Nü Kua

Chinese - A serpent-bodied creator-goddess. Daughter of Shui Ching-tzu, some say. Wife or sister of Fu-hsi. She represents the yang of Chinese philosophy, her husband representing yin. In some stories she is the mother of the first humans, in others she made humans from clay and then splashed them with drops from a rope. The drops of clay became the upper classes while the peasants sprang from mud drops. In the story of the flood, she (Gourd Girl) and Fu-hsi (Gourd Boy) were the sole survivors, floating in a gourd from the tree grown from the tooth of a thunder-god whom they had freed from a trap set by their father. She mated with her brother, both in the form of snakes, to stock the earth with plants and animals. When they tried to produce human beings, they produced only a lump of unformed flesh. Fu-hsi cut this into pieces and scattered it over the world, so producing the human race. When Fu-hsi died, she took over as ruler under the name of Nü-huang and defeated Kung Kung when he tried to usurp the throne. She repaired the hole in the heavens and the damage caused to the earth when Kung Kung tore down the mountain that supported the heavens. Having set the world to rights, she climbed up a ladder and disappeared into the sky. She is said to have invented the flute and is credited with the introduction of marriage. Referred to as Nü Kua, Gourd Girl, Gourd Girl, Nü-huang, Nü-huang, Nü Wa, Nü Wa, Snail Maiden, Japanese Jokwa or Japanese Jokwa.

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