Oceanic Mythologies: Australian Aborigine and Polynesian

Australian Creations and Floods

Are there Australian flood myths?

Most Australian Aboriginal tribes have flood myths. One example comes from the southeast. It seems that the world had become overpopulated with birds, reptiles, and other animals, so a conference was called to decide on a proper solution. The conference took place on Blue Mountain. Tiger Snake began by proposing that birds and animals who could move easily should move to a new country. The next day the lizards, who knew about rainmaking, decided to act. Their desire was to rid the world of the platypuses. They instructed all of their family to perform the rain ceremony just before the new moon. The lizards fled to mountain tops, but a deluge covered the land below, and most of the world was destroyed. The flood finally ended and there were no platypuses. But sometime later the cormorant told the emu that he had seen a platypus beak mark near a river. In fact, the platypuses were hiding from the other creatures. Kangaroo called the animals together and proposed a search party for the platypuses. After some time Carpet Snake discovered the platypus home. Again Kangaroo called the animals together, and the lizard was expelled for his cruelty. And the animals discovered that in one way or another they were related to the platypuses. The platypuses were invited back and treated as ancient dignitaries. Eventually the head platypus married into the Bandicoot family. But platypuses have never been comfortable with other animals.


This is a web preview of the "The Handy Mythology Answer Book" app. Many features only work on your mobile device. If you like what you see, we hope you will consider buying. Get the App