In today’s journey, we will again begin with a legendary creature on the European continent as we did with the Nordic Norns, but rather than venture south and west into Africa and Asia, we will embark into the freezing climate of the Arctic Circle, and then make our way south into the heartland of the United States. Beginning with the Bucca of English Myth, and then continuing into the Hudson Bay to learn of the dreadful Ikuutayuuq, we will end up with the Sioux Tribe of the Great Plains to learn of how their great hunters were able to defeat Uncegila.
Originating in the 19th Century, the Bucca is said to be a Spirit or Hobgoblin that resides in Cornwall, which is in the south-west England. These Spirits inhabited coastal communities, croplands, and mines in the area, and when something had gone wrong either on land, underground, or out on the sea, the Bucca were generally credited with this mischief. With the hopes of appeasing them, fisherman, harvesters and miners alike began to leave fish or bread for the Bucca. This was surely a fair deal for the Bucca, who received the provisions they required, and in turn caused much fewer problems for the residents of Cornwall. In due time, the threat of the Bucca declined significantly, and people generally only used the idea of the Bucca as a means to frighten children. If you have ever heard of the “Bogey-man” or the phrase “Bugga-boo” meant to frighten another, then you have indeed heard of the Bucca in one form or another.
There remain Neopagan religions that continue to worship the Bucca today – both the Widn, or White Bucca and the Dhu, or dark Bucca; namely the Celtic Pagan religion of ancient Cornwall.
We now travel to a place where darkness can last months; also a place where the great Ikuutayuuq once lurked for human prey. Translating to “One Who Drills” from the Inuit language, Ikuutayuuq is the native name for a monster that had terrorized human targets by literally drilling holes into victims until they lay lifeless. Tourists today that travel near the Hudson Bay may see large pile of rocks, which were put on top of Ikuutayuuq’s victims to prevent the monster from causing further damage. Ikuutayuuq, a female, had a twin brother, who had been seen only twice by the Inuits and their predecessors, though legend has it that they always traveled (and drilled) together.
In a battle amongst Arctic tribes, the Inuits had driven away the first inhabitants of the area, the Tuniit. During their exile from the land, the Tuniits had made claim that they had killed Ikuutayuuq, though her brother was never found. Legend holds that he is waiting for the right time to drill again.
Now we delve into the Native American culture, specifically the Great Sioux tribe. In Myth, Uncegila was a great female serpent, extending to over fifty feet long! This great sea snake would swim in the oceans, but preferred to cruise in the Nebraska River, causing great tidal waves and polluting the waters that the Sioux used for drinking and cleaning. Additionally, the source of Uncegila’s power was said to be her heart made purely of Crystal.
At a time of a great drought for the Sioux, the tribal hunters and their medicine man devised a plan to shoot Uncegila with a bow and arrow in the 7th joint of her neck – the source of her movement. The plan was a success, and Uncegila was finally destroyed after this reign of terror – but her Crystal heart is said to still lie at the bottom of the Nebraska River.!
Librarian and Senior Witch
More on Magical Creatures
Magical Creatures, Part 1
Magical Creatures, Part 3