Page:Picturesque New Guinea.djvu/302

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The Koitapu Tribe and their Witchcraft.

Koitapu Tribe and Sorcery.

As a tribe the Motuans have few traditions, and very little mythology, although a very superstitious people. One night, sitting with a number of old men, they told me that with the Koiari and Koitapu tribe they came from two ancestors, named Kaimaikuku and Kirimaikapa, who came from the earth with one female dog, which they took unto themselves. A son was born, then a daughter, and again a son followed by a daughter.

The first two grew up and married, and their children numbered fourteen. Two went far back and became the progenitors of the Koiari tribe, two went in from the coast by the banks of the Laroge, and from them descended the Koitapu tribe. The others all went to Eelema, where they increased. Long after a quarrel occurred in Eelema. An elder brother desired his younger one to procure him some sago, but the younger, intent on making a bow, turned a deaf ear to the request. Again and again was the request made, but with the same result. Other members of the family, knowing the eldest brother's request, went and procured sago, but would on no account let the younger brother have any, and threatened any who would give him even only a grain, with death. The difficulty increased, and the younger brother decided with a good following to leave, which accordingly they did, and arrived at Taurama (Pyramid Point), where they long remained, increasing in numbers and strength, and finally came to Hanuabada (Port Moresby), where they now live. They speak of themselves as "sea natives," and the Koitapuans are "the land natives."

When leaving Eelema the Spirit said, "Go, but never forget me. In feast and in dance I will be with you, and the sound of your drums will be heard by me when I shall indeed bless you."