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In mythology, and in the study of folklore and religion, a trickster is a character in a story (god, goddess, spirit, human, or anthropomorphisation), which exhibits a great degree of intellect or secret knowledge, and uses it to play tricks or otherwise disobey normal rules and conventional behaviour.wikipedia
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Hermes CriophorusMercuryHermes Psychopompus
In some Greek myths Hermes plays the trickster.
In some myths, he is a trickster and outwits other gods for his own satisfaction or for the sake of humankind.

Jungian archetypes

The trickster or clown is an example of a Jungian archetype.
In theory, Jungian archetypes refer to unclear underlying forms or the archetypes-as-such from which emerge images and motifs such as the mother, the child, the trickster, and the flood among others.

Bugs Bunny

BugsBaby BugsHappy Rabbit
More modern and obvious examples of that type include Bugs Bunny and Pippi Longstocking.
He is also characterized by a Brooklyn accent, his portrayal as a trickster, and his catch phrase "Eh...What's up, doc?".


In mythology, and in the study of folklore and religion, a trickster is a character in a story (god, goddess, spirit, human, or anthropomorphisation), which exhibits a great degree of intellect or secret knowledge, and uses it to play tricks or otherwise disobey normal rules and conventional behaviour.
The same consciousness of the fable as fiction is to be found in other examples across the world, one example being a traditional Ashanti way of beginning tales of the anthropomorphic trickster-spider Anansi: "We do not really mean, we do not really mean that what we are about to say is true. A story, a story; let it come, let it go."


Logesame nameLopt
In Norse mythology the mischief-maker is Loki, who is also a shape shifter.
Loki's origins and role in Norse mythology, which some scholars have described as that of a trickster god, have been much debated by scholars.


AnancyAnanseAunt Nancy
In West Africa (and thence into the Caribbean via the slave trade), the spider (Anansi) is often the trickster.
Taking the role of trickster, he is also one of the most important characters of West African, African American and Caribbean folklore.


Azeban is a lower-level trickster spirit in Abenaki mythology.


Ekwensu is a Trickster god of the Igbo people who serves as the Alusi (god) of bargains and the tortoise.

Br'er Rabbit

Brer RabbitBruh RabbitBr'er '''RABB'''-it
Following in this tradition, critics since Gates have come to assert that another popular African American folk trickster, Br'er Rabbit (a contraction of "Brother Rabbit"), uses clever language to perform the same kind of rebellious societal deconstruction as the Signifying Monkey.
He is a trickster who succeeds by his wits rather than by brawn, provoking authority figures and bending social mores as he sees fit.

Abenaki mythology

AbenakiA-senee-ki-wakwAbenaki religion

Culture hero

cultural heroculture heroesculture-hero
In Slavic folktales, the trickster and the culture hero are often combined.
In many Native American mythologies and beliefs, the coyote spirit stole fire from the gods (or stars or sun) and is more of a trickster than a culture hero.

Picaresque novel

Native American tricksters should not be confused with the European fictional picaro.
Al-Hamadhani (d.1008) of Hamadhan (Iran) is credited with inventing the literary genre of maqamat in which a wandering vagabond makes his living on the gifts his listeners give him following his extemporaneous displays of rhetoric, erudition, or verse, often done with a trickster's touch.

Saci (Brazilian folklore)

SaciSaci PererêSacis
Considered an annoying prankster in most parts of Brazil, and a potentially dangerous and malicious creature in others, he nevertheless grants wishes to anyone who manages to trap him or steal his magic cap.

San Martin Txiki

San Martin Txiki ("Little Saint Martin") is the Trickster figure from Basque mythology.

Crow (Australian Aboriginal mythology)

In Australian Aboriginal mythology, Crow is a trickster, culture hero and ancestral being.


Tricksters are archetypal characters who appear in the myths of many different cultures.
Cultural archetypes are the unknowable basic forms personified or made concrete by recurring images, symbols, or patterns (which may include motifs such as the "quest" or the "heavenly ascent"; recognizable character types such as the "trickster", "saint", "martyr" or the "hero"; symbols such as the apple or the snake; and imagery) and that have all been laden with meaning prior to their inclusion in any particular work.

Lange Wapper

He is a legendary giant and trickster whose folk tales were told especially in the city of Antwerp and its neighbouring towns, but similar tales are also prominent in other Flemish cities.

Till Eulenspiegel

Tijl UilenspiegelEulenspiegelThyl Ulenspiegel
He plays practical jokes on his contemporaries, exposing vices at every turn.

Reynard the Fox

ReynardReineke FuchsReynard cycle
The stories are largely concerned with the main character Reynard (Reinaert; Renart; Reineke or Reinicke; Renartus), an anthropomorphic red fox and trickster figure.


The Mannegishi (singular the same) are a race of trickster people in Cree folklore, similar in nature to the Memegwesi of the Ojibwa.


PrometheanCaucasian EaglePrometeo
In Greek mythology, Prometheus (, possibly meaning "forethought") is a Titan, culture hero, and trickster figure who is credited with the creation of humanity from clay, and who defies the gods by stealing fire and giving it to humanity as civilization.

Cultural depictions of ravens

RavenRaven spiritRaven the Trickster
In many Native American and First Nations mythologies, the Coyote spirit (Southwestern United States) or Raven spirit (Pacific Northwest) stole fire from the gods (stars, moon, and/or sun).
The raven in these indigenous peoples' mythology is the Creator of the world, but it is also considered a trickster god.


He is a trickster god who can shape shift, usually taking the form of a praying mantis but also a bull eland, a louse, a snake, and a caterpillar.

Akan religion

Akan mythologyAkanAshanti mythology
Anansi the Spider is a folk hero, who is prominent in Ashanti folktales, where he is depicted as a trickster and wise.


Whiskey JackWiisagejaak
Wisakedjak (Wìsakedjàk in Algonquin, Wīsahkēcāhk(w) in Cree and Wiisagejaak in Oji-cree) is the Crane Manitou found in northern Algonquian and Dene storytelling, similar to the trickster Nanabozho in Ojibwa aadizookaanan (sacred stories) and Inktonme in Assiniboine lore.