Page:Amazonian Tortoise Myths.djvu/42

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opossum, to see which could the longer stay buried. The jabutí was first interred by the mukúra, and came out in good order. The jabutí then buried the mukúra under a heap of dried leaves, and left him. A few days after, when he came to look at him, he found only a swarm of flies.

Here the solar tortoise, who buries himself daily, without harm, induces the nocturnal mukura, or moon, to follow his example, resulting in the extinction of the latter.


THE TORTOISE SENDS THE JAGUAR ON A FOOL'S ERRAND

A jabutí and a spider entered into a sort of copartnership, and lived together. The jabutí had killed a tapir, and was engaged in cutting up his flesh, when a jaguar came along.

"Well jabuti", said he to the tortoise, "what are you doing?"

"I have killed a tapir, and am dressing him," answered the jabutí.

"I'll help you," said the jaguar, who immediately fell to and helped himself, much to the disgust of the jabutí. Presently the latter said to the jaguar:—"I am very thirsty, and am going to get some water. Spider, go on storing away the flesh in your house!"

The tortoise went off a short distance, wet himself in the dew, and returned.