As in the common " swallowing-myths " which we have met among bushmen and Australians, and will find among the Greeks, Qat restored his brethren to life.
Qat is always accompanied by a powerful supernatural spider named Marawa.
Banks Islands are chiefly ancestor-worshippers, but they also believe in, and occasionally pray to, a being named I Qat, one of the prehuman race endowed with supernatural powers who here, as elsewhere, do duty as gods.
Qat was born in the isle of Vanua Levu; his mother was either a stone at the time of his birth, or was turned into a stone afterwards, like Niobe.
Qat had eleven brothers, not much more reputable than the Osbaldistones in Rob Roy.
His pastime was to make wrong all that Qat made right, and he is sometimes the Ahriman to Qat's Ormuzd.
The creative achievements of Qat must be treated of in the next section.
Here it may be mentioned that, like the hero in the Breton mdrehen, Qat " brought the dawn " by introducing birds whose notes proclaimed the coming of morning.
Qat produced dawn, for the first time, by cutting the darkness with a knife of red obsidian.
Every night (as in the common European story about bridge-building and church-building) the work was all undone by Marawa, whom Qat found means to conciliate.
Qat, like so many other " culture-heroes," disappeared mysteriously, and white men arriving in the island have been mistaken for Qat.
In the New Hebrides, Tagar takes the role of Qat, and Suqe of the bad principle, Loki, Ahriman, Tangaro Loloqong, the Australian Crow and so forth.
Maui in some respects answers to the chief of the Adityas in Vedic mythology; in others he answers to Qat, Quawteaht, and other savage divine personages.
As Qat brought the hitherto unknown night, so Maui settled the sun and moon in their proper courses.
For the composite character of Quetzalcoatl as a "culturehero " (a more polished version of Qat), as a " nature-god," and as a theriomorphic god see Muller (op. cit.
If we are to regard the Egyptian myths about the gods in animal shape, and about the non-natural superhuman heroes, and their wars and loves, as esoteric allegories devised by civilized priests, perhaps we should also explain Pund-jel, Qat, Quawteaht, the Mantis god, the Spider creator, the Coyote and Raven gods as priestly inventions, put forth in a civilized age, and retained by Australians, Bushmen, Hottentots, Ahts, Thlinkeets, Papuans, who preserve no other vestiges of high civilization.
Melanesia: " man was made of clay, red from the marshy side of Vanua Levu "; woman was made by Qat of willow twigs.
- These are almost unanimously attributed to " culture-heroes," beings theriomorphic or anthropomorphic, who, like Pund-jel, Qat, Quawteaht, Prometheus, Manabozho, Quetzalcoatl, Cagn and the rest, taught men the use of the bow, the processes (where known) of pottery, agriculture (as Demeter), the due course of the mysteries, divination, and everything else they knew.
Here is an example of a prayer to Qat - the devotee is supposed to be in danger with his canoe: " Qate!
This being is rather a culture-hero, a member of a non-natural race of men like Qat or Manabozho, than a god.