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Legendary Native American Figures: Whun

Name: Whun
Tribal affiliation: Chehalis, Cowlitz
Alternate spellings: Xwun, Hwun, Honne, Xwa'ni
Pronunciation: like "one," except that the word begins with a raspy whistle as if you were trying to blow out a candle.
Type: Trickster

Whun is a Salishan trickster character. Although he plays an important role in the Chehalis creation myth, his pranks are more socially inappropriate than Bluejay's, and stories about him tend to feature a lot of adult humor.

Originally, there was a strong distinction between the Transformer Moon and the ribald trickster figure Whun. In modern times this distinction has eroded. It is likely that the Transformer's name "Qone" is actually a corruption of the name Whun, and the intermediate form "Honne" is used by some modern storytellers to refer to the Moon and by others to refer to the Trickster. The X-rated adventures of Whun are rarely heard anymore except in a few anthropology texts, and many Native storytellers today refer to the two magical heroes interchangeably.

Whun Stories

Honne Names The Salmon:
    Excerpt from the Chehalis creation myth, in which Honne transforms fish.

Recommended Books of Related Native American Legends

Honne, the Spirit of the Chehalis:
    Origin myth of the Chehalis told by a Native storyteller.
Salish Myths and Legends:
    Anthology of legends and traditional stories from the Salishan tribes.

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Additional Resources

 Coast Salish Lifeways
 Chehalis gods
 Chehalis Indians
 Washington Indians
 The Northwest Coast
 Salishan language

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