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Native American Legends: Stonecoat (Stone Coats)

Name: Stone Coat
Tribal affiliation: Iroquois nations, Huron
Native Names: Thunenhyarhen; Ronongwaca; Otneyarheh, Ot-nea-yar-heh, Ot-ne-yar-heh, Ot-ne-yar-hed, Atnayalho, Atn'yalhu, Atenenyarhu; Genosgwa, Gennonsgwa, Genonskwa, Genonsgwa, Ge-no-sqwa, Ge-no'sgwa, Genonska; Strendu; Ganehwa:s
Also Known As: Stonecoat, Stone-Coat, Flint Coat, Stonecoats, Stone Coats, Stonish Giants
Type: Giant, monster, stone spirit
Related figures in other tribes: Stoneclad (Cherokee), Giwakwa (Abenaki), Windigos (Ojibwe), Jenu (Mi'kmaq), Witiko (Cree)

Stone Coat is the name of a mythological rock giant of the Iroquois-speaking tribes. In some tribal traditions there is only one Stone Coat, while in others, there is a whole race of them. Stone Coats are descibed as being about twice as tall as humans, with their bodies covered in rock-hard scales that repel all normal weapons. They are associated with winter and ice, and they hunt and eat humans. In some legends Stonecoats were once human, and became cannibal monsters as a curse punishing them for evil deeds, like the Windigos of Chippewa mythology. In other legends Stonecoats were never human, but were a tribe of primordial man-eating monsters created by Flint.

Stonecoat Stories

*Skunny-Wundy and Stonecoat:
    Seneca legend about the comic hero Skunny-Wundy outwitting a Stone Coat.

Recommended Books of Stonecoat Stories
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When the Chenoo Howls: Native American Tales of Terror:
    Collection of eerie stories about the Stonecoat and other Native American monsters.
The Wonderful Sky Boat:
    Book of Native American legends and lore, including a Cherokee story about Stonecoat.
Skywoman: Legends of the Iroquois:
    Wonderful illustrated collection of Iroquois Indian legends, by two Native authors.
Legends, Traditions and Laws of the Iroquois or Six Nations:
    Iroquois mythology and oral history told by a 19th-century Tuscarora chief, including the Stonish Giants.

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Additional Resources

 Iroquois myth
 Mohawk Indians
 Seneca tribe
 Huron Indians
 New York languages
 Northeast Woodland Indians
 Iroquois family



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