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In
mythology Myth is a folklore genre Folklore is the expressive body of culture shared by a particular group of people; it encompasses the tradition A tradition is a belief A belief is an Attitude (psychology), attitude that something is the ca ...

mythology
and the study of
folklore Folklore is the expressive body of culture shared by a particular group of people; it encompasses the tradition A tradition is a belief A belief is an attitude Attitude may refer to: Philosophy and psychology * Attitude (psycholog ...

folklore
and
religion Religion is a social Social organisms, including humans, live collectively in interacting populations. This interaction is considered social whether they are aware of it or not, and whether the exchange is voluntary/involuntary. Etymology ...

religion
, a trickster is a character in a story (
god In monotheistic Monotheism is the belief A belief is an attitude Attitude may refer to: Philosophy and psychology * Attitude (psychology) In psychology Psychology is the science of mind and behavior. Psychology includes the ...
,
goddess A goddess is a female Female (symbol: ♀) is the sex Sex is either of two divisions, typically male Male (♂) is the sex of an organism that produces the gamete known as sperm. A male gamete can fuse with a larger female gamete, ...

goddess
, spirit,
human Humans (''Homo sapiens'') are the most abundant and widespread species In biology, a species is the basic unit of biological classification, classification and a taxonomic rank of an organism, as well as a unit of biodiversity. A speci ...

human
or anthropomorphisation) who exhibits a great degree of
intellect In the study of the human mind, intellect refers to, describes, and identifies the ability of the human mind to reach correct conclusions about what is true True most commonly refers to truth Truth is the property of being in accord with f ...

intellect
or secret knowledge and uses it to play tricks or otherwise disobey normal rules and defy conventional behavior.


Mythology

Tricksters, as
archetypal The concept of an archetype (; from Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its popu ...
characters, appear in the myths of many different cultures.
Lewis Hyde Lewis Hyde (born 1945) is a scholar, essayist, translator, cultural critic and writer whose scholarly work focuses on the nature of imagination Imagination is the ability to produce and simulate novel objects, sensations, and ideas in the mind ...
describes the trickster as a "boundary-crosser".Hyde, Lewis. ''Trickster Makes This World: Mischief, Myth, and Art''. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1998. The trickster crosses and often breaks both physical and societal rules: Tricksters "violate principles of social and natural order, playfully disrupting normal life and then re-establishing it on a new basis." Often, this bending or breaking of rules takes the form of tricks or thievery. Tricksters can be
cunning Cunning may refer to: * Cunning (owarai), a Japanese comedy group * Cunning folk, a type of folk magic user * Cunning (surname), a list of people with Cunning as a surname See also

* Cunningham * * * Sneak (disambiguation) * Sly (disambigu ...
or foolish or both. The trickster openly questions, disrupts or mocks authority. Many cultures have tales of the trickster, a crafty being who uses tricks to get food, steal precious possessions, or simply cause mischief. In some Greek myths
Hermes Hermes (; grc-gre, Ἑρμῆς) is an Olympian deity in ancient Greek religion and Greek mythology, mythology. Hermes is considered the herald of the gods. He is also considered the protector of human heralds, travellers, thieves, mercha ...

Hermes
plays the trickster. He is the patron of thieves and the inventor of lying, a gift he passed on to
Autolycus In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myth Myth is a folklore genre Folklore is the expressive body of culture shared by a particular group of people; it encompasses the tradition A tradition is a belief A belief ...
, who in turn passed it on to
Odysseus Odysseus ( ; grc-gre, Ὀδυσσεύς, Ὀδυσεύς, OdysseúsOdyseús, ), also known by the Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken ...

Odysseus
. In Slavic folktales, the trickster and the
culture hero A culture hero is a mythological Myth is a consisting of s that play a fundamental role in a society, such as foundational tales or s. The main characters in myths are usually non-humans, such as , s, and other figures., and , eds. 2003. "M ...
are often combined. Frequently the trickster figure exhibits gender and
form Form is the shape A shape or figure is the form of an object or its external boundary, outline, or external Surface (mathematics), surface, as opposed to other properties such as color, Surface texture, texture, or material type. A plane shap ...
variability. In
Norse mythology Norse or Scandinavian mythology is the body of myths Myth is a folklore genre Folklore is the expressive body of culture shared by a particular group of people; it encompasses the traditions common to that culture, subculture or group. ...
the mischief-maker is
Loki Loki (, often Anglicized as ) is a god In monotheism, monotheistic thought, God is conceived of as the supreme being, creator deity, creator, and principal object of Faith#Religious views, faith.Richard Swinburne, Swinburne, R.G. "God" in Te ...

Loki
, who is also a shape shifter. Loki also exhibits gender variability, in one case even becoming pregnant. He becomes a mare who later gives birth to Odin's eight-legged horse
Sleipnir In Norse mythology Norse or Scandinavian mythology is the body of myths Myth is a folklore genre Folklore is the expressive body of culture shared by a particular group of people; it encompasses the traditions common to that culture, ...
. In a wide variety of African-language communities, the rabbit, or hare, is the trickster. In West Africa (and thence into the Caribbean via the slave trade), the spider (
Anansi Anansi ( literally means ''spider'') is an AkanAkan may refer to: People and languages *Akan people The Akan () are a meta-ethnicity living in the countries of present-day Ghana and Ivory Coast. The Akan language (also known as ''Twi/Fa ...
) is often the trickster.


Archetype

The trickster or
clown A clown is a person who wears a unique makeup-face and flamboyant costume, performing comedy Comedy (from the el, κωμῳδία, ''kōmōdía'') is a genre of fiction that consists of discourses or works intended to be humor Hum ...

clown
is an example of a
Jungian archetype Jungian archetypes are defined as universal, primal symbols and images that derive from the collective unconscious, as proposed by Carl Jung. They are the psychic counterpart of instinct. It is described as a kind of innate unspecific knowledge, ...
.


Trickster or clown

The ''trickster'' is a term used for a non performing 'trick maker'; they may have many motives behind their intention but those motives are not in public view largely. They are internal to the character or person. The
clown A clown is a person who wears a unique makeup-face and flamboyant costume, performing comedy Comedy (from the el, κωμῳδία, ''kōmōdía'') is a genre of fiction that consists of discourses or works intended to be humor Hum ...

clown
on the other hand is a
persona A persona (plural personae or personas), depending on the context, can refer to either the public image of one's personality, or the social role that one adopts, or a fictional character Character(s) may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and me ...

persona
of a performer who displays their actions in public intentionally for an audience.


In Native American tradition

While the trickster crosses various cultural traditions, there are significant differences between tricksters in the traditions of different parts of the world:
Many native traditions held
clown A clown is a person who wears a unique makeup-face and flamboyant costume, performing comedy Comedy (from the el, κωμῳδία, ''kōmōdía'') is a genre of fiction that consists of discourses or works intended to be humor Hum ...

clown
s and tricksters as essential to any contact with the
sacred Sacred describes something that is dedicated or set apart for the service or worship of a deity; is considered worthy of spiritual respect or devotion; or inspires awe or Reverence (emotion), reverence among believers. The property is often as ...

sacred
. People could not pray until they had laughed, because
laughter Laughter is a pleasant physical reaction consisting usually of rhythmical, often audible contractions of the diaphragm Diaphragm may refer to: * Diaphragm (anatomy) or thoracic diaphragm, a thin sheet of muscle between the thorax and the abdomen ...

laughter
opens and frees from rigid preconception. Humans had to have tricksters within the most sacred
ceremonies A ceremony (, ) is a unified ritual A ritual is a sequence of activities involving gestures, words, actions, or objects, performed according to a set sequence. Rituals may be prescribed by the traditions of a community, including a religious ...
for fear that they forget the sacred comes through upset, reversal, surprise. The trickster in most native traditions is essential to creation, to birth.
Native American tricksters should not be confused with the European fictional
picaro The picaresque novel (: ''picaresca'', from ''pícaro'', for "" or "rascal") is a genre of . It depicts the s of a roguish, but "appealing hero", usually of low , who lives by his wits in a corrupt society. Picaresque novels typically adopt a ...

picaro
. One of the most important distinctions is that "we can see in the Native American trickster an openness to life's multiplicity and paradoxes largely missing in the modern Euro-American moral tradition". In some stories the Native American trickster is foolish and other times wise. He can be a hero in one tale and a villain in the next. In many Native American and First Nations mythologies, the Coyote spirit (
Southwestern United States The Southwestern United States, also known as the American Southwest or simply the Southwest, is a geographic and cultural list of regions of the United States, region of the United States that generally includes Arizona, New Mexico, and adjacen ...
) or Raven spirit (
Pacific Northwest The Pacific Northwest (PNW) is a geographic region in western North America bounded by its coastal waters of the Pacific Ocean to the west and, loosely, by the Rocky Mountains to the east. Though no official boundary exists, the most common co ...
) stole fire from the gods (
star A star is an astronomical object consisting of a luminous spheroid of plasma Plasma or plasm may refer to: Science * Plasma (physics), one of the four fundamental states of matter * Plasma (mineral) or heliotrope, a mineral aggregate * Quark ...

star
s,
moon The Moon is Earth's only natural satellite. At about one-quarter the diameter of Earth (comparable to the width of Australia (continent), Australia), it is the largest natural satellite in the Solar System relative to the size of its plane ...

moon
, and/or
sun The Sun is the star A star is an astronomical object consisting of a luminous spheroid of plasma (physics), plasma held together by its own gravity. The List of nearest stars and brown dwarfs, nearest star to Earth is the Sun. Many othe ...

sun
). Both are usually seen as jokesters and pranksters. In Native American creation stories, when Coyote teaches humans how to catch salmon, he makes the first fish weir out of logs and branches. Wakdjunga in Winnebago mythology is an example of the trickster archetype.


Coyote

The Coyote mythos is one of the most popular among western Native American cultures, especially among
indigenous peoples of California The indigenous peoples of California (known as Native Californians) are the indigenous inhabitants who have lived or currently live in the geographic area within the current boundaries of California California is a state State may ref ...
and the Great Basin. According to
Crow A crow is a bird of the genus ''Corvus ''Corvus'' is a widely distributed genus Genus /ˈdʒiː.nəs/ (plural genera /ˈdʒen.ər.ə/) is a taxonomic rank used in the biological classification of extant taxon, living and fossil organisms ...
(and other Plains) tradition, Old Man Coyote impersonates the Creator: "Old Man Coyote took up a handful of mud and out of it made people". He also bestowed names on buffalo, deer, elk, antelopes, and bear. According to A. Hultkranz, the impersonation of Coyote as Creator is a result of a taboo, a mythic substitute to the religious notion of the Great Spirit whose name was too dangerous and/or sacred to use apart from at special ceremonies. In Chelan myths, Coyote belongs to the animal people but he is at the same time "a power just like the Creator, the head of all the creatures." while still being a subject of the Creator who can punish him or remove his powers. In the Pacific Northwest tradition, Coyote is mostly mentioned as a messenger, or minor power. As the culture hero, Coyote appears in various mythic traditions, but generally with the same magical powers of transformation, resurrection, and "medicine". He is engaged in changing the ways of rivers, creating new landscapes and getting sacred things for people. Of mention is the tradition of Coyote fighting against monsters. According to Wasco tradition, Coyote was the hero to fight and kill
Thunderbird Thunderbird or Thunderbirds may refer to: * Thunderbird (mythology), a legendary creature in certain North American indigenous peoples' history and culture Arts, entertainment and media Fictional characters * Thunderbird (John Proudstar), a Marvel ...
, the killer of people, but he could do that not because of his personal power, but due to the help of the Spirit Chief. In some stories,
Multnomah Falls Multnomah Falls is a waterfall located on Multnomah Creek in the Columbia River Gorge, east of Troutdale, Oregon, Troutdale, between Corbett, Oregon, Corbett and Dodson, Oregon, Dodson, Oregon, United States. The waterfall is accessible from the H ...

Multnomah Falls
came to be by Coyote's efforts; in others, it is done by Raven. More often than not Coyote is a trickster, but always different. In some stories, he is a noble trickster: "Coyote takes water from the Frog people... because it is not right that one people have all the water." In others, he is malicious: "Coyote determined to bring harm to Duck. He took Duck's wife and children, whom he treated badly."


In oral stories

*
Abenaki mythology The Abenaki people The Abenaki (Abnaki, Abinaki, ''Alnôbak'') are a Native Americans in the United States, Native American Tribe (Native American), tribe and First Nations, First Nation. They are one of the Algonquian languages, Algonquian- ...
: Azeban *
African mythology African(s) may refer to: * Anything from or pertaining to the continent of Africa: ** People who are native to Africa, descendants of natives of Africa, or individuals who trace their ancestry to indigenous inhabitants of Africa *** Ethnic groups ...
:
Ekwensu Ekwensu is a trickster In mythology Myth is a folklore genre Folklore is the expressive body of culture shared by a particular group of people; it encompasses the tradition A tradition is a belief A belief is an Attitude (psych ...
*Afro-Cuban mythology: Eleggua, Eshu *
Akan mythology Akan religion comprises the traditional beliefs and religious practices of the Akan people The Akan () are a meta-ethnicity living in the countries of present-day Ghana and Ivory Coast. The Akan language (also known as ''Twi/Fante'') are a ...
: Kwaku Ananse *
American folklore American folklore encompasses the folklores that have evolved in the present-day United States since Europeans arrived in the 16th century. While it contains much in the way of Native American tradition, it is not wholly identical to the tribal b ...
:
Brer Rabbit Br'er Rabbit (Brother Rabbit), also spelled Bre'r Rabbit or Brer Rabbit, is a central figure in an oral tradition passed down by African-Americans African Americans (also referred to as Black Americans or Afro-Americans) are an ethnic group ...
(or Compere Lapin) and Aunt Nancy, a corruption of Anansi (Anansee) *
Arabian mythology Religion in pre-Islamic Arabia included indigenous Arabian polytheism, ancient Semitic religions (religions predating the Abrahamic religions The Abrahamic religions, also referred to collectively as the world of Abrahamism and Semitic r ...
:
Juha Juha is a masculine given name of Finnish Finnish may refer to: * Something or someone from, or related to Finland * Finnish culture * Finnish people or Finns, the primary ethnic group in Finland * Finnish language, the national language of the Fin ...
, * Ashanti folklore:
Anansi Anansi ( literally means ''spider'') is an AkanAkan may refer to: People and languages *Akan people The Akan () are a meta-ethnicity living in the countries of present-day Ghana and Ivory Coast. The Akan language (also known as ''Twi/Fa ...
*
Australian Aboriginal mythology Australian Aboriginal religion and mythology is the sacred spirituality represented in the stories performed by Aboriginal Australians Aboriginal Australians are the various Indigenous peoples Indigenous peoples, also referred to ...
: Bamapana,
Crow A crow is a bird of the genus ''Corvus ''Corvus'' is a widely distributed genus Genus /ˈdʒiː.nəs/ (plural genera /ˈdʒen.ər.ə/) is a taxonomic rank used in the biological classification of extant taxon, living and fossil organisms ...
*
Aztec mythology Aztec mythology is the body or collection of myths of Aztec The Aztecs () were a Mesoamerican culture that flourished in central Mexico in the post-classic period from 1300 to 1521. The Aztec peoples included different Indigenous peoples of M ...
: *
Babylonian mythology Babylonian religion is the religious practice of Babylonia. Babylonian mythology was greatly influenced by their Sumerian religion, Sumerian counterparts and was written on clay tablets inscribed with the cuneiform script derived from Sumerian c ...
:
Lilith Lilith (; he, Wiktionary:לילית, לִילִית, Līlīṯ) is a demonic figure in Jewish mythology, Judaic mythology, supposedly the primordial she-demon and alternatively first wife of Adam. She is presumed to be mentioned in Biblical He ...
*
Bantu Bantu may refer to: *Bantu languages, constitute the largest sub-branch of the Niger–Congo languages *Bantu peoples, over 400 peoples of Africa speaking a Bantu language *Afro-textured hair#Styling, Bantu knots, a type of African hairstyle *Blac ...
mythology:
Hare Hares and jackrabbits are Leporidae, leporids belonging to the genus ''Lepus''. Hares are classified in the same Family (biology), family as rabbits. They have similar herbivorous diets, but are generally larger in size than rabbits, have proport ...
(Tsuro or Kalulu) *
Basque mythology The mythology Myth is a folklore genre Folklore is the expressive body of culture shared by a particular group of people; it encompasses the tradition A tradition is a belief A belief is an Attitude (psychology), attitude that ...
:
San Martin Txiki San Martin Txiki ("Little Saint Martin") is the Trickster figure from Basque mythology. "Txiki" (pronounced "cheeky") means "little" in an affectionate sense. San Martin is often called simply "Martintxiki" or "Samartitxiki". He stole the secrets o ...
*Belgian mythology: Lange Wapper *
Brazilian folklore Brazilian mythology is the subset of Brazilian folklore with cultural elements of diverse origin found in Brazil, comprising folk tales, traditions, characters and beliefs regarding places, peoples, and entities. The category was originally restri ...
:
Saci Studio Arts College International (SACI), Florence Florence ( ; it, Firenze ) is a city in Central-Northern Italy Italy ( it, Italia ), officially the Italian Republic ( it, Repubblica Italiana, links=no ), is a country consisting of ...
,
Curupira The ''Curupira'' () is a mythological creature of Brazilian folklore. This creature blends many features of West African and European fairies but was usually regarded as a demonic figure. The name comes from the Tupi language ''kuru'pir'', meanin ...

Curupira
*
Bulgarian Bulgarian may refer to: * Something of, from, or related to the country of Bulgaria * Bulgarians, a South Slavic ethnic group * Bulgarian language, a Slavic language * Bulgarian alphabet * A citizen of Bulgaria, see Demographics of Bulgaria * Bulg ...
/ Macedonian folklore: Hitar Petar (Itar Pejo) *
Caribbean folklore Many elements of Caribbean folklore (the orally transmitted beliefs, myths, tales, and practices of a group of people) are African in origin, given that slaves Slavery and enslavement are both the state and the condition of being a slave, who ...
:
Anansi Anansi ( literally means ''spider'') is an AkanAkan may refer to: People and languages *Akan people The Akan () are a meta-ethnicity living in the countries of present-day Ghana and Ivory Coast. The Akan language (also known as ''Twi/Fa ...
*
Celtic mythology Celtic is the mythology of Celtic polytheism, the religion of the Iron Age Celts.Cunliffe, Barry, (1997) ''The Ancient Celts''. Oxford, Oxford University Press , pp. 183 (religion), 202, 204–8. Like other Iron Age Europeans, the early Celts ...
:
Fairy A fairy (also ''fay'', ''fae'', ''fey'', ''fair folk'', or ''faerie'') is a type of mythical Myth is a folklore genre Folklore is the expressive body of culture shared by a particular group of people; it encompasses the traditions com ...

Fairy
, Puck, puca *
Chinese mythology Chinese mythology () is mythology Myth is a folklore genre Folklore is the expressive body of culture shared by a particular group of people; it encompasses the traditions common to that culture, subculture or group. This includes oral ...
:
Huli jing Huli jing () are Chinese mythological creatures usually capable of shapeshifting In , and , shapeshifting is the to physically transform oneself through an inherently ability, divine intervention, ic manipulation, , s or having inh ...
(Fox spirit),
Nezha Nezha ( 哪吒) is a protection deity in Chinese folk religion Chinese folk religion, also known as Chinese popular religion, is a general term covering a range of traditional religious practices of Han Chinese The Han Chinese ...
,
Red Boy Red Boy (; vi, Hồng Hài Nhi, ja, Kōgaiji) was a character featured in the 16th century novel ''Journey to the West ''Journey to the West'' () is a Chinese novel published in the 16th century during the Ming dynasty and attributed ...
,
Sun Wukong The Monkey King, known as Sun Wukong (孫悟空/孙悟空) in Mandarin Chinese Mandarin (; ) is a group of Sinitic languages, Sinitic (Chinese) languages natively spoken across most of northern and southwestern China. The group inclu ...

Sun Wukong
(Monkey King) *
Cree The Cree ( cr, Néhinaw, script=Latn, , etc.; french: link=no, Cri) are a North American Indigenous people. They live primarily in Canada Canada is a country in the northern part of North America. Its Provinces and territories of Can ...

Cree
mythology:
Wisakedjak Wisakedjak (''Wìsakedjàk'' in Algonquin language, Algonquin, ''Wīsahkēcāhk(w)'' in Cree and ''Wiisagejaak'' in Oji-Cree language, Oji-cree) is the Crane (bird), Crane ''Manitou'' found in northern Algonquian peoples, Algonquian and Dene story ...
* Crow mythology: Awakkule, Mannegishi *
Dutch Dutch commonly refers to: * Something of, from, or related to the Netherlands * Dutch people () * Dutch language () *Dutch language , spoken in Belgium (also referred as ''flemish'') Dutch may also refer to:" Castle * Dutch Castle Places * ...

Dutch
folklore: Reynaert de Vos,
Tijl Uilenspiegel Till Eulenspiegel (; nds, Dyl Ulenspegel ) is the protagonist of a German chapbook A chapbook is a small publication of up to about 40 pages, sometimes bound with a saddle stitch. In early modern Europe a chapbook was a type of printed stre ...

Tijl Uilenspiegel
*
Egyptian mythology Egyptian mythology is the collection of myths from ancient Egypt, which describe the actions of the Egyptian pantheon, Egyptian gods as a means of understanding the world around them. The beliefs that these myths express are an important part ...
: Set,
Isis Isis (; ''Ēse''; ; Meroitic language, Meroitic: ''Wos'' 'a''or ''Wusa'') was a major ancient Egyptian deities, goddess in ancient Egyptian religion whose worship spread throughout the Greco-Roman world. Isis was first mentioned in the Ol ...

Isis
*
English folklore English folklore consists of the myths Myth is a folklore genre Folklore is the expressive body of culture shared by a particular group of people; it encompasses the tradition A tradition is a belief A belief is an Attitude (p ...
:
Robin Hood Robin Hood is a legendary hero File:Wilhelm Tell Denkmal Altdorf um 1900.jpeg, upWilliam Tell, a popular folk hero of Switzerland. A hero (heroine in its feminine form) is a real person or a main fictional character who, in the face ...

Robin Hood
, Puck, Brownies *
Fiji Fiji ( ; fj, Viti, ; hif, फ़िजी, ''Fijī''), officially the Republic of Fiji, is an island country in Melanesia, part of Oceania in the South Pacific Ocean. It lies about northeast of New Zealand. Fiji consists of an archipelago ...

Fiji
an mythology: Daucina *
French French (french: français(e), link=no) may refer to: * Something of, from, or related to France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a transcontinental country This is a list of co ...

French
folklore: Renart the Fox *
German folklore German folklore is the Folklore, folk tradition which has developed in Germany over a number of centuries. Characteristics It shares many characteristics with Scandinavian folklore and English folklore due to their origins in a common German ...
: Reineke Fuchs, the
Pied Piper The Pied Piper of Hamelin (german: der Rattenfänger von Hameln, also known as the Pan Piper or the Rat-Catcher of Hamelin) is the title character of a legend from the town of Hamelin (Hameln), Lower Saxony, Germany. The legend dates back to ...
,
Till Eulenspiegel Till Eulenspiegel (; nds, Dyl Ulenspegel ) is the protagonist of a German chapbook published in 1515 (a first edition of c. 1510/12 is preserved fragmentarily) with a possible background in earlier Middle Low German German folklore, folklore. E ...

Till Eulenspiegel
*
Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myth Myth is a folklore genre Folklore is the expressive body of culture shared by a particular group of people; it encompasses the tradition A tradition is a belief A belief is an Attitude (psyc ...
: Eris,
Prometheus In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myth Myth is a folklore genre Folklore is the expressive body of culture shared by a particular group of people; it encompasses the tradition A tradition is a belief A be ...

Prometheus
,
Hermes Hermes (; grc-gre, Ἑρμῆς) is an Olympian deity in ancient Greek religion and Greek mythology, mythology. Hermes is considered the herald of the gods. He is also considered the protector of human heralds, travellers, thieves, mercha ...

Hermes
,
Odysseus Odysseus ( ; grc-gre, Ὀδυσσεύς, Ὀδυσεύς, OdysseúsOdyseús, ), also known by the Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken ...

Odysseus
,
Sisyphus In Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myths originally told by the Ancient Greece, ancient Greeks, and a genre of Ancient Greek folklore. These stories concern the Cosmogony, origin and Cosmology#Metaphysical cosmology, nature o ...

Sisyphus
,
Dolos A dolos (plural: dolosse) is a reinforced concrete Reinforced concrete (RC), also called reinforced cement concrete (RCC), is a composite material A composite material (also called a composition material or shortened to composite, which i ...
* Haitian folklore:
Anansi Anansi ( literally means ''spider'') is an AkanAkan may refer to: People and languages *Akan people The Akan () are a meta-ethnicity living in the countries of present-day Ghana and Ivory Coast. The Akan language (also known as ''Twi/Fa ...
, Ti Malice *
Hawaiian mythology Hawaiian religion encompasses the indigenous religious beliefs and practices of native Hawaiians Native Hawaiians, or simply Hawaiians ( haw, kānaka ʻōiwi, , and ), are the of the . The traditional name of the Hawaiian people is ''Kā ...
:
Kaulu In Hawaiian mythology, Kaulu is a trickster god who killed Haumea (mythology), goddess Haumea at Niuhelewai, by catching her in a net obtained from Makali’i. He then killed Lonokaeho, also called Piokeanuenue, Alii, king of Ko'olau, by singing a ...
,
Kupua In Hawaiian mythology Hawaiian religion encompasses the indigenous religious beliefs and practices of native Hawaiians Native Hawaiians, or simply Hawaiians ( haw, kānaka ʻōiwi, , and ), are the of the . The traditional name of the ...
*
Hindu mythology Hindu mythology is a body of myths found in Hindu texts such as the Vedas, Vedic literature, Sanskrit epics, epics like ''Mahabharata'' and ''Ramayana'', the Puranas, and regional literature like the Tamil language, Tamil ''Periya Puranam'' an ...
: Baby
Krishna Krishna (, ; sa, कृष्ण, ) is a major deity A deity or god is a supernatural being considered divinity, divine or sacred. The ''Oxford Dictionary of English'' defines deity as a God (male deity), god or goddess (in a polythei ...

Krishna
(stealing butter),
Narada Narada ( sa, नारद, ), or Narad Muni, is a god-sage, famous in Hindu Hindus (; ) are persons who regard themselves as culturally, ethnically, or religiously adhering to aspects of Hinduism Hinduism () is an Indian r ...

Narada
,
Mohini Mohini (Sanskrit Sanskrit (; attributively , ; nominalization, nominally , , ) is a classical language of South Asia that belongs to the Indo-Aryan languages, Indo-Aryan branch of the Indo-European languages. It arose in South Asia after ...
,
Hanuman Hanuman (; sa, हनुमान्, ) is a Hindu god and divine ''vanara'' (monkey) companion of the god Rama. Hanuman is one of the central characters of the Hindu epic ''Ramayana''. He is an ardent devotee of Rama and one of the chiranji ...

Hanuman
(shapeshifting and teasing sages). *
Hopi The Hopi are a Native Americans in the United States, Native American tribe who primarily live on the Hopi Reservation in northeastern Arizona. As of the United States Census, 2010, 2010 census, there are 19,338 Hopi in the United States. The Ho ...
and
Zuni mythology Zuni mythology is the oral history, cosmology, and religion of the Zuni people. The Zuni are a Pueblo people located in New Mexico. Their religion is integrated into their daily lives and respects ancestors, nature, and animals.
:
Kokopelli Kokopelli () is a fertility deity A fertility deity is a god or goddess associated with fertility Fertility is the quality of being able to produce children. As a measure, the fertility rate is the average number of children that a woman ha ...

Kokopelli
*
Igbo mythology Ọdịnala (), also Ọdịnanị, Ọdịlalị or Ọdịlala, comprises the traditional religious practices and cultural beliefs of the Igbo people of South East (Nigeria), south east Nigeria.Afulezy, Uj"On Odinani, the Igbo Religion", ''N ...
: Mbeku *Indonesian folklore: Kantjil, or kancil in modern orthography (spelling). *Inuit mythology: Amaguq *Ireland, Irish folklore: Leprechauns, Briccriu *Islamic mythology: Iblis, Khidr, Nasreddin *Italian folklore: Giufà (Sicily), Pulcinella (Naples) *Japanese mythology: Kitsune, Susanoo, Kappa (mythical creature), Kappa, Bake-danuki, Hare of Inaba *Jewish folklore: Hershele Ostropoler (Ashkenazi), Joha (Sephardic) *Kazakh folklore: Aldar kose *Kiowa folklore: Saynday *Kongo religion, Kongo mythology: Moni-Mambu *Korean folklore: Kumiho, Dokkaebi *Lakota mythology: Iktomi, Heyoka *Latin American folklore, Latin American and Spanish folklore: Pedro Urdemales (Pedro Malasartes in Portuguese) *Levantine mythology: Yaw (god), Yaw *Māori mythology: Māui (Māori_mythology), Māui *Mayan mythology: Maya Hero Twins, Kisin *Micronesian mythology: Olifat *Miwok mythology: Coyote (mythology), Coyote *Nigerian mythology: Agadzagadza *
Norse mythology Norse or Scandinavian mythology is the body of myths Myth is a folklore genre Folklore is the expressive body of culture shared by a particular group of people; it encompasses the traditions common to that culture, subculture or group. ...
:
Loki Loki (, often Anglicized as ) is a god In monotheism, monotheistic thought, God is conceived of as the supreme being, creator deity, creator, and principal object of Faith#Religious views, faith.Richard Swinburne, Swinburne, R.G. "God" in Te ...

Loki
*Norwegian people, Norwegian mythology: Askeladden, Espen Askeladd *Nart sagas, Northwest Caucasian mythology: Nart sagas, Sosruko *Ohlone mythology: Coyote (mythology), Coyote *Ojibwe, Ojibwe mythology: Nanabozho *Philippine mythology: Nuno sa Punso, Tikbalang, Philippine mouse-deer#In culture, Pilandok *Polynesian mythology: Maui (mythology), Maui *Pomo mythology: Coyote (mythology), Coyote *Pueblos dancing: Koshares *Romanian mythology: Păcală *Russian folklore: Ivan the Fool *San religion, San Folklore: ǀKaggen *Slavic mythology: Veles (god), Veles *Spanish mythology: Don Juan, The Trickster of Seville *Sumerian religion: Enki *Tibetan culture, Tibetan folklore: Akhu Tönpa, *Thai folklore: Sri Thanonchai *Tumbuka mythology: Hare#Folklore and mythology, Kalulu *Ute mythology: Cin-an-ev *Haitian Vodou, Vodou: Papa Legba, Ti Malice, Baron Samedi *Venezuelan folklore: Tío Conejo *Welsh mythology: Gwydion, Taliesin, Morgan Le Fay, Twm Siôn Cati *West African mythology:
Anansi Anansi ( literally means ''spider'') is an AkanAkan may refer to: People and languages *Akan people The Akan () are a meta-ethnicity living in the countries of present-day Ghana and Ivory Coast. The Akan language (also known as ''Twi/Fa ...


In literature and popular culture

In modern literature, the trickster survives as a character archetype, not necessarily supernatural or divine, sometimes no more than a stock character. Often, the trickster is distinct in a story by his acting as a sort of catalyst; his antics are the cause of other characters' discomfiture, but he himself is left untouched. Shakespeare's Puck (A Midsummer Night's Dream), Puck is an example of this. Another once-famous example was the character Froggy the Gremlin on the early USA children's television show "Andy's Gang". A cigar-puffing puppet, Froggy induced the adult humans around him to engage in ridiculous and self-destructive hi-jinks. For example, many European fairy tales have a king who wants to find the best groom for his daughter by ordering several trials. No brave and valiant prince or knight manages to win them, until a poor and simple peasant comes. With the help of his wits and cleverness, instead of fighting, they evade or fool monsters, villains and dangers in unorthodox ways. Against expectations, the most unlikely candidate passes the trials and receives the reward. More modern and obvious examples of the same type include Bugs Bunny in the USA and from Sweden the female hero in the Pippi Longstocking stories.


In Internet and multimedia studies

In online environments, there has been a link between the trickster and Internet trolling. Some have said that a trickster is a type of online community character.Campbell, J., G. Fletcher and A. Greenhill (2009).
Conflict and Identity Shape Shifting in an Online Financial Community
, ''Information Systems Journal'' (19:5), pp. 461–478. .
Anthropologist James Cuffe has called the Chinese internet character Grass Mud Horse (草泥马)a trickster candidate because of its duplicity in meaning. Cuffe argues the Grass Mud Horse serves to highlight the creative potential of the trickster archetype in communicating experiential understanding through symbolic narrative. The Grass Mud Horse relies on the interpretative capacity of storytelling in order to skirt internet censorship while simultaneously commenting on the experience of censorship in China. In this sense Cuffe proposes the Grass Mud Horse trickster as 'a heuristic cultural function to aid the perceiver to re-evaluate their own experiential understanding against that of their communities. By framing itself against and in spite of limits the trickster offers new coordinates by which one can reassess and judges one's own experiences.'


See also

* Grotesque body * Claude Lévi-Strauss's Claude Lévi-Strauss#The structuralist approach to myth, The structuralist approach to myth * Malandro, the traditional Brazilian folklore trickster. * Miwok mythology#Coyote Silver Fox, Miwok Coyote and Silver Fox * Native Americans in the United States


References


Sources

* * * * * * * Datlow, Ellen and Terri Windling. 2009. ''The Coyote Road: Trickster Tales.'' Firebird.
''California on the Eve - California Indians''
Miwok creation story * Joseph Durwin
Coulrophobia & The Trickster
' * *Lori Landay
Madcaps, Screwballs, and Con Women: The Female Trickster in American Culture
' 1998 University of Pennsylvania Press * Paul Radin ''The trickster: a study in American Indian mythology'' (1956) *Allan J. Ryan
The Trickster Shift: Humour and irony in contemporary native art
' 1999 Univ of Washington * Trickster's Way Volume 3, Issue 1 2004 Article 3 "Trickster and the Treks of History". *Tannen, R. S., ''The Female Trickster: PostModern and Post-Jungian Perspectives on Women in Contemporary Culture'', Routledge, 2007


External links


Joel Chandler Harris and the Uncle Remus Collection
{{authority control Tricksters, Mythological archetypes Jungian archetypes Literary archetypes