Legendary Native American Figures: Medawisla (Medawihla)
Name: Medawisla Tribal affiliation:Abenaki, Penobscot Alternate spellings: Mdawilha, Madawilha, Medawihla, Mathawila, Mdaweelh, M-da-weelh-ak Pronunciation: muh-dah-wee-lah Type:Loon Related figures in other tribes:Kwemoo (Micmac)
In Wabanaki folklore, Medawisla the loon plays the role of messenger and loyal friend of the culture hero
Gluskabe. Medawisla is something of a spy
(always observing the people and reporting his findings to Gluskabe,) but since Gluskabe is such a
benevolent figure, Medawisla is viewed positively nonetheless. The name Medawisla literally means
"spirit bird" or "magic bird," because of his associations with Gluskabe. The loud, eerie cries of the loon were
often said to be Medawisla's reports to Glooscap about the activities of men.