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Native Languages of the Americas:
Mojave Legends, Myths, and Stories

This is our collection of links to Mojave folktales and traditional stories that can be read online. We have indexed our Native American myths section by tribe to make them easier to locate; however, variants on the same legend are often told by American Indians from different tribes, especially if those tribes are kinfolk or neighbors to each other. In particular, though these legends come from the Mojave tribe, the traditional stories of related tribes like the Yuma and Maricopa are very similar.

Enjoy the stories! If you would like to recommend a Mojave legend for this page or think one of the ones on here should be removed, please let us know.

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Important Mojave Mythological Figures

Matevilya (also spelled Matevilye, Matavilya, Matyavela, Matevil, and other ways): The first creator god of Mojave myths. He created the earth and brought the people to it, then became the first death in the world when his daughter the frog used witchcraft to kill him.

Mustamho (also spelled Mastamho): Matevilya's younger brother, he took over the job of creation after his brother's untimely death. He shaped the landscape to be more hospitable to the people and created animals to live on the earth.

Mojave Indian Folklore

*Mohave Origin Story:
    Mojave myth about the creation of the world.
*Mohave Flood Myth:
    Mojave legend about the flooding of the earth.

Recommended Books on Mojave Mythology

Surviving Through the Days: Translations of Native California Stories and Songs:
    Anthology of myths and traditional literature from the Mojave and other Native California tribes.

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Additional Resources

 Mohave religion and expressive traditions
 The Religion of the Indians of California
 Books of Native American legends
 Indian religion
 Arizona Native Americans
 Southwest Native Americans
 Southwestern art
 Yuman language
 Mojave culture
 Native American Indians cultures

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Learn more about the Mohave tribe.

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