Native American languages * Native American cultures * Native American nations

Native American Legends: Maheo (Maheu)

Name: Maheo
Tribal affiliation: Cheyenne
Alternate spellings: Maheu, Maiyun, Maheo'o
Pronunciation: Similar to mah-hey-yoh.
Also known as: Great Spirit, Great Medicine, Sky Chief, Master of Life, Heammawihio, Heamaveeho, Heammawehio, Maxemaheo, Maxematasooma, Ma:manstomanehe
Type: High gods, Creators
Related figures in other tribes: Gitchi Manitou (Anishinabe), Tabaldak (Abenaki), Kitanitowit (Lenape)

Maheo is the Cheyenne name for the Creator (God.) In English he is often referred to as Great Medicine, Great One, or the Great Spirit; Maxemaheo and Maxematasooma are longer Cheyenne names literally meaning "Great God" and "Great Spirit." Maheo is a divine spirit without human form or attributes and is rarely personified in Cheyenne folklore. In some myths, Maheo is referred to as Heammawihio, which means "Spider Above." This may be an appellation borrowed from their Arapaho kinfolk, who referred to the Creator this way to differentiate him from the earthly Spider figure. Maheo is by far the more common name. It is pronounced similar to mah-hey-yoh in Cheyenne.

Maheo Stories

*The Great Medicine Dance:
    The legend of Maheo the Creator and the origin of the Cheyenne sacred ceremonies.
*Great Medicine Makes a Beautiful Country:
    The traditional story of how Maheu created people and animals.

Recommended Books of Related Native American Legends
Our organization earns a commission from any book bought through these links

Tales of the Cheyennes:
    Collection of Cheyenne legends and folktales.
Algonquian Spirit:
    Excellent anthology of stories, songs, and oral history from the Cheyenne and other Algonquian tribes.

Sponsored Links

Additional Resources

 Cheyenne gods
 Cheyenne language
 Cheyenne pronunciation
 Nebraska tribes
 The Great Plains

Back to Native American Indian Gods
Back to American Indian Legends for Kids
Learn more about the Cheyenne tribe.

Native American genealogy * Nantucket history * Indian herb * Mukluks for sale * American Indian jewelry

Would you like to help support our organization's work with endangered American Indian languages?

Native Languages of the Americas website © 1998-2020 * Contacts and FAQ page