Usage Inuit Mythology
Other Forms FormsSedna, Sanna, Nerrivik, Nuliajuq
Edit Status Status
Contributor Contrib.LMS on 8/23/2007
The Inuit goddess of the sea. According to most versions of the legend Arnarquagssaq, commonly known as Sedna, was once a beautiful mortal woman who became the ruler of Adlivun (the Inuit underworld at the bottom of the sea) after her father threw her out of his kayak into the ocean. Sedna's fingers, which her father had to cut off to keep her from clinging to the side of the boat, are often said to have turned into the first sea mammals. The other details of Sedna's story are told differently in different Inuit/Eskimo communities-- sometimes she provoked her father's rage by attacking him or violating cultural taboos, while other times her father was selfishly trying to save his own life by sacrificing Sedna.