Myth-Folklore Unit: British North America

Overview. This selection of legends told by First Nations people of Canada is drawn from Judson's Myths and Legends of British North America, featuring stories of the Haida, Shuswap, and Inuit peoples, along with many more. There are creation stories about the beginnings of the world and about the origins of light, the stars, and the wind, and how the seals and the salmon came to be. In fact, from the Dakelh legend about the creation of light, you will finally learn what the fox says: "Fox kept singing, 'Khain, khain, khain' because he thought in that way he would gain light." In these stories you will meet the formidable Nuxalk goddess Qamaits, "Afraid of Nothing," and the hero Manabozho with his grandmother, plus the animal tricksters Raven, Coyote and, last but not least, Wolverine.

Language. Judson's book is an anthology of stories takes from various anthropological sources, written in a variety of styles. Some of the stories are told in a more traditional oral style, while other stories are edited in a style more like literary prose.

Story Length. Most of the stories here are quite short, and all of them are single-page stories.

Navigation. You will find the table of contents below, and you can also use this link to see the story posts displayed on two pages total: British North America. Click "Older Posts" at the bottom of that page to see the second page.
  1. Beliefs
  2. Creation of the World
  3. How the Earth Was Formed
  4. Creation of the Earth
  5. Origin of Rivers in Queen Charlotte Islands
  6. Origin of Haida Land
  7. Raven and Moon Woman
  8. Creation of Light
  9. Grizzly Bear and Coyote
  10. Origin of Light and Fire
  11. The Burning of the World
  12. Why the Sun is Bright
  13. The Man in the Moon
  1. Origin of the Chinook Wind
  2. Origin of the Pleiades
  3. Turtle and Thunder
  4. The Making of Lakes and Mountains
  5. Coyote's Gifts
  6. The Coming of the Salmon
  7. Coyote and the Salmon
  8. Wolverene and the Geese
  9. Nanebojo and the Geese
  10. The Adventures of Nanebojo
  11. Coyote and Fox
  12. Big Turtle
  13. Wolverene and Rock

(illustration in the book)