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Native Languages of the Americas:
Yuma/Quechan Legends, Myths, and Stories

This is our collection of links to Quechan 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 Quechan tribe, the traditional stories of related tribes like the Mojave and Maricopa are very similar.

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

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Quechan Mythological Figures

Kokomaht (also spelled Kwikumat and other ways): The great Creator god of Yuma legends. He was poisoned by a vengeful frog Hanyi (by some accounts his daughter) and died, leaving the job of the creation to be finished by his son Komashtam'ho. Sometimes he is also known as Tuchaipa, which is his Diegueno name.

Bakotahl: Kokomaht's evil twin brother, responsible for the creation of diseases and other ills. Sometimes he is also known by his Diegueno name Yokomat.

Komashtam'ho: Quechan culture hero, son of the creator Kokomaht. He finished the world his father had begun and taught the people the arts of civilization.

Quechan Indian Folklore

* The Good Twin and the Evil Twin * Yuma Creation * Yuma Creation Myth:
    Quechan myths about the creation of the world.

Recommended Books on Quechan Mythology

Surviving Through the Days: Translations of Native California Stories and Songs:
    Anthology of myths and traditional literature from the Quechan and other Native California tribes.
And It Is Still That Way:
    Charming collection of legends told by Quechan and other Arizona Indian children.

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Additional Resources

 Quechan religion and expressive traditions
 The Religion of the Indians of California
 Books of Native American legends
 Native American religions
 Yuma words
 Indian tribes of Arizona
 Southwestern crafts
 Southwestern Indian culture
 Yuman Indians
 Quechan culture
 Native Americans groups



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