Page:Amazonian Tortoise Myths.djvu/34

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— 26 —

the sun and moon are rarely seen to set in the sea. On the Amazonas, however, the sight of their disappearance behind a water horizon is a familiar one to the Indian. If this myth is really of native growth, it would be interesting to discover whether it originated on the Amazonas, or on the coast.

The following is a somewhat free translation of another story I obtained in the Lingua Geral, at Santarem:—


HOW A TORTOISE KILLED A JAGUAR[1] AND MADE A WHISTLE OF ONE OF HIS BONES.

A monkey was high up in an Inajá tree[2] eating the fruit, when a jabutí came up underneath, and, seeing the monkey, asked:

"What are you doing, monkey!"

"I am eating Inajá fruit," answered the monkey.

"Throw one down to me," said the tortoise.

"Climb up, jabutí," retorted the monkey.

"But I cannot climb."

"Then I will descend and fetch you."

Down went the monkey and carried the tortoise up into the tree, placing him on a bunch of the fruit. He

  1. De Gubernatis. Zoölogical Mythology. Vol.11, p. 110. See also p. 213 and Reineke Fuchs.
  2. The palm Maximiliana.