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Hánaki Unnáŋam w ibkay Aciy
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mythological origins of the Achiyitqan people
This public article was written by severy, and last updated on 28 Feb 2019, 14:36.

[comments] Menu 1. 'ukbinoosii gigóda // Two peoples fight 2. Kahánagiayoqu // At the salmon run 3. (Summary of the rest)
[top]'ukbinoosii gigóda // Two peoples fight

Kaalitsaab, tulq inatahsil’a, iidalaste ‘ukbinoosii: kaqutkowa kaɥolqu, w kaasaniy kalápkai. Ka’uksii iiɥiɥowtaun. Kaɥolqutkowa kaláp iibiik, dúe iniicasa osúog’ita, ya kaleissainaɥnii iisiglow. Aun kaasaliy ani iniió’uhpa, ya kaniskuyi kaɥolqu iniiyehlt, ya kaliigo kataudtéeka ihqti iiklisp, iicobiikattó.

In the south, where the land does not freeze, there once lived two people: the humans of the land, and the elves of the sea. The two were very different. The land-humans feared the sea, for they did not know how to swim, and the deep cold waters were frightenng. But the sea-elves could not breathe air, and were not familiar with the animals of the land, and the light of the bright sky hurt their eyes, so they feared that.

Aun, kuwmiwa iidiacasa : kakulbaai kaplka iigéyŋa w iidepottu’esa. Ya it adce’ahtóa. Kaqutkowa kaskeni kalápkai iigienella, w kagliysk kalápmuwnkaya w kuhkaya. Ya kaasaniy kasmétksittsun kaɥolqu w ka’iinsk kamóoskaya iiglassa. Alitáhecoqai, bíqsiiy iniiposka it ogód’ah, aun geaydoiy nai’u ii’eho’etta’.

But, each knew this: the home of the other was rich with resources. And so they were jealous of one other.

The humans craved the salt of the sea, and the meat of the sea-mammals and the fish. And the sea-elves longed for the rich metals of the earth and the wood of the trees. For a many years, their fears kept them from confrontation, but eventually their greed became too strong.

Ani it iipí’ah, aun ani inpagé’ah, ya it sudéy’es w iiselɥsena. Kuwmiwa iináaha kagayésk owiissa pánɥ it depottut kataplkeya ani iiposkaw, aun kuwmiwa iniihnoonaw. Ya it iimabóohtalu’ahtó‘is. Ka’ukbinoosii iigóda alitáhecoqai. Táhsuhniy iiksów alisúhŋullo, ya ibinay w ibuɥay kamaŋi iicaena hekasuksóɥiokeyay. It mu’ai w kakéttol iniidanuw. Koéɥuwa iipitáalla ibinay iigóda, w iimapa. Iimistót.

They could have traded, but they could not understand one another, and they became impatient and angry. Each desired to control the coasts so they could access the other’s resources, but neither was willing to share. And so they soon declared war with one another.

The two people fought for many years. Many warriors died in battle, and the survivors lived to pass on their dispute to their children, and their grandchildren. They wasted time and life.

The old gods watched their children fighting and felt sad. So they intervened.

[top]Kahánagiayoqu // At the salmon run

Kaalinim kahánayi ii’ebulkaw ɥaipéiŋay owe’n, ‘ukibkaip iipaqil: dí kaasalkaya, w dí kaqutkokeya. Bimiáli kaqutkowa iidaana hebehqi pánɥ kaɥaipéiɥ iimúl ya iyistuhgia, aun tulq iitúalt, iitikuwt leɥhánais has itiycebelhat. Ɥatuhgiiciy iiqaigɥiil ŋes’áqgauhqay, ɥalce, ya kataplaw iidayistalóɥalu ka’oláp. Catlásol iiqaigtikuwt: kaasaliy hmoqskiy itiyaɥi ya cituhgia kataiɥaippaib. Pihk kuwmiwa itiyhánagiaw deaeco, kanasgɥaipéin initiynultatton omókteew. Ya pihk níhlohanayi iipagéw naukoco, itiygódatcippo ya ani incasat ohnoo el odéy’es, maga tuhgiayosk iipessuwat w ii’esúhŋullat.

On the day that the salmon begin returning to their streams to spawn, two children were born: one to the sea-elves, and one to the humans.

The humans left their village at dawn to go to the stream and fish it, but when they arrived they found less salmon than they had expected. They left one fishing party at their usual location upstream and traveled down towards the sea. There they found the cause of the problem: the sea-elves had set up a net and were fishing at the mouth of the estuary. Although both had harvested the salmon run every year, they had never before chosen the same stream to target. And although there were enough salmon for both peoples, they had been fighting so long that they could not think to be patient or share, so they forgot about fishing and began to battle.

Cisúhŋullatto, tukocoyi ‘uktéask iniistíega: yadí, ‘óttunni kasuytówguttabáela kaqutkokeya iyep, ya’uk, c’eppohánae kabáela kaasalkaya iigiad yatsippis ya iisúogɥalce laŋsig. Kúyeuwa peiɥniskuis iniigooh, toéɥuwa séu itiyniskusenacis.

While they were involved in their battle, no one noticed two things: firstly, a large fox carried off the unsupervised newborn of the humans, and secondly, a great salmon caught the sea-elf infant in its mouth and swam off upstream with it. Neither was a normal animal, but old gods who had taken on animal forms.

Kasúhŋullo inii’aicippo, dúe ho’quŋ’es iisoltonpihtt, w kaqutkowa pewlaami okowhaw ‘oɥoltaun, mud’atóo kahegusodii, w kaasaliy ‘oláptaun pihk tilqaltóo kanaasii iilú’eŋa. Kúyeuwa iniistíega kabáelawa iilasstaw ‘edeyohip. Koco iibelah kaibkaip itiyksów kaaliquŋ o kaalisúhŋullo, ya iiɥlónatto.

The battle did not last long, for a great storm appeared out of the blue and the humans were forced to retreat further inland away from the stinging winds, and the sea-elves back out to sea to avoid the crashing waves. Neither noticed until some time later that the newborn babes were missing, and then it was too late. They all assumed that the babies had died in the battle or the storm, and so they grieved.

Tulq kaqutkowa kaɥalcegáuh iilúw, iitiskuwt kaledtuhgiicaw ciksída laŋc’eppohánai súe hmoqski itiyikkuwh. Ya paibot tulq kalága iipsiwksout, tsippinis iibih w kaibino kaasalkaya iihedena w kaaliaɥ. Kaŋi’a séu ibka itiyɥap kabáela iiqohm w iyisbo domdeiis. ‘uyainis iipí sig kamúlagsk oó’uhp has qutkowa anóiw.

When the humans reached their upstream fishing encampment, they found the remaining fishers struggling with a great salmon that had broken through their nets. When they finally took spears to the beast, its mouth opened and the child of the sea-elves fell free into the water. The mother who had lost her baby took the infant from the stream and took it to her breast. Her milk gave it the power to breathe air as humans do.

Ya tulq kaasaliy iibulkaw loímbehqqay, ‘óttunni iitikuwt séu kaquŋi itiyaneil, ya tulq iyisskolceqohm kabáela kaqutkokeya iihedena kahetiit. Ya has kaqutkowaŋi’a, kaasale séu ibka itiyɥap kabáela iibo w iyisalinn yawehéesqaiis, ya iignecs kaaniyosk oaɥ’úhp has asaliy anóiw. Dúe kaibino kaasalkaya qehŋaluomi qutkoiŋa nauhána, iyispoósa Hánaki. Ya dúe kaibino kaqutkokeya iyatomi kaalitimuwhn unnika, iyispoósa Unnáŋa. Ya ka’ukbinoosii ka’ukeidibkas iyalilast has koonuɥo.

And when the sea-elves returned to their underwater village, they found a great fox drowned by the storm, and when they gutted it the human baby fell from its stomach. And like the human mother, the sea-elf who had lost her child took the infant and coated its skin in her shed scales, and so it grew the ability to breathe water as sea-elves do.

Since the baby of the sea-elves was brought to the human by a salmon, they named it Hánaki. And since the baby of the humans was found in the stomach of a fox, the sea-elves named it Unnáŋa.

And both people adopted their new children as their own.

[top](Summary of the rest)


As they grew the two children realized they did not fit in with their adoptive peoples; they looked different, felt different, and thought different. Both found themselves more intrigued by the shoreline and what lay beyond - the closed woods and the open sea - than their families did. Both began to visit the forbidden zone when they could get away from their parents. Finally the two met, and they recognized their similar situations, and became close friends. They knew that if they were discovered, their adoptive peoples would not approve, and would punish them severely. Nevertheless, they met often, growing up together, and eventually falling in love and producing a child.

They named it Niŋuutp'a, secret of the sea otter, who would later be called Aciy, and kept it hidden in a cave on the shoreline, taking turns as caretakers for as long as they dared. Niŋuutp'a was a true hybrid, with a mixed appearance and the abilities of both peoples, raised with the knowledge and tradition of both cultures. The child was often left alone for great lengths of time, but never took ill or suffered an attack from a wild beast.

However, the prolonged absences of Hánaki and Unnáŋa when they went to care for their child were finally noted, and when the couple were finally caught by their people - first Unnáŋa, and later, Hánaki - they were given the choice to give up the life of their child, or take it and leave, never to return.

And although they dreaded living alone and did not wish to leave the families they loved, the two decided to take Niŋuutp'a and left their peoples behind, heading north.
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