Native American Mythology

The Gods and Spirits of North America...

RAVEN

Native American Trickster God

Also known as CHULYEN, HEMASKAS, GUGUYNI, NANKIL'SLAS, KWEKWAXA'WE, KWEKWAXAWE, YHEL

Picture of the Native American Trickster God Raven from our Native American mythology image library. Illustration by Chas Saunders.

Infamous Creative Trickster God of North America

There is more to Raven than meets the eye. And how many of you have met the eye of a raven?

Ravens have always been associated with Godliness. Few people know that the first bird out of Noah’s ark was a raven. It just didn’t return. It didn’t feel the need. Odin relies on his two ravens to fly round the world every day and keep him informed. Edgar Allan Poe’s raven shrieked ‘Nevermore’ but what that has to do with anything only Poe knows.

He is known by many tribes under many names. For example, the Tsimshian know him as Txamsem. His brother Logobola is also a bit of a tricky customer, but, despite what you may have heard, absolutely no frogs are involved.

In the beginning, Raven was first and foremost a Creator and Trickster God — especially of the Haida tribe, who claim he discovered the first humans hiding in a clam shell and brought them berries and salmon.

A bit of a tricky God himself, he’s also the long-suffering victim of arch-rival in trickery, Coyote.

Stories about Raven abound. Check out Txamsem for a tale handed down by the Tsimshian tribe. But there’s plenty more. Remind us to tell you the one about Raven and Coyote. It’s a corker.

Raven Facts and Figures

Name: Raven
Pronunciation: Coming soon
Alternative names: CHULYEN, HEMASKAS, GUGUYNI, NANKIL'SLAS, KWEKWAXA'WE, KWEKWAXAWE, YHEL

Gender: Male
Type: God
Celebration or Feast Day: Unknown at present

In charge of: Mayhem
Area of expertise: Trickster, Mischief, Mayhem

Good/Evil Rating: Unknown at present
Popularity index: 842

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Article last updated on May 24, 2019 by Rowan Allen.
Editors: Peter J. Allen, Chas Saunders

References: Coming soon.

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