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Maidu Indian Legends
This is our collection of links to Maidu folktales and traditional stories that can be read online.
We have indexed our Native American 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. In particular, though these legends come from the Maidus, the traditional stories of
related tribes like the Achumawi and
Atsugewi tribes are very similar.
Enjoy the stories! If you would like to recommend a Maidu legend for this page, please let us know.
(Kodoyanpe, in the Maidu language, also known as Earth-Initiate):
The benevolent Creator god of Maidu mythology.
The Maidu trickster figure. Coyote is Earth-Maker's assistant in the creation of the
world, and sometimes does things to help mankind. However, his failings of character
(Coyote is portrayed as reckless, greedy, deceitful, careless, and socially inappropriate) are
constantly getting him and the people around him into trouble.
In Maidu stories, Kohuneje is a hairy Bigfoot-like monster who lives in the forest and eats human children.
Collection of Maidu myths and legends.
Tolowim Woman And Butterfly Man:
Maidu legend about the fate of a fickle woman.
Maidu Creation Myth:
Maidu story of the origin of the world.
The First Man And Woman:
Nishinam (Southern Maidu) origin myth.
The Theft of Fire:
How fire came to the Maidu people.
Why the Sun Follows the Moon:
Maidu legend about the origin of the sun and moon.
Mythology of the California Tribes:
Early 20th-century collection of Maidu and other California Indian legends.
Myths and Legends of California and the Old Southwest:
Online book about Southwest and California Indian mythology.
Recommended Books on Maidu Mythology
Surviving Through the Days: Translations of Native California Stories and Songs:
Our organization earns a commission from any book bought through these links
Anthology of myths and traditional literature from the Maidu and other Native California tribes.
Maidu religion and expressive traditions
Maidu Indian tribe
Native American folklore
Indian culture and beliefs
Native Americans in California
Tribes of Native Americans
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