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Native Languages of the Americas:
Wichita Indian Legends, Myths, and Stories

This is our collection of links to Wichita folktales and traditional stories that can be read online. We have indexed our Indian mythology 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 Wichitas, the traditional stories of related tribes like the Caddo and Pawnee tribes are very similar.

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

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Important Wichita Mythological Figures

Kinnekasus (Man-Never-Known-On-Earth.) This is the Wichita name for the Creator (God.) Sometimes he is also referred to by the Plains Indian term "Great Spirit." Kinnekasus is a divine spirit and is not generally personified in Wichita stories.

Kiarsidia (Man-With-The-Power-To-Carry-Light or Having-Power-to-carry-Light.) The first man, created by Kinnekasus, who taught the Wichita men the secrets of hunting. He became the Morning Star.

Kashatskihakatidise (Bright-Shining-Woman.) The first woman, created by Kinnekasus, who taught the Wichita women the secrets of agriculture. She became the Moon.

Handsome Boy and Afterbirth Boy (or Lodge Boy and Other Boy.). These mythical twins whose mother was killed by a monster are common to the folklore of many Midwestern and Eastern tribes. They are usually portrayed as heroic monster-slayers in Wichita legends.

Coyote (Ketox or Kitaks, in the Wichita language.) Coyote is the trickster figure of the Wichita tribe. As in other Plains Indian mythology, Coyote is sometimes anthropomorphized into human form and other times depicted in the shape of a coyote (sometimes both within a single story.) Wichita stories about Coyote range from light-hearted tales of mischief and buffoonery, to more serious legends about the nature of the world, to ribald jokes.

Double-Face (Witschatska, in the Wichita language.) A man-eating ogre with faces on both sides of his head.

Headless Man: A man-eating monster with a gaping mouth but no head.

Wets-the-Bed: An orphan hero of Wichita folklore.

Wichita Indian Folklore

*The Moon and the Morning Star:
    Wichita creation myth.
*Coyote Challenges Never-Grows-Larger:
    Wichita myth about Coyote's bet with a snake.
*The Skin Shifting Old Woman:
    Wichita legend about a man who brought his murdered wife back from the dead.
*Two Brothers Who Became Stars:
    Wichita legends about the hero-twins Lodge-Boy and After-Birth-Boy.

Recommended Books on Wichita Mythology

Hold Up The Sky:
    Anthology of legends from the Wichita and other Texas tribes.
American Indian Trickster Tales:
    Compilation of more than a hundred stories about Coyote and other Native American tricksters.
    (Use discretion sharing these with kids as some of the stories contain adult humor.)

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Additional Resources

 Wichita religion and expressive traditions
 Books of Native American legends
 Native beliefs
 Kansas Indian reservations
 Plains Native Indians
 Caddoan languages
 Wichita culture
 About Native Americans

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