Yu.E. Berezkin, E.N. Duvakin

Thematic classification and distribution of folklore and mythological motifs by area

Analytical catalogue

Ethnicities and habitats

M45. The predator pretends to be dead.

.11.-.13.15.27.-. (.67.74.)

When a zoomorphic character falls asleep or pretends to be dead (seriously ill), the animals he usually hunts gather to meet him. He catches or kills them, or they run away at the last minute.

Scythe [jackal and wolf], kimbundu [rabbit and monkey], von [hyena], eve [wildcat], hausa [cat and mouse], soninke [cat], tivo [wildcat], susu [wildcat], kanuri [stork], Malgashi [crocodile], Spaniards (Murcia) [fox], Burma Naga [tiger], Greeks [cat], Russians [cat], Ukrainians [cat], Dargins [cat], Norwegians [cat], Finns [cat], menominee [raccoon], Ojibwa (north shore of Lake. Upper) [raccoon], mississauga [raccoon], marsh crees [otter], seneca [raccoon], chirokee [opossum and rabbit], screams [wild cat and rabbit], chumash [coyote], navajo [coyote], western apache [coyote], hicarilla [coyote], western ceres (Laguna) [coyote and skunk; coyote and rabbit], oriental ceres (Paguacate) [fox], (guarazu [monkey and caiman], araucans [fox puma]).

Bantu-speaking Africa. The scythe [during hunger, the jackal offers the wolf (omwolf) to build a kraal with a narrow exit, pretend to be dead; calls baboons - supposedly their enemy is dead; they torture that the wolf blinks, run away; other animals are not so attentive, locked in the kraal, the wolf and the jackal ate them]: Klipple 1992:44; kimbundu [the monkey offers the rabbit to babysit the lioness and eat the cubs; she wants them eat themselves, they promise better prey, offer to pretend to be dead; animals gather in the house, the lioness kills them; the monkey and the rabbit offer to bring firewood to fry meat on fire; in the forest they promise meat to the snake, they bring a lioness, he kills it; all three carry firewood, the snake has it on its head and tail; the monkey sets it on fire, the snake burns; all the meat goes to the rabbit and the monkey]: Nekrasova 1975:84 -86.

West Africa. Background: Herskovits, Herskovits 1958, No. 59 [Hyena was the chief of the animals; pretended to be dead; his assistant Belka called the animals to the funeral, but noticed that Hyena's eyes were open; told the Hare; they began to sing, letting others know that Hyena was pretending; the animals ran away, the hunter shot Hyena that rushed after them], 127 [The hyena pretended to be dead, the animals came to bury; she rushed to gathered, some ran away]: 253-254, 439-440; eve [the wild cat asked the monkey to look for fleas, fell asleep; the detoxifier tied her by the tail; the cat asks the snail to untie it; tells her to announce animals that will die in 5 days; animals come to dance around the body; a cat jumps up, tries to grab a monkey, which manages to jump on a tree; since then, monkeys have lived in trees and are afraid wild cats]: Ellis 1890, No. 3:274-275 (retelling in Klipple 1992:45); soninke [the mice hid from the cat in the hole; he says he has changed his character, will not touch anyone and is about to die; after a long mouse vibrations let the cat in; he pretends to die, then closes the exit with his body, kills mice; a hunter walks by, kills a cat; mice: this is God's retribution]: Daniel 1910:46-47; hausa [the cat grew old, pretended to be dead; the mice were about to dance, he grabbed the old mouse, the rest hid in holes]: Laptukhin 1964:13-14; tiv [wild cat pretends to be dead; rat announces this; all the rats gather, only one mouse doesn't believe the cat is dead; the cat jumps up, kills rats]: Klipple 1992:46; susu [wild cat pretends to be dead, rats and mice gather around, she jumps up, there are enough of many]: Klipple 1992:46.

Sudan - East Africa. Kanuri [one stork advised another to pretend to be dead; the frogs gathered and decided to carry the body away from their home; the stork jumped up, grabbed a bag full of frogs; ever since frogs fall silent when someone comes to the water - suddenly it's a stork]: Koelle 1854, No. 2:156-158 (translated into Okhotina 1962:325-327, summary in Klipple 1992:47); (cf. sanye [lion to hare: help me find game, otherwise I'll starve; buries a lion in the sand, invites animals to come dance; the lion jumps up, kills many]: Barrett 1911:37-38; malgashi ( entankarana) [the crocodile pretends to be dead; his children call the guinea fowl to mourn him; they sing that if the crocodile is dead, he must move his leg, open its mouth and eyes; he does so, the guinea fowls run away]: Klipple 1992:47).

Southern Europe. The Spanish (Murcia) [the wolf and the fox agree on how to catch the rabbits; the fox pretends to be dead, the rabbits gather for the funeral, but one says that a dead fox must move its paw; the fox does that, the rabbits run away]: Hernández Fernández 2013, No. 66B: 60.

Tibet is the Northeast of India. Burma's Naga [the tiger pretended to be seriously ill; asked for a branch fence around him; after making it, the monkeys fell asleep, and the tiger quietly grabbed them one at a time and ate them; monkey tongues left them for the future as a treat under the protection of a cat; the bear ate them; the tiger gnawed off his head; the fox offered to carry the bear's head like a trophy after the winner; disappeared unnoticed, taking her head away]: Zapadova 1977:246-248.

The Balkans. The Greeks [mice bury the cat]: Uther 2004 (1), No. 43*: 85.

Central Europe. Russians (Karelia), Ukrainians (Kursk) [Cat (cat) funeral: mice bury an imaginary dead cat; before burial, it "comes to life" and catches mice; {rare story - book origin?}] : SUS 1979, NO. 113*: 69.

Caucasus - Asia Minor. Dargins [the cat dozed off, the mice thought it was dead, started jumping on it, singing, dug a hole, dragging it to bury it; the cat was tired of it, it strangled a couple of mice, the others ran away, the cat fell asleep again]: Ganiyeva 2011a, No. 3:66-67.

Baltoscandia. Norwegians [a cat pretends to be dead, an owl calls three crows to carry a coffin at a funeral, a cat jumps up, attacks a raven]: Hodne 1984, No. 113*: 36; Finns [mice bury a cat]: Uther 2004 (1), No. 43*: 85.

(Wed. The Arctic. Northern Alaska Inupiate (Point Hope) [Raven and Owl invite lemmings into the dugout, dance, and watch the lemmings enthusiastically; when dancers rush to kill lemmings, they jump out of the house; The Raven and the Owl grab only one, divide it in half]: Lowenstein 1993:92-94).

The Midwest. Menominee [The raccoon sees a lot of crayfish in the river, pretends to be dead, so that larvae crawl on it; Cancers gather, grab them and eat them; two crustacean girls come and say let him eat and them; he does it, throws their shells into the river, says Cancers will now become crayfish]: Bloomfield 1928, No. 94:339-343; Ojibwa (north shore of Lake. Upper) [The Cancer leader gathers a detachment to go to war on the Raccoon; Cancers find the Raccoon on the shore, think he is dead; surround the imaginary corpse, pinch it; the raccoon jumps up, kills, eats many Cancers; the leader returns home with few survivors, executed]: Jones 1919, No. 6:369; Mississauga [The raccoon lowered his tail into the water, pretended to be dead; Cancers grabbed him, he pulled them out, ate them, wrapped them in a bag of his excrement, told Wolf it was tasty, Wolf ate; Raccoon said what was in the bag, the Wolf killed him]: Chamberlain 1889, No. 2:142; Swamp Cree (Albany) [The otter pretended to be dead, in the nose and in the anus laid down a rotten tree; the Toadstool (hell-diver) Tcīgibis told the Crawfish that their enemy was dead; the Cancers gathered, began to pull rot from the Otter's ass; he laughed, jumped up, killed everyone but one , who was at a distance; Toadstool was jealous of his wife for his brother Gagara; while he was sleeping, he put a hot iron down his throat; collected blood in a bubble, put it under his clothes; he was told that Loon had been killed; he pierced a blood bubble, supposedly killing himself; left after diving into the water; if he had been caught up, there would be no greaves now]: Skinner 1911:95-96; (cf. sauk [when Wísakä saw the turkeys, lay down with his penis out; the turkeys were going to see what their older brother was doing; he jumped up, grabbed the turkey, rubbed its head against his penis; since then, turkeys are like a small red penis on their heads]: Skinner 1928, No. 6:149).

Northeast. Seneca [The raccoon was smeared with rotten wood decay, pretended to be dead; Cancers gathered around his enemy; one put his hand in the Raccoon's mouth, shouted that he was alive; the other Cancer; but the leader does not believe ; when the third, the Raccoon jumped up, killed the crayfish, only one is alive; he is on a hill; crawls asking the trees for their names; Black Oak, Butter Walnut, Poplar; each species is increasingly hygrophilous; finally, Willow ; Cancer drank water, went down to the bottom]: Curtin 2001:241-246.

Southeast USA. Chirokee: Kilpatrick, Kilpatrick 1964 [Opossum pretends to be dead, Rabbit invites Turkeys to dance around him, Opossum grabs one Turkey]: 34-35; Mooney 1900, No. 19 [Rabbit asks Let him go of the Wild Cat, promises to help get Turkeys for it; The cat pretends to be dead, Kgo let go, promises to help get Turkeys for it; like; the leader returns home with a few survivors smears his rotten wood, calls the Turkeys, invites them to dance around a dead enemy; at the signal of the Rabbit, the Cat jumps up, grabs the Turkey]: 269-270; screams [Tuggle collection; like a teal; furious Turkeys later bite off Rabbit's tail, since then its tail is short; in another version, Raccoon does the same trick with Deer, instead of Wild Cat, Puma]: Mooney 1900:449.

California. Chumash [Coyote has sixteen sons; he eats all supplies alone, gets sick from overeating; sends his sons one by one to announce his imminent death; the youngest announces him as" Loving"; Coyote is satisfied; geese come to mourn him; Coyote says that this requires lowering their heads; hits them with a club; only half are saved; Coyote eats all the meat alone again; his Frog wife closes water sources; Coyote goes up the gorge to look for water; Frog suddenly lets water out; Coyote draws a zigzag trying to escape (so Mission Creek winds), but is carried away by water into the sea; turns into laxux fish]: Blackburn 1975, #31:204-207

The Great Southwest. Navajo: Haile 1984, No. 1 [Coyote wants it to rain, to pour more and more; goes with the flow to a colony of gophers, lies there as if dead; tells Skunk to tell the Gophers that their enemy is their enemy dead; Gophers dance around an imaginary dead Coyote; Skunk tells them to look up, lets a stream of his urine up, it gets into the eyes of the Gophers; the Coyote jumps up, hits them with a club; Skunk and Coyote bake gophers, the Coyote offers to race; while the Coyote runs around the mountain, the Skunk hides in the hole, returns, takes the fat gophers to the top of the cliff, eats them; the Coyote sheds only bones, heads, skins]: 27-30; Parsons 1923b, No. 8 [The Coyote goes, wants water to carry him; pretends to be dead, tells the Wild Cat to tell the Gophers that their enemy is dead; Gophers, Rabbits dance around, Coyote jumps up , together with the Cat, kills many with a stick; bakes; invites the Cat to race; while the Coyote is running, the Cat returns, takes the fattest gophers, takes them to the tree, eats]: 371-372; Western Apaches (White Mountain) [Coyote goes, wants the sand under his feet to be wet; to walk on water, up to his neck in water; etc., water brings him to his homes; he pretends to be dead, he fills grass in all holes bodies; Rabbit girls find him, call all small animals and birds to dance on the occasion of the death of the enemy; the Skunk shouts to the Coyote that it is time to grab the prey; the Coyote can only drive one Rabbit into the hole; he promises to make a fire before entering from the branches of the bush, from the grass; each time the Rabbit replies that he eats it; pretends to be afraid of resin; while the Coyote goes for resin, the Rabbit runs away, leaving him to answer moccasins for himself; Coyote finds only burnt perforated moccasins in the hole; rushes at a stuffed rabbit full of sand; next time he sees the real one, but thinks he is also out of the sand; rushes at Another rabbit, attacks the yucca thorns; the bird asks her to warm it, the Coyote holds it under her arm, she flies away; the grasshopper advises taking it to a crack in the ground, then eat it, runs away]: Goodwin 1994, No. 43 : 168-171; hicarilla [a coyote killed a deer, drags a carcass, squirrels laugh at him; he pretends to feel bad that he is dead; squirrels throw bumps and pebbles at him, then go down to dance around; coyote jumps up, grabs one, others run away]: Opler 1994, No. 38:307-308; Western Ceres (Laguna): Espinosa 1936a, No. 10 [Coyote agrees with Skunk that he will pretend to be dead and he will call Gophers; gophers began to dance around the dead, the Coyote jumped up, killed many; offered to race, whoever won would eat everything; while the Coyote was running, the Skunk ran around the mountain, came back, took the fattest to rock; then tears, Coyote called him to look for a cornfield; Skunk wrote in his mouth, Coyote died]: 83; Parsons 1918, No. 11 [after agreeing with the Coyote, the Rabbit tells the Gophers that he is dead; hand in hand, Gophers surround the imaginary dead and sing; the Coyote kills them by throwing sand into their eyes; agrees with the Rabbit that the winner of the run will get the fattest; while the Coyote is running, the Rabbit hides in a hole , comes back, picks up the best carcasses, eats under a rock; Coyote wants to kill him, asks how to get down; Rabbit calls to the crevice, Coyote falls, breaks]: 230-231; oriental ceres (Paguacate) [the fox wanted it to rain, the flood would begin; he pretended to be dead, the gophers began to dance around him, he grabbed them, began to bake them; while they were preparing, he decided to tie the bark to the tail, set it on fire and run; He still runs, forgetting about food; that's why foxes run away from the fire]: Espinosa 1936a, No. 15:86-87.

(Wed. Bolivia - Guaporé. Guaraçu [Cayman agrees to transport the Monkey across the river; she dabbles with her hand over his eyes; screams that his pimples are nauseous; Cayman is about to throw it into the water , she says she was joking; she grabs branches, bringing down a stream of abuse from the tree; he promises the Vultures to give the Monkey's body to eat if they help him, saying that Cayman is dead; The monkey notices that Cayman's tail is moving; throws three stones into its mouth, he swallows them; this later dies, is eaten by the Vultures; the monkey cries, she really just wanted to joke]: Riester 1977, No. 65:279, 316-317).

(Wed. The Southern Cone. {European borrowing, at least "a fox leads a ram to an aged lion" and "the fox does not get what was promised"}. Araucans [lion (puma?) old, the fox promises to help; brings a ram, but it smells; then tells the lion to pretend to be dead; offers other animals to jump on it, the lion kills the guanaco; gives the fox only giblets instead promised meat]: Kuramochi 1991:214-216).