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Legendary Native American Figures: Iwarrika
Tribal affiliation: Akawaio
Also known as: Iwaryka, Iwarika, Capuchin, Brown Monkey
Type: Monkey spirit, trickster, flood causer
Iwarrika is a mythological monkey from the Akawaio and other Cariban tribes of South America.
He is a trickster figure noted for his intelligence but also his laziness, disobedience, greed, and insatiable curiosity.
Iwarrika is blamed for accidentally flooding the earth by disturbing a dam built by the benevolent demigod Sigu, either because
of the monkey's inherent curiosity or because he was trying to steal food from Sigu (depending on the version told.)
The name "Iwarrika" literally means "Monkey" in the Akawaio language (in particular it refers to the
weeping capuchin... the Carib tribes
had different words for many specific types of monkeys.)
Acawai Flood Myth:
Akawaio legend about Iwarrika causing the world flood.
Recommended Books of Related Native American Legends
Guyana Legends : Folk Tales of the Indigenous Amerindians:
Good collection of Akawaio and other Guyanese mythology, including two stories about Iwarrika.
South American mythology
Amazonian Native Americans
Indian animal spirits
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