Page:Myth, Ritual, and Religion (Volume 1).djvu/215

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important are the Maoris or natives of New Zealand, the Mangaians, and the Samoans. Beyond the common and world-wide correspondences of myth, the divine tales of the various South Sea isles display resemblances so many and essential, that they must be supposed to spring from a common and probably not very distant centre. As it is practically impossible to separate Maori myths of the making of things from Maori myths of the gods and their origin, we must pass over here the metaphysical hymns and stories of the original divine beings, Rangi and Papa, Heaven and Earth, and of their cruel but necessary divorce by their children, who then became the usual Titanic race which constructs and "airs" the world for the reception of man.[1] Among these beings, more fully described in our chapter on the gods of the lower races, is Tiki, with his wife Marikoriko, twilight. Tane (male) is another of the primordial race, children of earth and heaven, and between him and Tiki lies the credit of having made or begotten humanity. Tane adorned the body of his father, heaven (Rangi), by sticking stars all over it, as disks of pearl-shells are stuck all over images. He was the parent of trees and birds, but some trees are original and divine beings. The first woman was not born, but formed out of the sun and the echo, a pretty myth. Man was made by Tiki, who took red clay, and kneaded it with his own blood, or with the red water of swamps. The habits of animals, some of which are gods, while others are descended from gods, follow from their conduct at

  1. See "Divine Myths of Lower Races."