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Legendary Native American Figures: Tshakapesh (Chakabesh)
Tribal affiliation: Cree, Innu, Ojibwa, Atikamekw
Alternate spellings: Chakapesh, Chakapish, Chikapash, Chaakaapaas, Tcikapis, Shikabish, Tsukabec, Tshakabesh, Djakabish,
Tsuabec, Tcakabec, Tchakabech, Tcakapas, Tsja'bec, Tcika'pis, Cha-ka-bes, Sheecabish, Tcikabis, Chikabis, Tcikapec, Tcakabesh,
Tcakapas, Tchakabech, Djakabish, Djokabesh, Chahkabesh, Cahkapes, Cahkâpêsh, Jakabich, Chaakapesh, Tcakabish
Pronunciation: Varies by dialect: usually similar to chuh-kah-pesh
Also known as: Man in the Moon
Type: Little person, hero,
Related figures in other tribes: Mikmues (Wabanaki)
Tshakapesh is a folk hero of Cree and Innu folklore. He is often referred to as the Man in the Moon in English, since the myth
cycle about Tshakapesh usually ends with the hero travelling to the moon and living there.
Tshakapesh is usually depicted as a dwarf or a young boy who never reaches full size, yet he has immense strength and
can shoot his bow farther than the largest of men. Tshakapesh also has magical powers which allow him to face and
defeat many fearsome monsters. In some stories Tshakapesh acts in a rash or foolish way, often ignoring the
advice of his wise and cautious older sister and ending up in a jam because of it. But Tshakapesh is
always brave and good-hearted and never stays in trouble for long.
Tale of Tshakapesh:
The epic of the boy hero Tshakapesh, narrated by an Innu storyteller.
Tshakapesh and the Elephant Monster:
Innu myth about the birth and first adventure of the hero Tshakapesh.
When Tcikabis Trapped The Sun:
An Atikamekw legend about the trickster Tcikabis getting into more trouble.
Cree Legends and Narratives from the West Coast of James Bay:
Comprehensive book of Swampy Cree and Moose Cree stories, including several stories of Chahkabesh.
Wolverine Creates The World:
Collection of Innu legends and folktales from Labrador.
Anthology of stories, songs, and oral history from the Naskapi, Cree, and other Algonquian tribes.
It's Like the Legend
Canadian First Nations
Eastern Woodland cultures of North America
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