Sacred Texts  Pacific 

Hawaiian Mythology

by Martha Beckwith

[1940 (no renewal)]

This is Martha Beckwith's monumental study of Hawaiian mythology. Beckwith utilized numerous texts which are today rare or hard to obtain to construct this study. She gives all available variants of each myth or legend, including versions from other Pacific islands including Tahiti, Tonga, Samoa and others. This is primarily a critical edition of the key Hawaiian myths, and Beckwith largely does not attempt to interpret the texts, rather to examine both variant narratives and core folklore motifs. The book covers every significant theme in Hawaiian mythology, from the origin myths of the Hawaiian gods and goddesses, to more recent legends of star-crossed lovers. She also covers such topics as Kahunas (sorcerors) and Menehunes (fairies).

Title Page

Part One: The Gods

I. Coming of the Gods
II. Ku Gods
III. The God Lono
IV. The Kane Worship
V. Kane and Kanaloa
VI. Mythical Lands of the Gods
VII. Lesser Gods
VIII. Sorcery Gods
IX. Guardian Gods
X. The Soul After Death

Part Two: Children of the Gods

XI. The Pele Myth
XII. The Pele Sisters
XIII. Pele Legends
XIV. Kamapua‘a
XV. Hina Myths
VI. Maui the Trickster
XVII. Aikanaka-Kaha‘i Cycle
XVIII. Wahieloa-Laka Cycle
XIX. Haumea

Part Three. The Chiefs

XX. Papa and Wakea
XXI. Genealogies
XXII. Era of Overturning
XXIII. Mu and Menehune People
XXIV. Runners, Man-Eaters, Dog-Men
XXV. The Moikeha-La‘a Migration
XXVI. Hawaiiloa and Paao Migrations
XXVII. Ruling Chiefs
XXVIII. Usurping Chiefs

Part Four. Heroes and Lovers in Fiction

XXIX. Kupua Stories
XXX. Trickster Stories
XXXI. Voyage to the Land of the Gods
XXXII. Riddling Contests
XXXIII. The Kana Legend
XXXIV. The Stretching-Tree Kupua
XXXV. Romance of the Swimmer
XXXVI. Romance of the Island of Virgins
XXXVII. Romances of Match-Making
XXXVIII. Romances of the Dance
XXXIX. Wooing Romances