🕷Along Came a Spider - Art work by: Tekelili ~ Deviant Art
🕸Anansi is a trickster god who originated in myths coming from the Ashanti people in West Africa. He is able to take the shape of a spider, but sometimes he does keep his human-like form. He is a very important character in West African and Carribean mythology. Anansi is well known and quite popular. In the tales that were passed down through oral tradition, they teach us that he was quick, cunning, and easily able to outsmart those around him.
📖One of the most famous folk stories of Anansi is how he gained all of the stories of the world from the Sky & Creator god, Nyame. (We do have a post about Nyame if you'd like to scroll down and read that as well). The legend says that Nyame was the one who held all of the stories of the world, and Anansi wanted to buy them from him. Nyame told Anansi he would only accept the payment if he were able to capture the four most dangerous creatures of the world.
😅Nyame thought this task would be impossible and that no one could ever complete it. In some versions of this story the four creatures were a dangerous python, a fairy, a leopard and a group of hornets. With tons of trickery and clever scheming, Anansi did eventually complete the task of capturing the four most dangerous creatures on earth. In return, Nyame did in fact offer to give Anansi all the wisdom and stories of the world.
🌍There are many variations of that story - I highly recommend reading some. African folklore is rich with valuable lessons and very comical situations. These are the types of stories that we can all learn something from! And that is how Anansi the spider deity became associated with knowledge and being a trickster.
🎉Anansi is so popular he has even made his way into modern comics, television, video games and music. He was first mentioned in Justice League America No. 23, and was named in No. 24 as the spider god who owns all stories!