Page:Amazonian Tortoise Myths.djvu/43

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— 35 —

"Where is the water?" asked the jaguar, "for I also am thirsty."

"Go off in this direction," said the tortoise, pointing with his finger. "The water is just beneath the sun. Go straight ahead, following the sun, and you will find it". The jaguar walked and walked, but found no water; so, disgusted, he returned to finish the cutting up of the tapir. But the jabutí and spider had worked diligently while the jaguar was gone, and had stored all the flesh in the house of the spider, leaving only the bones for the jaguar.

This tale is exactly matched by the following African story given by Koelle:[1]

A weasel and a hyena, wishing to cook an animal killed in the chase, sent out the weasel to search for fire. The weasel went, but returned unsuccessful. The hyena, on seeing the sun set in the west, thought that it was fire, arose, and said to the weasel:—"Look after our meat, while I go and "fetch the fire."

While the hyena was gone, the weasel hid the meat in a hole. The sun set as the hyena was going toward it and he returned. The weasel said that two men had stolen the meat and hidden it in the hole. The weasel went into the hole, promising to tie the meat to the hyena's tail; but instead he tied the tail to a stick, so that when he called out to the hyena to pull, the

  1. African Native Literature, p. 166.