Legendary Native American Figures: Ixtcibenihehat (Spider of Heaven)
Name: Ixtcibenihehat Tribal affiliation:Gros Ventre Alternate spellings: Ihityebi-Nihaat , Ihichebi-Nihant, Ihcebe-Nihat Pronunciation: similar to ih-hih-cheh-bih-nih-hawt Also known as: Spider of Heaven, Man Above, Creator, Chebbeniathan Type:High god,
Creator Related figures in other tribes:Maheo (Cheyenne),
Gitchie Manitou (Anishinabe),
Ixtcibenihehat means "Spider Above" or "Spider of Heaven" in the Gros Ventre language,
and is the Gros Ventre name for the Creator (God,) as distinguished from the earthly
Nihaat. The name is often
translated in English as "Man Above," since the literal form of a spider is not ascribed to Ihityebi-Nihaat.
Some people believe that Nihaat and Ihityebi-Nihaat were originally
the same mythological entity, and split into two figures after trickster legends were
borrowed from the Crow and Sioux.