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Native Languages of the Americas:
Hupa Legends, Myths, and Stories

This is our collection of links to Hupa folktales and traditional stories that can be read online. We have indexed our Native American myths 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 Hupas, the traditional stories of neighboring tribes like the Shasta and Karuk tribes are very similar.

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

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Important Hupa Mythological Figures

Yimantuwinyai (also spelled Yimantuwingyai, Yinantuwingyan, Yimankyuwinxoiyan and other ways): The Hupa culture hero. He is sometimes known as "Old-man-across-the-ocean" in English. He plays the role of both trickster and transformer in Hupa myths; he is a heroic monster-slayer who helps shape the world for humankind, but in many stories his foolish and reckless behavior also causes trouble for himself and the people around him.

Hupa Indian Folklore

*Hupa Texts:
    Collection of Hupa myths and legends.
*By The River She Made Baskets:
    Hupa legend about the children of a water spirit.
*The Story of Dug-from-Ground:
    Hupa legend about a magical boy.
*Mythology of the California Tribes:
    Early 20th-century collection of Hupa and other California Indian legends.

Recommended Books on Hupa Mythology
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Surviving Through the Days: Translations of Native California Stories and Songs:
    Anthology of myths and traditional literature from the Hupa and other Native California tribes.

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Additional Resources

 Hupa religion and expressive traditions
 The Religion of the Indians of California
 Native American myth books
 American Indian beliefs
 Hupa tribe
 Hupa language
 California Indian reservations
 California cultural area
 Na-Dene languages
 Native American

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