Informational Site NetworkInformational Site Network

Finding Of The Islands


Source: Myths & Legends Of Our New Possessions & Protectorate

One of the oldest legends of the Hawaiians relates to the finding
of their islands by Hawaiiloa, a great chief and great-grandson
of Kinilauamano, whose twelve sons became the founders of twelve
tribes. Guided by the Pleiades he sailed westward from America, or
northward from some other group,--doubtless the latter,--and so came
to these pleasant lands, to the largest of which he gave his own name,
while the lesser ones commemorate his children. In another tradition
the islands of Oahu and Molokai were the illegitimate children of two
of his descendants, who were wedded, but jealous of one another and
faithless. Still another folk-tale runs to the effect that an enormous
bird, at least as large as the American thunder-bird or the roc of
Arabia, paused in its flight across the sea and laid an egg which
floated on the water. The warmth of the ocean and the ardor of the sun
hatched the egg, and from it came the islands, which grew, in time,
to their present size, and ever increased in beauty. Some years after
they were found by a man and a woman who had voyaged from Kahiki in
a canoe, and liking the scenery and climate, they went ashore on the
eastern side of Hawaii, and remained there to become the progenitors
of the present race. It suggests the ark legend that this pair had in
their canoe two dogs, two swine, and two fowls, from which animals had
come all that were found running wild there a hundred years ago. The
people can never be thankful enough that these visitors differed from
Nuu in their lack of regard for the snakes, scorpions, centipedes,
tarantulas, and mosquitoes that are so common to tropic lands, for,
having neglected to import these afflictions, the islands got on
without them until recently. Mosquitoes were taken to Hawaii on an
American ship. The hogs and dogs are descendants of animals that
escaped from the wreck of the Spanish galleon Santo Iago in 1527.

Next: Ancient Faiths Of Hawaii

Previous: The Voice In The Inn

Add to Informational Site Network

Viewed 2035