed about four buffaloes. He did this out of anger. And so now he destroyed the buffaloes. He got the buffaloes, it is said. They were afraid, so they said "Hen hen! You can't kill Bluehorn. (283) One must try to save one's life." He chased after them. He nearly ended the buffaloes. Therefore, a female and male he then threw in the west. "Now, I considered ending you. Again, I thought, 'How it could be?' and so you are not to be extirpated. You tried to abuse humans, but again I thought, 'How could I do it?' and so you are not to be ended. And if you do that in the future, it will be your fault. (284) Do not do that," he said. Therefore, they never tried again to abuse people.

Thus it is ended.1

Commentary. "not handsome" — excess is attributed to the sun, or at least the primordial sun, throughout the globe. See the Comparative Material to "Bluehorn's Nephews," where the Hindu Vivasvant (the Sun) gets trimmed on a lathe because his wife is "unsatisfied with her husband's form."2

"he would marry her" — eventually every moon comes into conjunction with the sun, a form of intimate contact here homologized to sexual intercourse.

"that woman ran away" — this myth has numerous similarities to "Bluehorn's Nephews" (see below). The latter deals with the conjunction of the sun and the moon. In this myth too, the virgin is meant to symbolize a moon. In "Bluehorn's Nephews" the bullying warrior is the Sun. The flight of the moon from the village of the sun (or the earth, as the case may be), describes the progress of the moon in its waxing phase when it leaves the embrace of the Sun and goes into opposition to him on the far side of the celestial vault. But in naive visual astronomy, conjunction is not only of the moon with the sun, but of the moon with the earth, as it appears to touch down at the rim of the earth and not to rise up for a couple of days.

"she did nothing but cry" — in world religion, the moon is strongly associated with water because of its own fluid-like waxing and waning. However, in Hocąk symbolism, sound stands for light. As this moon travels away from the sun, it becomes ever brighter until it is full. Allegorically, the constant crying represents the brightness of the full moon.

"she would cry all night" — sound for light: the full moon is up from sunset to sunrise (at least when the days are long enough).

"to die there" — death in astronomical symbolism stands for conjunction since the moon disappears beneath the earth and is not seen in the sky, as if it had been buried like a corpse in the ground. This shows that the hill in the distance is the place at which conjunction will be achieved. We encounter the two sisters of Bluehorn in the story "Bluehorn's Nephews" as well. In stories set at a later time in their lives, there is only one sister living with Bluehorn. She is Moon and the mother of the Twins by Sun. Therefore, the younger of the two sisters at least should be a moon. This is to some degree confirmed by her struggle to the hill as her energy wanes and she approaches death. This is like the moon when it is in its decline, and at the luna silens, it is as if it has gone underground, even though it is not strictly dead, since it rises again only a couple of days later.

"cliffs" — the edge of the world is hemmed in by cliffs that hold the Te Ją (the Ocean Sea) in place, just as in most Eurasian cosmographies. This is where the heavenly bodies rise in the east and where the moon falls into conjunction.


"a very beautiful woman" — this woman, the elder sister of Moon, doesn't seem to be the female version of Morning Star, as the corresponding figure is in "Bluehorn's Nephews." The moon goes into conjunction by swinging lower and lower into the morning sky of the east. So we know from this that the door that she enters and where she meets the beautiful sister is in the east. It is not clear, however, if the woman ever comes out of Bluehorn's underground lodge, the place of conjunction. Nevertheless, she does manage to meet the moon as if she were a star that could be seen in the east. However, it is fairly clear from what is said below that this is a star (not to exclude planets, of course) that can set even before the new moon. If she is meant to be a planet, she would likely be Jupiter for reasons discussed below. The inset shows Jupiter meeting the moon as it goes into conjunction on the eastern horizon.

"sit down" — this is allegorical symbolism for conjunction, since the moon "sits" on the earth and does not rise.

"there by the fire" — as a moon wanes, it approaches the rim of the earth where the sun rises. Bluehorn plays the role of the blue sky which also emerges at this same place. This place is by the "fire" (the sun), and it is there that the moon (in conjunction) is restored so that it regains its strength to reascend into the sky and grow fatter.

"to boil" — the edge of the world where the sun rises and the moon declines into conjunction, is where the Te Ją (Ocean Sea) is found. Thus the sun seems to dwell below this sea before it rises. Metaphorically, the "fire" is beneath the water, so that their union is thought of as boiling. For the use of this symbolism in other myths, see 1, 2.

"she has eaten" — when the moon arrives at the place of conjunction, which is the door to Bluehorn's lodge, she has been reduced to nothing but a literal sliver of her former self. In the old astronomy, where it was not understood why the moon fluctuated between obese and emaciated, it was a mystery from where she got her waxing light. The analogy offered is that of eating: when we eat more than usual, we put on fat. Somehow the moon is mysteriously "eating" light where the rising sun and sky come together during her conjunction.

"he worked on arrows" — Bluehorn is a Waterspirit. Waterspirits are the spiritual essence of water, so they are responsible for the governance of all forms of terrestrial waters. The word for arrow is , but this word also denotes springs. So Bluehorn is esoterically working on springs, which issue from the cavernous subterranean homes of the Waterspirit race. also means "time," and as the blue sky, Bluehorn has much to do with time and cycles and at the very least, marks the span of a day.

"mą́p'a'ų" — literally, "the sharpened or pointed arrow." This is a battle arrow made entirely of wood with a sharpened point.3

"an arrow quiver full" — a great deal of symbolism arising out of the homonyms of the Hocąk language coalesce here. A quiver is mą-wožú in Hocąk, where means "arrow" and wožú means "container," and as a verb, "to put, place." The word also means "earth," "spring (of water)," and "time." The quiver can be seen as another image of Bluehorn's palatial lodge, a lodge in the earth (), in front of which runs a spring (), and where he spends much of the day making arrows (). This underground vault is where he fashions and controls the elements of time (). Each sliver moon is an arrow in his quiver, which he takes at conjunction and puts in his lodge. It is he who makes them, and who in the end controls the sun (see "Bluehorn's Nephews"). Therefore, Bluehorn is at once a Waterspirit, a Buffalo spirit, the Evening Star, and vault of the sky, participating in the three worlds of water, earth, and sky. He is one of the eight Great Ones whom Earthmaker fashioned with his own hands.

"every morning he would fast and he would go someplace" — Bluehorn represents the blue sky. Before he goes off someplace, he has fasted. This means that before the blue sky leaves, it is dark. Fasters blacken their faces with charcoal, so the sky in the wee hours of the morning is black. Then he rises in the east and goes across the sky.

"to this one had come a woman" — the narrator is merely recapitulating the arrival of the younger sister from the point of view of Bluehorn. This is not a third woman.

"all night long" — while the god of the blue sky is below ground, he is doing the work of a Waterspirit by making springs, or in Hocąk, , a word that also means "arrows."

"who is lying down" and "one of his sisters was sitting down" — death, sitting, and lying down are all metaphors in the allegories about conjunction. The elder sister is a star (or planet), and since her younger sister (the moon) is also there, they are in conjunction together.

"says something" — given the symbolism of light by sound, her saying something should mean that the star that she represents has risen so that its light can now be seen in the sky.

"do not respond" — since the moon is in conjunction, this is an injunction for her to stay that way. The moon will remain in conjunction for 2-3 days. The timing of the solar conjunctions of Moon and her stellar sister would be, of course, independent of one another.

"he did thus" — this means that he did as he always did, and went off into the "wilderness."

"you are seeing them" — since this is daylight, the "buffaloes" (stars) are on earth.

"all day long" — since it is day, these "buffaloes" (stars) have set, so they are at the same place (earth) as the moon during her solar conjunction.

"when the sun was going down, they opened the flap and went home" — when the sun sets, the stars ("buffaloes") return to the sky ("go home"). To do this, they rise in the east, which is to say, they open the door-flap to the lodge of the blue sky, but do not go in. That they do this, shows the esoteric character of the action here. On the surface story, they can't actually be inside Bluehorn's lodge, since they are playing the astronomy game which requires a big field to enact and could hardly be played indoors. Yet, given the symbolism, they must open the eastern sky-door, the flap of Bluehorn's lodge, before they can leave, just as if they had been inside the lodge.

"white buffalo head" — from what is said on page 271, this should probably have been "red buffalo head."

"lacrosse" — this ball game (kísik) is replete with astronomical symbolism throughout North America.

"I shall give you ribs" — during this period, the moon is in its crescent phase and therefore looks like a rib. That the older sister is going to give the lacrosse players ribs is appropriate as an elliptic way of saying that she is going to give them her lunar sister. Normally, when ribs are offered, they are given as a highly desirable cut of meat (bear ribs were very popular, for instance). This ties in well with what is said about evil spirits eating the moon when it wanes. However, they are doomed to fail, since she is to be rescued by her brother Bluehorn.

"a white buffalo head on his own head, and another wore a red buffalo head" — the buffalo as we see from other Bluehorn myths as well, are stars in this context. Bluehorn, it is said, is chief of the Buffalo Spirits even though he is a Waterspirit himself. However, those whom the sister summons are humanoids (wąkra) who are merely wearing buffalo heads over their own. Their choice of head gear singles them out as having a strong identity with buffaloes, while at the same time not being a literal buffalo. This would mean that they are quasi-stars. Comets and shooting stars might fit this description, but they are not red nor is their chief spirit, Wojijega, in any way homologized to a buffalo — in fact he is strongly identified with the raccoon. The obvious remaining candidates for quasi-stars are the planets. There are five highly unusual "stars" that the Western world calls "planets," a term in origin that means "wanderer." These are Evening Star (Bluehorn), Morning Star, the matutine and vespertine Mercuries (the Twins), Jupiter, Saturn, and Mars. The younger sister is promised to two of the quasi-buffaloes in particular, one has a red head, the other a white one. Neither of the buffalo head wearers can be the Morning Star because the elder sister's star is in the west where the moon emerges from conjunction, and this is where the lunar sister is captured by the "buffaloes." Among those remaining, it is quite easy to pick the planet that has the red head. That would be Mars. Of the remaining candidates for the white head, we have Jupiter and Saturn. It seems likely for reasons given below, that the elder sister herself is Jupiter, so by exclusion, the white head belongs to Saturn. These two are singled out as though they were the leaders of those out to capture the lunar sister. They are leaders in the sense that they are not subject to the regimen of the countless other stars who follow the same circuit through the sky night after night. This comports with the statement below that they played lacrosse in a "funny" way.

"before the door" — four is the number of totality, so the symbolism of "four days" is "the totality of time" during which the game takes place, and allegorically, the period of time that the moon will take to "see" them and leave conjunction. There seem to be doors on both the eastern and western ends of the lodge. They are situated where the sun rises and where it sets, as these are the places where Bluehorn as the day sky also enters and leaves.

"she sang this in another language" — if this is sound for light, it would mean that although the light could be seen, its significance could not be grasped by the lunar sister. Its significance is that their light (words) is a steady planetary light, unlike that of the other stars. Jupiter speaks the same "language."

"their village was not built near any other" — this would seem to mean only that the buffalo village, the starry sky of night, is not anywhere near a human village, a village on earth.

"peep out" — this represents the minimal departure from the earth-lodge of Bluehorn. This is the gradual disjunction of the moon from the sun and earth.

"nothing would happen" — this is a lie. The elder sister is trying to coax her outside, that is, into the night sky.

"in a funny way" — the other stars "play" according to a set rule, but the planets (the red and white buffalo heads) play in an erratic way that seems to obey no set of rules. This can be seen in their retrograde motion, and their wandering through different groups of stars in a pattern difficult to grasp.

"they stood outside" — this is the third day since the moon went into conjunction, so she will now appear "outside" in the western night sky at dusk.


"there they went and sat" — the moon and her stellar sister (Jupiter ?) are now both outside the underground lodge of conjunction, and are therefore in the sky. They are situated in an elevated position, but one that is barely above the horizon. As long as it is daylight, they will not be seen, but once the sun sets they will be exposed to the buffaloes (stars). There are places where the moon and Jupiter would appear to be sitting on the edge of a "rock" (hill or mountain), when they are in the configuration shown in the inset.

"they raced for the door" — the star of the elder sister (probably Jupiter), once the sun sets and daylight is over, begins to set, leaving the moon behind, since the latter is setting from a greater height (as the younger sister is presumably higher up on the rock), as shown in the inset.

"slammed it shut" — the moon is no longer setting with the sun, and is left outside, that is, in the night sky, and out of solar conjunction. As can be seen in the inset, Jupiter is in a position to play this role. The moon each night appears at sunset higher in the sky, whereas Jupiter sinks closer and closer to the horizon, until at sunset it is not seen at all.

"they captured that woman" — since the moon is outside the earth-lodge of Bluehorn, and the door is shut (the sun has set), she is now in the night sky where the stars ("buffaloes") surround ("capture") her.

"often destroyed" — that the eviction of the moon is a cyclical process, Bluehorn makes clear by referring to all the others to whom she had done this same thing.

"threw her outside" — now she is sprawled out on the ground, having been "knocked senseless" (karaísak). This describes the solar conjunction of this star in terms of its landing on earth, having (as we saw above) gradually fallen lower and lower in the western sky. It eventually is "hit" with the sun, which knocks it unconscious. The command of the sun belongs tot he blue sky (Bluehorn), so he may be described as making her collide with it and sprawling on the ground. Being unconscious is often thought of as being in a state where one's soul has temporarily left the body. Since light is also identified with life, the temporary loss of consciousness is also a temporary loss of light. This is what happens in conjunction or the annual setting of a star. However, in this story, stars are buffaloes, and the star in question shows affinity to the two buffalo-headed quasi-stars on the one hand, and Bluehorn, the Evening Star, on the other, not to mention the moon. Jupiter is the best candidate, being clearly a metaphorical sibling to both the moon and to Evening Star (Bluehorn). She is beautiful, and shines with a bright, unflickering light, symbolically rendered as a strong voice, one with which she calls those who have affinity to her, the wearers of the white and red buffalo heads (ex hypothesi, Saturn and Mars). The conjunction of Jupiter on average lasts only 38 days, so when this moon returns to Bluehorn's lodge at conjunction, Jupiter will still be "sprawled out on the ground," only this time in the east (as a morning star).

"tears" — this is a complementary symbol to the arrow. The making of arrows () as we have seen, is a description of making springs () deep within the earth. The tears shed by the Waterspirit Bluehorn while residing in his subterranean lodge are just the same thing.

"trail" — now that the moon is in the night sky, the blue sky literally trails far behind her after sunrise. However, the moon stays longer and longer in the sky, until near conjunction again, she is overtaken by the blue sky.

"he placed a quiver there" — the "arrow" he is to put in there is the sliver of the moon itself, his younger sister, as we see below. So his quiver must be near the eastern horizon, since that is the place where the moon sinks into conjunction with the sun and goes into the underground lodge of Bluehorn, the place where conjunction takes place.

"buffalo village" — here it is revealed that the youngest sister has been captured by the buffaloes. The buffaloes have a special identity with the earth, so it is appropriate that they should try to hold her. How is it, then, that the buffalo can in any way be identified with stars? The buffalo, besides being symbolic of the land, is also an animal known for its wide ranging travels across the landscape. All the stars undertake an immense journey when they rise in the east and set in the west. In their setting, they seem to touch down upon the ground, then mysteriously traverse the earth en masse like a giant herd of buffalo until by next morning, they appear once again on the opposite side of Island Earth to rise into the sky. The mysterious mass migration of stars from one side of the land to the other makes them, whatever else they may be, into Buffalo Spirits. The kindred Osage also have a similar belief concerning the Thóxe, the Buffalo Bulls. As La Flesche remarks, "The Thóxe are sky people."4

"as fluffy feathers he went upwards" — this may be designed to recall the red feathers that are holy offerings prominent in sacrifices to Buffalo Spirits. Feathers belong to beings who fly, and in this case to one who is red. This matches perfectly the Evening Star, known as the Red Star, as it floats up into the night sky, then declines back towards the horizon as it approaches conjunction. Red Star is the other identity of Bluehorn.

"dancing" — most American Indian dances were done in a circular path, which is just what the stars ("buffaloes") do in relation to the fixed pole star.


"he landed on a little crevice on the kettle hanger" — this is once again an instance of the boiling motif (see above). The fire is the sun, the kettle is the earth with the rim of the kettle being the steep cliffs that hold in the Ocean Sea, here represented by the boiling water of the kettle. The steam that rises up is a counterpart to the clouds at the horizon. The boiling kettle is meant for his lunar sister, which is a reduplication of the conjunction motif. Now Bluehorn is small and only a little above the waters of the cauldron itself, perhaps obscured by steam (clouds). Bluehorn is coming to the rescue not in his form as the blue sky, but as a very small being, one who finds himself among the "buffaloes" (the stars). He is therefore in the form of Evening Star as it is about to decline into conjunction near the sun and the horizon [inset]. The handle has a convex curve which reflects the curvature of the horizon (which could be seen from a lake view like that near Red Banks on Lake Michigan). As he rests very near the horizon, he seems to be neither in the sky nor on the ground, but in a seam in between them. This is why he lands on a small crevice (hošgop). The word seems to mean "interstice," since "at a hošgop," hošgobeja, means "between" (Marino). He is in the powerful in-between world, the interstitial realm of neither-nor and both-and, where contradiction implies every possibility. Inasmuch as he nears conjunction, the sun is also setting near the horizon and the blue sky itself falls into the twilight zone where the position of the Red Star and the blue sky, the two great aspects of Bluehorn, coincide in a moment of power that is especially his own. For the kettle theme, see The Dipper.


"broken backed ones" — this is a reference to buffaloes, whose forelegs come together to form a hump so that the contour of the spine is like someone with a broken back. For the same symbolism, see 1, 2.

"grunting" — in the sound for light symbolism, this is a small noise which therefore corresponds to a small amount of light. As the moon comes out of conjunction it starts as a sliver. Every time the stars make a circuit, she gains a small addition of light.

"smells" — as we saw above, Bluehorn is in the crevice-twilight boundary condition between sky and earth. In the ancient view the world over, the sky was not air, but a kind of ceiling. The air is the interstitial element between sky and earth. Although they will not be able to detect him either in the sky nor on the earth, he does exist in the air. It is their blind sense of what is in the air that makes them think that Bluehorn must be present.

"they had delayed the dancing for a long time" — the motion of the stars in a circle appears to cease only during the day, when they, and Evening Star as well, cannot be seen in the sky.

"he cried" — crying is a way of representing the shining of a star, here Evening Star, using sound for light.

"there's nothing" — Evening Star's position on the horizon is meant to establish him as being in an interstitial position, neither in the sky nor on the ground, but in the seam in between (the crevice of the handle).

"cried himself to death" — allegorically, this would mean that he had gone into conjunction ("death") and therefore has no light left (cried himself out). This is why, they think, he could not be among them (the stars).

"He who Looks at the Sky (Mąxira-horuxucka)" — this is a mere variant of the name Mąxióroxúcka, "Sky Looker," the name given to the same character just sentences prior. In Mąxióroxúcka, the definite article /-ra/ is dropped from mąxi, "sky, cloud," and the /h/ in /horo-/ is dropped. The form /horo-/ is an alternant of /horu-/, found in the name Mąxira-horuxucka.

"the fourth time" — the number four indicates the full complement of anything. So the fourth time in this context is the complete number of revolutions of the stars. This is the moment at which Bluehorn is going to recapture the moon, and it therefore means that it is the time at which the moon is about to return to Bluehorn's lodge underground where she spends the time of her conjunction.

"he put his younger sister in his arrow quiver" — this makes her one with the arrows in identity. In Hocąk the word for arrow is mą, which is also the word for earth, time, spring (of water), et cet. As the moon, she is the means by which time is counted, and therefore expresses the unity of arrows with time and the month. This completes a cycle of time, the month as measured from conjunction to conjunction.

"hen hen" — this is an imitation of the sound that buffaloes make when excited.

"they chased him and he shot arrows at them" — the Evening Star follows after the sun as it sets, so the stars which also travel east to west, follow after Evening Star or "chase" him. He flees east on the earth as do the stars (buffaloes) as they move back into position to rise again. The east is where the moon declines into conjunction below the earth. But Bluehorn is also the blue sky, and when the sky turns blue, the stars are completely wiped out. This is done with arrows (), which is to say, time (). It is time and directionality that kill the stars every day, and cause them to go west to the land of the dead. Evening Star is also now on earth, having completed its full unit of time like the moon.

"he then threw in the west" — this is where all stars go when they set.

Plot Elements. The strong similarities between this myth and "Bluehorn's Nephews" can be tabulated:

Common Plot Elements Bluehorn's Nephews Bluehorn Rescues His Sister
Warrior intimidates people into giving up their young women to be his wives Warrior intimidates people into giving up their young women to be his wives (2) Bluehorn intimidates warrior. The warrior marries the sisters, but they are dominant. [converse] Warrior intimidates people into giving up their young women to be his wives
Younger sister flees warrior Younger sister flees warrior (1) Journey of sisters back to their village. [converse] Younger sister flees warrior
Bluehorn lives with older sister Bluehorn lives with older sister Bluehorn lives with older sister
Younger sister resolves to die atop a hill Younger sister resolves to die atop a hill Younger sister resolves to die atop a hill
Bluehorn lives inside this hill Bluehorn lives inside this hill Bluehorn lives inside this hill
Bluehorn's sister greets her younger sister and brings her inside Bluehorn's sister greets her younger sister and brings her inside Bluehorn's sister greets her younger sister and brings her inside
- The sisters give birth to twins -
- - older sister is not human
- - they will tempt her to look, but she must not do what she suggests
The older sister lulls the victim into a situation in which the victim is vulnerable Bluehorn is lulled into falling asleep as the older sister combs his hair The younger sister is lulled into going outside by the coaxing of her older sister
Abductee unrestrained in movement outside lodge vs. immobile inside lodge Bluehorn is tied down by his hair. The younger sister gives into temptation and wanders outside
Older sister calls on enemy spirits to come and take her sibling Older sister calls on Thunders to take Bluehorn Older sister calls on Buffalo Spirits to come (for her younger sister)
The victim of the older sister is captured by the bad spirits Bluehorn is captured by the Thunders The younger sister is captured by the Buffalo Spirits
The older sister is killed for her treachery The Twins kill the treacherous woman Bluehorn knocks the treacherous woman "senseless"
The protectors set off in pursuit of those who have abducted the victim They set off in pursuit of the abductors He sets off in pursuit of the abductors
They are aided by old women who tell them what Bluehorn had said -
The protectors clandestinely enter into the lodge where the victim is held prisoner They clandestinely enter into the lodge where Bluehorn is held captive Bluehorn clandestinely enters into the lodge where his younger sister is held captive
The protectors hide in plain view, but in a microscopic form They enter into his ears He hides on the handle of the kettle
They sense his presence but cannot find him -
The protectors seize the victim They seize Bluehorn He seizes his sister
The protectors fight a running battle while being chased They fight a running battle while being chased He fights a running battle while being chased
Bluehorn's body regenerates as he returns home -
They nearly rub out the bad spirits, but spare them because they are part of creation They nearly rub out the Thunders, but spare them because they are part of creation They nearly rub out the Buffalo Spirits, but spare them because they are part of creation
They warn them about misconduct in the future They warn them about misconduct in the future They warn them about misconduct in the future

In the Amelia Susman variant of the "Birth of the Twins," the warrior husband and the mother of the Twins fall in love, but her parents object to the man and demand that she leave the village. This she does. In that version, there is no mention of the uncle (Bluehorn) at all. The story of Wazųka has the bullying warrior and an abduction theme, including a prominent role for a warrior who wears a red buffalo head. In other respects it is significantly different.

Comparative Material: There is a reasonably good parallel to this story. It was collected in 1899 at the Cheyenne Agency in Oklahoma, but a footnote at its conclusion says simply "Arapaho," by which it may be meant merely that it also is found among that tribe as well. "Seven men were on the warpath. As they went along, they found a young woman who lived alone, in a solitary tent. These seven men were brothers. They remained with her and called her sister. They hunted and killed much game. The girl made seven buffalo robes for her seven brothers. She embroidered them all with porcupine quills; and she embroidered moccasins also. She worked very much for her brothers, and they were very kind to her and loved her very much. Six of the brothers used to go out hunting, and the youngest, who was only a boy, always stayed with his sister. When his brothers returned with game, he always ran to meet them and welcome them. Once the brothers went hunting again. The boy was outside, a little way from the tent where his sister was. He had a bow and arrows, and was hunting birds. He aimed at a red-bird, and shot it through the breast. The bird flew away, carrying with it his arrow. The boy ran after, to get both the bird and his arrow. Thus he pursued, always thinking he was going to catch the bird, until he had gone far from the tent. Then a powerful buffalo came to the tent and took the girl to be his wife, and made her go along with him, for she was afraid of his power. He took her westward, where there were many buffalo. The brothers returned, bringing game, but they did not see the boy coming to meet them. So they knew at once that something had happened. At the same time the boy came back, and told his brothers what had happened: how he had run after a red-bird which he had shot, and which flew away with his best arrow. The brothers looked all about the tent until they found their sister's tracks, and saw that she had been taken away when she was alone. So they went in the direction in which she had gone. The boy shot off one of his arrows toward the west. When they got to where it fell, there was a large village. The boy went to it, and found an old woman living in a tent by herself. He asked her if she had heard any news. She told him that she had heard that a powerful buffalo had passed that day, taking a fine girl with him to the westward. The boy returned to his brothers and told them what the old woman had said to him. Thus they passed through four villages, always learning the same, until they found where their sister was. They saw a large tepee, in which she was with the powerful buffalo; but all about the tent were buffalo. They stopped and considered what it was best to do. The boy was powerful too. He turned himself into a ground-rat, and dug a hole to where the tent stood. In a short time he dug to where his sister sat alone and sad. Then the boy received her in his hole and took her back to his brothers, who kissed her. Then they returned. As soon as they arrived at their home, they made an iron fence or wall. This inclosure surrounded them fourfold. Then the boy shot an arrow far up toward the sky, and there stood an iron tree in the middle of the inclosure. The sister climbed up first, and then, one after another, all the brothers. Then the whole herd of buffalo came, and surrounded the iron fence, intending to get back the powerful buffalo's wife. They tried to batter down the fence, but they broke their horns. At last they succeeded in breaking it down. Then the great bull tried to overthrow the tree. But now the boy at last succeeded in killing him. These seven men then were raised to the sky, and are said to be a group of seven stars (the Pleiades)."5

Much of the material from the ancient Greek legend of the Trojan War is similar in plot and even characters to our present Hocąk story. In one of these (#2), correspondences depend on a wider context in which other versions of the story supply the matching events. Others might be deemed weak correspondences, yet despite the remoteness of the affinity of these cultures to one another, the correlations between these stories are close enough in content to construct a common paradigm. Their isomorphisms can be tabulated:

Common Elements Trojan War6 Bluehorn Rescues His Sister
1. The Solar Suitor of the Lunar Woman is dangerous. The losing suitors are a danger to the one who wins ("Tyndareos feared that the preferred of one might set the others quarrelling." Biblio. 3.10.9) Brave poses a threat because of his bullying tactics.
2. The Solar Suitor pledges that he will not disrupt the marriage. The suitors swear on pieces of a sacrificial horse that they will protect the winning suitor. (Biblio. 3.10.9)* [Brave pledges that he will not abuse his wives.]
3. The Lunar Woman rejects the Solar Suitor, and leaves with the Chief (husband/brother). Helen is given to Menelaos, future King of Sparta. A (lunar) woman flees her suitor and seeks refuge with Bluehorn.
4. She becomes the Chief's woman. She marries Menelaos. Bluehorn adopts her as his sister.
5. The Chief has a special Friend. Paris is a xenos of Menelaos.† (Bluehorn is the chief of the Buffalo Spirits.)
6. This Friend is foreign. Paris is Trojan. The elder sister calls to the buffaloes in a foreign language.
7. The Friend lives far away. He lives in Troy. They live in a village that is not near anyone.
8. The Planetary Woman promises the Lunar Woman to the Friend. Aphrodite (Venus) offers Paris the love of Helen. (Ep. 3.2) The older sister offers the buffaloes her younger sister.
9. The Chief goes off somewhere. Menelaos goes away to Crete. (Ep. 3.3) Bluehorn goes into the wilderness.
10. The Planetary Woman tempts the Lunar woman to meet with the Friend in a way forbidden by the Chief. Aphrodite tempts Helen with Paris.‡ The older sister tempts the younger to go outside to watch the sport of the buffaloes.
11. When the Lunar Woman succumbs to the temptation, she is carried off by the Friend. When she succumbs, she is carried off by Paris. (Ep. 3.3) When she succumbs, she is carried off by the buffaloes.
12. The Chief lands on a border defined in part by water. The Achaeans land on the strand where they set up camp. (Ep. 3.30-32) Bluehorn lands in a crack in the handle of a kettle of boiling water.
13. The Chief hides in a border area which is near and in plain view. The Achaeans hide in a hollow horse which they place as an offering before the walls of Troy. (Ep. 5.14-15) Bluehorn hides in a crack in the handle of the kettle.
14. Although many voice the opinion that the Chief is concealed nearby, the people conclude after the (favorable vs. unfavorable) testimony of expert prognosticators, that the Chief is not present. Cassandra prophesied that there was an armed force inside, and this was confirmed by Laoccoon. "... but ... most were in favour of sparing it as a votive offering ..." (Ep. 5.16-19) Some think Bluehorn is present, but the expert prognosticators reject the idea and convince most of the buffaloes that he is not there.
15. The Lunar Woman makes an utterance heard by the Chief where he is concealed. "And Helen, going round the horse, called the chiefs, imitating the voices of each of their wives." (Ep. 5.19) The younger sister grunts as she is jostled by the buffaloes, and Bluehorn hears here from his place of concealment.
16. The Chief barely suppresses his vocal reaction. "But when Antiklos would have answered, Odysseus held fast his mouth." (Ep. 5.19) Bluehorn cries quietly.
17. The Friend and his people spend the time celebrating. "... they betook them to sacrifice and feasting." (Ep. 5.17-18) The buffaloes spend the night dancing in connection with a feast.
18. The Chief comes out of hiding unexpectedly. Menelaos and the Achaeans pour out of the Trojan Horse. (Ep. 5.20) Bluehorn comes out of hiding unexpectedly.
19. A battle ensues and the Chief is able to seize the Lunar Woman. "But Menelaos slew Deiphobos and led away Helen to the ships." (Ep. 5.22) Bluehorn seizes the younger sisters and a battle breaks out.
20. The Friend and his kind are wiped out except for two survivors. "Aeneas took up his father Anchises and fled, and the Greeks let him alone on account of his piety. (Ep. 5.21) ... And having slain the Trojans, they set fire to the city and divided the spoil among them." (Ep. 5.23) The buffaloes are wiped out except for one male and one female.
*the detail about the horse actually comes from Pausanias 3.20.9.
†a xenos is a foreign friend who gives hospitality to his visiting counterpart while he is in his country for trade in exchange for a like consideration when he visits his guest in the latter's own country for the same purpose.
‡the natural inference here is that while Paris persuaded (πείθω / peíthō) Helen to go off with him, that it was really the work of Aphrodite, since it was she who had promised Paris her hand. Peíthō means, "to test," and is used frequently in the context of temptation.

We can see a simple original allegory to this kind of story. The Sun, who is betrothed to Moon, is a danger to her because of his fiery excess. Moon instead flees into Twilight (escaping conjunction as it moves into the evening sky). As she is in Twilight's house, an evening star (Venus, Jupiter, etc.) tempts her into union with the Night. She is seduced and is taken (rises) into the abode of Night, who carries her far away from her home (sun, twilight). However, on the opposite side of space and time, long afterwards, Twilight reappears. He is present-but-absent, in a boundary condition on the horizon near the Moon. Some of the denizens of Night think they see him, but their brightest lights are blind to him. She calls out, but is barely audible (visible). He replies, but his voice is muffled (he is hard to see). The denizens of Night spend their time dancing in celebration, but Twilight suddenly appears and (this being the day of conjunction) recaptures Moon. In the battle that ensues, the Night and his denizens are wiped out, save only those needed to repopulate his clan thereafter.

We can easily see how the Hocąk version could evolve from this prototype. The major divergence owes to Bluehorn's prodigious sacred range: he is an underworld Waterspirit, the blue sky, and chief of the Buffalo Spirits by virtue of being Red Star, the Evening Star (of Venus). This means that the seducing sister cannot be playing Evening Star since this star has become subsumed under Bluehorn's nature, so it must be played by a lesser evening star. Because Bluehorn is a Waterspirit, his lodge can be in that subterranean realm where the moon sister actually achieves conjunction. In his story, the sun is commanded by the blue sky, and fades into the background of the myth.

The Trojan War version omits the material of the Iliad, which is clearly a different myth. The horse, which in Indo-European mythology is widely used as a symbol of the sun, both begins and ends the story. The royal suitors each stand upon the sacrificial parts of the horse, and each suitor, as a king, is a "sun" in his own right. They have become a collective Sun which poses a danger to the whole process of betrothal. To prevent their slaying the winner and abducting the bride, their power is trimmed by the clever artifice of an oath to support whomever wins her hand. Menelaos then plays the role of the blue sky, in this case as it exists at twilight. His winning of Helen then corresponds to her disengaging from conjunction with the sun, which is played by the other suitors. She really goes nowhere, as Menelaos succeeds her father as King of Sparta. Venus, in the form of Aphrodite, now conspires through temptation (peithō) to induce the figure of Night, Paris, to carry away Helen (the Moon). As the blue sky has set (Menelaos has left on business), the Night has free play to abduct the Moon. So through the working of Aphrodite's power of temptation, she is able to induce Helen to willingly succumb. She, like the Moon, will traverse to the opposite side of the world from the Sun, and then eventually to the opposite horizon from where she started. Helen ends up in far away Troy. Eventually, after a long time, Menelaos is able to land on the strand before Troy. This is a boundary condition defined by water, but he is not in any way concealed. The boundary condition much later in time is reconfigured into the form of a horse. The same collective (in essence) that swore the oath on the symbolic sacrificial horse, now is not standing on top of a dismembered sacrificial horse, but is inside it. This new horse is also an offering, a votive to the warlike Athena. It is the position of the celestial "horse," the Sun, which is controlled by the blue sky, that defines twilight. The city of the hero Paris is the city of Night, and therefore its walls are the borders of night (the horizon). The solar horse is parked just outside the walls (horizon) where the Sun creates the twilight (of dawn). Inside this horse is the army of day whose fire, the red of dawn, sets the city of night aflame, and ultimately wipes the stars out completely. This particular dawn is the dawn in which the army of day recaptures the Moon through conjunction, and she once again travels with the blue sky and the Sun, his faithful collective allies.

This myth, which in origin was probably not euhemerized, has witnessed a considerable evolution of its religious environment, inasmuch as the gods who patronize the warring factions no longer align according to night and day. Hera, who is associated with the night sky, and Athena whose emblem is the nocturnal owl, are both devoted to the Achæans. Apollo, who is a solar god, is a Trojan partisan. Zeus, who is the blue sky, is portrayed as being to some degree neutral. The horse in connection with the Achæans would most naturally have been associated with the sea god, Poseidon, a god not too alien in his nature to Waterspirit Bluehorn. Any understanding of this myth as an astronomy allegory may simply have been lost and replaced by a sense that it was, and always had been, a narrative of great historical events.

Another problem, which may be the most difficult to overcome, is the relegation of the nature allegory in myth to the status of a heresy. Add to this the natural resistance of Classicists to seeing their sophisticated epics portrayed as an elaboration of a "primitive" myth, makes it a futile enterprise to explore this thesis in any detail. Nevertheless, the correlations adduced strongly suggest that this thesis is in essence true.

Links: Bluehorn (Evening Star), Buffalo Spirits.

Stories: with Bluehorn (Evening Star) as a character: Bluehorn's Nephews, The Twins Retrieve Red Star's Head, Children of the Sun, Grandfather's Two Families, The Man with Two Heads, Sun and the Big Eater, The Green Man (?), Brave Man (?); about two sisters: The Twin Sisters, Old Man and Wears White Feather, The Old Man and the Giants, The Dipper, Bluehorn's Nephews, The Markings on the Moon, The Man Who Fell from the Sky, Pete Dupeé and the Ghosts; about buffaloes and Buffalo Spirits: Buffalo Clan Origin Myth, Eats the Stinking Part of the Deer Ankle, The Blessings of the Buffalo Spirits, White Fisher, Brass and Red Bear Boy, Bluehorn's Nephews, Redhorn's Father, The Woman who became an Ant, Buffalo Dance Origin Myth, The Buffalo's Walk, Trickster's Buffalo Hunt, The Blessing of Šokeboka, The Creation of the World (v. 3), The Annihilation of the Hocągara I, The Medicine Rite Foundation Myth, The Red Feather, Wazųka, The Stench-Earth Medicine Origin Myth, Holy One and His Brother, Old Man and Wears White Feather, The Orphan who was Blessed with a Horse, The Story of the Medicine Rite, Black Otter's Warpath; mentioning people with broken backs: The Green Man, The Raccoon Coat; mentioning lacrosse (kísik): Redhorn's Father, Spear Shaft and Lacrosse, Morning Star and His Friend, Redhorn Contests the Giants, The Roaster, Redhorn's Sons, The Hocągara Contest the Giants, The Blessing of a Bear Clansman, The Shaggy Man, How the Thunders Met the Nights; 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, Įcorúšika and His Brothers, Trickster and the Dancers, Wolves and Humans, The Shell Anklets Origin Myth, The Blessing of Kerexųsaka, Pete Dupeé and the Ghosts, Black Otter's Warpath.

The opening episode of this story is a variant of Bluehorn's .

Themes: attempting to procure a bride through intimidation: The Shawnee Prophet — What He Told the Hocągara, The Spotted Grizzly Man, Bluehorn's Nephews, Heną́ga and Star Girl, Thunder Cloud Marries Again; a powerful man becomes tyrannical: Wazųka, The Spotted Grizzly Man, Brass and Red Bear Boy, Manawa Village Origin Myth, Bluehorn's Nephews, Iron Staff and His Companions; polygamy: Bladder and His Brothers (v. 2), The Spotted Grizzly Man, The Daughter-in-Law's Jealousy, The Green Man, Wazųka, Bluehorn's Nephews, The Markings on the Moon, Redhorn's Sons, The Sons of Redhorn Find Their Father, Hare Kills Sharp Elbow, Hare Gets Swallowed, The Spirit of Gambling; someone depressed by prospects at home goes (at a run) into the wilderness to die: White Wolf, The Moiety Origin Myth, Bluehorn's Nephews; to escape a dangerous person, someone runs into the wilderness: The Father of the Twins Attempts to Flee, Bluehorn's Nephews, Brass and Red Bear Boy, The Two Boys; a woman faced with the choice of marrying an evil spirit or death, runs away: The Woman Who became an Ant, Little Human Head, Bluehorn's Nephews; a woman runs away from her polygamous betrothed out of fear: Wazųka, Bluehorn's Nephews; someone who is exhausted, struggles to reach the summit of a hill, where (s)he is content to die: Ghost Dance Origin Myth II, Bluehorn's Nephews, The Healing Blessing, The Stench-Earth Medicine Origin Myth; a doorway is unexpectedly found in the side of a hill which serves as a lodge for a powerful spirit: He Who Eats the Stinking Part of the Deer Ankle, The Shaggy Man, Bluehorn's Nephews, Thunderbird and White Horse; preoccupation with making arrows: The Man who went to the Upper and Lower Worlds, The Woman Who Became an Ant, Brave Man; a woman abuses someone with whom she is living: Partridge's Older Brother, The Woman who Loved Her Half-Brother, The Quail Hunter, Snowshoe Strings, The Red Man, The Chief of the Heroka, Bluehorn's Nephews, He Who Eats the Stinking Part of the Deer Ankle, Old Man and Wears White Feather, The Were-Grizzly; a woman sings a song that brings the buffalo to her: The Woman Who Became an Ant; a man wears a buffalo head: Wazųka, White Fisher, Buffalo Dance Origin Myth; 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), 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 Hocągara 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), Įcorúšika and His Brothers (ax & packing strap), 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); 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, Įcorúšika and His Brothers, Bird Clan Origin Myth, The Man Whose Wife was Captured, Bladder and His Brothers, The Boy who was Captured by the Bad Thunderbirds, 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 goes out searching for a missing person who was dear to them: The Woman who Married a Snake, Waruǧábᵉra, Eats the Stinking Part of the Deer Ankle, A Man's Revenge, The Man Whose Wife was Captured, Ghost Dance Origin Myth II, Old Man and Wears White Feather, Snowshoe Strings, Brass and Red Bear Boy; a woman is placed in an arrow quiver: Baldheaded Warclub Origin Myth; men fight one another over women: Iron Staff and His Companions, The Green Man, A Man's Revenge, The Man Whose Wife was Captured, Heną́ga and Star Girl; 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, Įcorúšika and His Brothers, How the Thunders Met the Nights, Redhorn's Father, Morning Star and His Friend, He Who Eats the Stinking Part of the Deer Ankle.

Songs. Bladder, Song about the Older Brother (v. 2), Bladder, Song about the Older Brother (v. 3), Buffalo Dance Songs, Clan Songs, Bear Clan, Clan Songs, Bear Clan, Song for Returning, Clan Songs, Bear Clan, Song for Starting Out, Clan Song, Bear Clan, Song of the Youngest, Clan Songs, Buffalo Clan, Clan Songs, Buffalo Clan, The Four Songs of Hojanoka, Clan Songs—Deer Clan, Clan Songs—Wolf Clan, Clan Songs—Wonáǧire Wąkšik Clan, The Crawfish's Song, Duck Song, Farewell Songs, The Four Services Songs, Grandfather Sparrow's Rain Songs, Grizzly Bear Songs, Hare's Song to Grasshopper, Hare's Song to the Wągepanįgera, Hare's Song to Wildcat, Hawk's Song, Heroka Songs, Holy Song, Holy Song II, Little Fox's Death Song, Little Fox's Death Song (for the Warpath), Little Fox's Tail Song, Love Song I (female), Love Song II (female), Love Song III (female), The Mouse Song, Nightspirit Songs, The Quail's Song, Redman's Song, Slow Song of the Heroka, Soldier Dance Songs, Song for Calling the Buffalo, Song from the Water, Song from the Water (King Bird), The Song of Bluehorn's Sister, Hocąk Text — The Song of Sun Caught in a Net, The Song of the Boy Transformed into a Robin, Song of the Frog to Hare, Song of the Thunder Nestlings, The Song of Trickster's Baby, Song to Earthmaker, The Song to the Elephant, The Sun's Song to Hare, Three Warrior Songs, Turtle's Call for a Warparty (v. 1), Turtle's Call for a Warparty (v. 2), Turtle's Four Death Dance Songs, Twins, Ghost's Song (v. 1), Twins, Ghost's Song (v. 2), Twins, Ghost's Song (The Two Brothers), Twins, the Songs of Ghost and Flesh, Twins, Song of the Father-in-Law, Victory Song, Wailing Song, Warrior Song about Mącosepka, What a Turtle Sang in His Sleep, Wolf-Teasing Song of the Deer Spirits. Songs in the McKern collection: Waking Songs (27, 55, 56, 57, 58) War Song: The Black Grizzly (312), War Song: Dream Song (312), War Song: White Cloud (313), James’ Horse (313), Little Priest Songs (309), Little Priest's Song (316), Chipmunk Game Song (73), Patriotic Songs from World War I (105, 106, 175), Grave Site Song: "Coming Down the Path" (45), Songs of the Stick Ceremony (53).


1 Jim Pine, [untitled,] in Paul Radin, Winnebago Notebooks (Philadelphia: American Philosophical Society, n.d.) Notebook #26, 262-284.

2 Wendy Doniger O'Flaherty, Women, Androgynes, and Other Mythical Beasts (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1980) 176. This story is found in Mārkaṇḍeya Purāṇa 103-105, Matsya Purāṇa 11, Padma Purāṇa 5, 8. See also Wendy Doniger O'Flaherty, Hindu Myths: A Sourcebook Translated from the Sanskrit (Harmondsworth: Penguin Books, 1975) 15-16.

3 Paul Radin, The Winnebago Tribe (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1990 [1923]) 62.

4 Francis La Flesche, The Osage Tribe: Rite of the Chiefs; Sayings of the Ancient Men, Smithsonian Institution, Bureau of American Ethnology, 36th Annual Report (Washington, D. C.: U. S. Government Printing Office, 1921) 134.

5 Alfred L. Kroeber, "Cheyenne Tales," The Journal of American Folklore, 13, # 50 (July - September, 1900): 161-190 [182-183 (Story XIX)].

6 Apollodorus, Biblioteca 3.10.9, Epitome 3.3-5.23.