Native Languages of the Americas: Seneca Legends, Myths, and Stories
This is our collection of links to Seneca folktales and traditional stories that can be read online.
We have indexed our American Indian stories 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, so you may also want to visit our page comparing
the stories from the Iroquois tribes (which
include the Oneida, Onondaga, Cayuga, Mohawk, and Seneca Indians), since the traditional stories of those
tribes are very similar.
Enjoy the stories! If you would like to recommend a Seneca legend for this page or think one of the ones on here
should be removed, please let us know.
The mother goddess of Seneca mythology, said to have fallen through a hole in the sky.
The Twin Gods:
Sky Woman's twin grandsons, Sky-Holder
(Djuskaha) and Warty (Othagwenda.)
These twin deities were the creators and culture heroes of the Iroquois people.
Sky-Holder was the god of life and created many things to help humankind; his twin Warty
was the god of death and primarily caused destruction.
The high god of Seneca mythology, a benevolent teacher and caretaker of the world.
Powerful storm spirits who live in the sky and cause thunder and lightning. Although they are
dangerous beings and their gaze can bring death to mortal men, they usually play a positive
role in Seneca myths and are typically portrayed as honorable and fair. The thunder god
Hine is their eldest brother and leader,
often called "Grandfather" by the Senecas.
Spirit of the Corn, a fertility goddess and one of the Three Sisters of Seneca agriculture.
Drum Dancers (Jogeon, in Seneca):
Little people of Seneca Indian legends. They are dwarf-like nature spirits about 2 feet tall.
Stonecoats (Genosgwa, in Seneca):
Mythological giants of the Iroquois tribes, with skin as hard as stone.
Flying Head (Dagwanoeient, in Seneca):
Monster in the form of a giant disembodied head, usually created during a particularly violent murder.
Naked Bear (Niagwahe, in Seneca):
A giant, hairless bear monster. Some people associate them with mammoths.
A dragon-like horned serpent of the Great Lakes, feared for its habit of capsizing canoes and eating people.