American Indian language
Native American Indian cultures
Native American Legends: Mhuwe (Mhwe)
Tribal affiliation: Lenape,
Alternate spellings: Mhwee, Mhuiwe, Mehuwe, Mhwe, Mhuuwe, Mamuui, Maaleew, Malew
Related figures in other tribes: Kee-wakw (Abenaki),
Mhuwe is a man-eating ice giant of Lenape legend, like the Windigo of the Ojibway and Cree tribes.
Not many tales of Mhuwe were ever recorded, but like the better-known Windigo,
Mhuwe was a fearsome monster associated with starvation, cannibalism, and sin.
A person who tasted human flesh or went mad from the cold might turn into a Mhuwe,
and in at least one Lenape legend,
a Mhuwe monster that is treated kindly and given civilized food to eat can be turned back into a human.
Recommended Books of Related Native American Legends
Legends of the Delawares:
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Collection of Delaware Indian folktales including four in Lenape (with English translation.)
Mythology of the Lenape:
An overview of the Lenape worldview and belief system including several legends and traditional stories.
Excellent anthology of stories, songs, and oral history from the Delaware and other Algonquian tribes.
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