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Native Languages of the Americas:
Deg Hit'an/Ingalik Stories, Myths, and Legends

This is our collection of links to Deg Hit'an folktales and traditional stories that can be read online. We have indexed our Native Indian lore section by tribe to make them easier to locate; however, variants on the same legend are often told by American Indians from different tribes, especially if those tribes are kinfolk or neighbors to each other. In particular, though these legends come from the Deg Hit'an tribe, the mythology of related tribes like the Tanana and Koyukon tribes are very similar.

Enjoy the stories! If you would like to recommend a Deg Hit'an legend for this page or think one of the ones on here should be removed, please let us know.

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Important Deg Hit'an Mythological Figures

Raven (Yixgitsiy or Yuxgitsiy): Raven (or Crow) is the creator god of the Deg Hit'an and other Alaskan Athabaskan tribes. He is a revered and benevolent transformer figure who helps the people and shapes their world for them, but at the same time, he is also a trickster character and many Raven stories have to do with his frivolous or poorly thought out behavior getting him into trouble. His Deg Xinag name, Yixgitsiy, literally means "your grandfather" (referring to the audience listening to the story as Raven's descendants.)

Beaver: Also known as the Transformer or Wanderer, Beaver is a heroic monster-slayer in Deg Hit'an folklore. Frequently he uses his cleverness rather than his strength to defeat his enemies, at which point he either kills them or transforms them into something harmless.

Deg Hitan Indian Folklore

*Deloy Ges:
    Deg Hit'an legend about Raven's attempt to make a mountain out of sand.

Recommended Books on Deg Hit'an Myth

The Stories of Long Ago:
    Bilingual book of Deg Hit'an/Ingalik myths from the Alaska Native Language Center.
Our Voices: Native Stories of Alaska and the Yukon:
    Collection of legends and oral history from the Deg Hit'an and other Athabaskan tribes.

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Additional Resources

 Ingalik religion and expressive traditions
 Books of American Indian legend
 Native American religions
 Alaska tribes
 Subarctic Indian cultures
 Athabaskan languages
 American Indian tribes



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