Sivut kuvina


what he had seen, he only wondered about the thing himself. The coconut trees of their own accord grew up in separate groves, the number of which matched that of Dagi's children, and after a time the village was encircled by these groves.

One day Núe said to his father, "You me (we) drink gámoda, to-morrow you me take dog, go along bush. You me go two man, leave him altogether brother along place." The next day at dawn they called their dogs and set out to hunt in the bush. After they had killed a pig they came to the coconut groves. Núe did not tell his father at once what he knew of the coconuts, but merely asked him, „Father, what name (what is) that tree?" Dági, also keeping his thoughts to himself, said, „I no savy what name." Then Núe said, "That pigeon he been sing out my name, I plant him. He come grow, I plant him dry fruit again." Dági told the boy to tie a string round his ankles and sent him to knock down some nuts from the tree which had been planted first. They drank the milk, and opened some nuts which gave a hollow sound and ate the creamy kernel. Their dogs were begging for some and whined, „Na, na, na," and Núe gave each of them a little. When the dogs had eaten it they fell down dead, and so did Dági, 13 but he was only "gammon dead" and expected to learn something about coconuts in a dream. Núe placed his father and the dogs side by side, covered them with a coconut-leaf and went home, and when he was asked where his father and the dogs were he only answered, „I don't know where he been go."

Dági dreamt that the coconut came and said to him, „Me belong kaikai, me coconut, I no poison, you kaikai," and the different kinds gave their names, ámetáme, sári, óbeóbe, and others.

In the morning the dogs woke up and began to howl, „Uuu-i!" waking up Dági. Till then the dogs had possessed the faculty of speech but it was now lost. Núe heard their howl and thought, "Oh, that dog he sing out, another yarn (cry) come out now, proper yarn he lose." It is since that time too that dogs have ceased to obey their masters, and steal their food. The dogs ran home in front of Dági and leaped up at Núe, but they could not speak and only expressed themselves by whining.

Núe prepared oil from a coconut with which he smeared his long hair, up to that time. the people had for that purpose only used the oil of a small fruit called úme or kúmai. The sun was very hot, and as the oil flowed all over Núe's body the people wondered, „Oh, what name (what is) that good grease he got? What's the matter all over you (your) body grease he go?“ But Núe only answered, "Oh, father been plant him that proper úme, that full up grease. Wild one you take him, that's why no plenty grease."

The next day Núe told the people to make baskets and coconut-huskers and go with him to the bush, and they all went to the first coconut tree. Everybody wondered, „Dági, Núe, what name (what is) that tree?" and Núe told them his story (abbrev). He distributed the coconuts among the different totemic groups. Two men named Wée and Dobási were away fishing and did not get any.

All the people were now busily collecting coconuts of all kinds, some for drinking and others for eating, making oil, or planting. On smearing their hair with the oil they said, "That's thing Núe proper stow away (kept secret) before, make him good grease, go all over body." Two men named Óme and Búgere had not made proper coconut-huskers, but used ordinary


sticks for that purpose, and that is why even now both methods of skinning coconuts

are in use.

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When Wée and Dobási came home they wondered at all the coconuts. „Núe been plant him," the others explained, he sing out people. What name (why) you fellow no come, go look out fish?" "Me fellow hungry," said the two, ,,more better you give me two fellow. Me give you fish." But the people replied, "Fault belong you. What for you no been come?,, The two men tried again and again to get some coconuts but nobody would give them any, and they had to content themselves with fish.

The next day the people arranged a great feast, and Wée and Dobási planned how to take revenge upon the others. They decided to make two rats which should ruin the coconuts. At first they made them of a kind of soft wood, but the teeth were not strong enough and broke off. Then they used the right kind of wood and succeeded better. They made two ngáluge or gage (rats), and afterwards mingled in the crowd so that nobody should know of their doings. Everybody wanted to watch or take part in the dance, those who could not walk were carried to the dancing ground by the others, and the women held burning torches in their hands. to light up the scene.

While the people were dancing, Wée and Dobási stole away to the coconut grove and passed into the two wooden rats. They gnawed a hole in every one of the coconuts which the people had stored in the bush, and when all were finished they went into the houses and did the same with the nuts which were kept there. Then they collected ants and put them into the holes, and the ants consumed all the meat which was left.


Towards morning a little child began to cry and asked its mother, "Oh, mother, one coconut I been leave him, I want kaikai." The mother fetched a coconut and handed it to the child, and all the ants swarmed out through the hole, and the nut had to be thrown away. What name been make (what has made) that hole, all ant he come?" the woman cried out. She asked another woman, "You give me coconut," but to their astonishment they found that there was a hole in all the nuts and every hole was full of ants. The people ceased dancing and came to look, "Oh, somebody been spoil him all coconut!" they called out. One of them said, "Where that two fellow? I think he been spoil my coconut." Wée and Dobási had placed their wooden head-rests underneath their mats so as to make the people believe that they were sleeping there, while really they had transformed themselves into the two rats. Where that two fellow he go?" everybody was asking. Two fellow he stop there underneath mat," said somebody, and thus the two men managed to avert suspicion.

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In the morning some boys were sent to examine the coconuts in the bush, and they brought back word that all were ruined except the young ones which had no kernel. The people flew into a rage, men and women seized their arms, surrounded Wée's and Dobási's house, and forced the door open, meaning to attack the two men. But they had transformed themselves into rats and were on the look-out. The people swarmed in and beat the two mats, thinking that the culprits were underneath until they found out their mistake: „Oh, that wood, where two fellow he go?" The two rats leaped upon the shoulders and head of one man, and the others shot their arrows at them but hit the man instead, and from him the rats sprang upon n another man, and he too was killed. The people had been made cranky" by the two men and were

fighting each other with their bows and arrows and stone clubs, and the affray did not end before half of their number were killed. 50 The two rats ran into a hole in a tree, and one of them peeped out and addressed the people, saying, 40,,My name gage. All time I humbug coconut belong you fellow. All rat follow me two, I beginning now."

The people buried their dead and attended to the wounded. Later on they left Gúruru and settled at Ádrepupu. After many fights with the Írupi people some of them went to Másingára and others to Édami. (Some Másingára men).



A. This version is very like the previous one. The bush-fowl called out in the night, knáio pirr núe-núe-núe.“ After a fruitless attempt Núe managed to kill the bird and buried it as in the first version. A coconut palm sprang up, and Dági planted nuts all over the country. Dági and the dogs „died" for a while on first eating the coconuts, and while he was in this state two étengena came to him and taught him what coconuts were. In order to silence the dogs which were begging for

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nuts Dági passed his arm-guard on to their muzzles, and since then dogs have lost the faculty of speech. They could only ask for nuts by whining, U-u-u,“ and „Ia," and from their cry coconuts are called ia in the Másingára language. The coconuts were distributed among the different totemic groups of the people. Wée and Dobási were left without nuts and took revenge as in the first version. Dági was informed of their treachery in a dream, and there was a fight, after which the two men ran away. (Some Másingára men).

B. This version begins with the story of Dági, the man with the enormously long arm which eventually was shortened by two women (cf. no. 365), He married them, and the elder of them bore him a son who was named Núe. The boy shot the bird which cried out his name. He was visited in a dream by a spirit in the shape of a coconut palm and told to bury the bird, which he did. When Núe opened the first coconut, his dogs licked up the milk which ran on to the ground. He gave a little of the kernel to an inferior dog by way of trial, but the good dogs came and snatched it away and ate it, and at last he tasted a little himself. Núe distributed coconuts among the people, and each group was on this occasion given a totem. Núe had killed the bird with an arrow made of ósewood (in Kiwai páruu, the „te“ palm of which flooring is made), which became his totem, and he called his group of people ósingere. Some of the bird's blood had been spilled on the ground, and a bush with red blossoms called óbeu (in Kíwai, múmu or kópo) grew up there, and it was made the totem of another group called óbeu-tópe. The bird had been perching in a rita-tree which was given as totem to a third group of people called rivengere. In the act of falling the bird had been caught by a thorn of a certain creeper called ááro, and one of its claws had fastened in the fruit of a tree called úaúa or téka (this fruit looks like a bird's claw), and for this reason the ááro and úaúa became the totems of two other groups of people. The two men who were left without coconuts transformed themselves into rats (génoho) and provided themselves with a pair of large front teeth in each jaw. They ruined all the coconuts, and in the ensuing fight the people killed many of their own side as in the first version. Once a man managed to catch the tail and hind legs of one of the rats, but the skin stripped off, and since then the tail and hind legs of the génoho are white. The rats ran up into a tree which the men began to cut down, and when it fell the animals leaped into another tree, and thus the chase went on for a while, but the rats escaped. Before disappearing, the two men who were rats spoke to their pursuers, saying that the fault was not theirs but that of the people who had refused them any share in the coconuts. (Námai, Mawáta).


THE FIRST YAM (no. 264-265).

264. At Gáima there lived a woman named Tshikáro. She was akin to a spirit, for she could make herself insensible and could withdraw into the ground when she wanted. At the same place there lived a man named Wávuro. He had no wife, and one day he made a hole in the ground and had connection with it. But in reality he had connection with Tshikáro who had passed into the ground just beneath the surface. This was repeated every day for some time, but Wávuro did not know that there was a woman in the ground. After a time Tshikáro became pregnant, and her father said, "Where you get him that thing, you no got no husband?" An enclosure of mats was put round her bed and one day she brought forth a number of yams, but no one knew what they were, for the people had not seen any before. One night Tshikáro's father dreamt that a yam came to him and said, "Oh, Wávuro make me, he kobóri (cohabits with) mother. That name belong me umámu (the common name for yam), other kind he name erávo, other kind he name búmoria," and it enumerated the different kinds of yam, sixteen in all, and then went on, I (am) kaikai belong you, you keep me some time, behind (then) you plant me. North-west time (the wet season) make me grow big, south-east time (the dry season) you kaikai, you keep me two moon, plant me again."

On waking up the man thought, "Oh, he good dream to-night, I got good thing." And he washed all the yams in water and kept them some time without eating them. Then he planted them, and they grew very large, and furnished the people with plenty of food. All the different yams have been brought from Gáima, people came from all quarters to get some for planting. (Káku, Ipisía).

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265. The first yams came into existence in this way. Two unmarried women in Díbiri named Gávidi and Séruórobo were once complaining that they had no husband. Every woman got man, you me (we) no got no man," they said. They took some leaves of a kind of wild. yam called kútae and swallowed them without chewing them, thereby becoming pregnant, and the people thought that they had been "stolen" by some men. In the course of time Gávidi brought forth some yams of different kinds which she named sido, koko, iwáibi, and oromútu, and Séruórobo gave birth to some other kinds of yam which she called opio, páráko, mudi, páto, and iniini. The people did not know anything of what had happened. Gávidi and Séruórobo cut down and burned the bush and cleared the ground for a garden, and after rubbing all the roots with fluid from their vulvae they planted them in the ground. The yams started growing, and the stems began to wind round the sticks which the women had put in the ground for that purpose.

One day an old woman happened to come to the garden which she had never seen before, and she went and called all the people to come and look. They were all greatly surprised at the large yams which were growing in the garden, and when they had returned home, Gávidi and Séruórobo told them how they had born the yams (abbrev). The Díbiri people were very glad, and first one man said to Gávidi, "Oh, that my woman," and then another said to Séruórobo, "Oh, that my woman," and they married them. The people all planted yam gardens, and the same,,medicine" which was introduced by the two women is still used. (Gaméa, Mawáta).


266. An unmarried woman named Opae who lived alone at Djíbu one day ate some swamp-fish, and as they contained certain „eggs" she became pregnant. After a time she bore a boy without knowing what it was. "What kind thing I born him?" she thought, „more better I leave him here." She did not know how children should be carried and suckled, so she left the boy and went to Kuru. There she saw some people and at once thought to herself, "Oh, bad thing (that) I been chuck away that thing. All woman belong this place carry him that thing, give him amo (breast), I got ámo too.“ And looking at the men who went about nude she thought, „Oh, that all same stick he hang down. That pickaninny belong me same stick he got. I think that's boy I been born him."

But the boy who had been abandoned by his mother did not die, although nobody looked after him and he remained lying on the ground. A bird called guru used to fly every day between Abámu (near the Óriómu river and Áberemúba) and a large swamp at the source of the Bínatúri river, and on seeing the baby, it thought, „Oh, something stop underneath, I think ⚫ that small boy. Poor fellow no got no bed." On returning from the swamp the bird carried in its beak the leaf of a plant called sibara-kíkópu which grows in the water, and dropped it on the boy, who rolling about on the ground lay down on the leaf. The next day the bird brought the boy another leaf, both of which fastened to his arms and made them look like the two leaves of a taroplant. Another time the bird brought him the dry skin of the same plant, and it stuck to his body and covered it entirely. Lastly it brought him a root of the plant which fastened to his head and fixing itself in the ground began to grow. The bird thought, „Oh, head he down along ground now. On top two hand (arms), two leg he stop, hand he got leaf, leg he got leaf." The boy's eyes had become transformed into two tubers of the root. In the end a genuine taro-plant was growing there.

One moonlight night a Kúru man, while hunting in the bush, came to the place where the taro was growing, and on seeing the plant he thought, "What name (what is) that? I no see him before what kind wood he grow, grass (the leaves) come up along ground. I think that óge (in Mawáta, áuhi, a kind of wild taro).“ But looking closer he said, "Oh, that no óge,“ and went away.

One night the new plant appeared to the man in a dream and said, "You take me, I (am) kaikai, that my name dje. That small thing alongside me (the tubers) you plant him." In the morning the man went and pulled up one of the roots which he placed in his armguard with the leaves standing up. He prepared gámoda which he drank by himself, and afterwards lay down to sleep with the root lying close to him. The plant said to him again, „That thing you been take him, that name idje-mómro, that pickaninny he come out from dje; you plant him. Where you plant him you súsu (make water) on top, make him good along ground. Little bit he grow, you súsu again. You go take him out pickaninny, plant him again." And it went through the names of the (supposed) different kinds of taro, fifteen in all, and taught the man what,,medicines" to use when planting them. The man was told to rub his digging stick and the first taro to be planted with a mixture of swamp-water, urine, and beeswax. While the taro was growing he was to prepare a „medicine" ot water, urine, and burned feathers of a guru

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