Ancient Hawaiian folklore includes many mythical and spiritual beings. Myths about such groups of ‘people’ often explain the universal and local beginnings of a particular culture, becoming part of that society’s cosmology. Here are two examples of Hawaiian mythical people:
Menehune (Small People)Menehune are small in stature and almost dwarf-like. These people were believed to dwell out of sight – away from people - deep in the woods and in hidden valleys. These people were said to be great craftsman and could build almost anything with their hands. Some of the structures that were attributed to their handy-work include temples, roads, fishponds and even homes. Folk legend has it that they lived in Hawaii before the settlers arrived to claim the land and came to be referred to as lowly people.
Night marchers (Warrior Ghosts)Nightmarchers are known as the spirits of the ancient Hawaiian warriors. They are believed to march together at night to sacred burial sites. These warriors are said to march only after the sunsets and are not seen in daylight. However, careful listening will make it possible to hear the chanting and sound of their marching as they make their way to burial sites of significance.
Folk legend says you should never look directly at a night marcher because this could end in your immediate death. It is best to lie face down on the ground when you hear them to ensure that you are not seen.Want to learn more about the folklore of little people?