The final chapter of the epic myth A War Between Gods.

For the earlier chapters and more Vietnamese myths click here:

Canto VII – For months the conflict lasted in this manner, until finally the period of the year when Thuy Tinh was in charge of shepherding the rain clouds came to an end and one of the sea god Long Vuong’s daughters or granddaughters (accounts vary) began shepherding her clouds in for her designated part of the year. She had no quarrel with Tan Vien or Mi Nuong and so the rains returned to a milder state, allowing the flood waters to subside. Interestingly, that is similar to Native American myths in which hard rains are called “male rains” and soft rains are called “female rains”.

The carnage was incredible, with the remains of buildings and the corpses of land and sea animals who had died in the fighting scattered plentifully about the landscape. In some versions this war between gods brought on the end of mythical creatures like the lans (a mythical tiger/giraffe/saola/ lizard  hybrid creature) ,the makaras and the tiger-headed elephants and sometimes others.

The  creatures and mythical relics lost in the war varies and is sometimes used as a virtual catch- all for explaining the disappearance of items and beasts. It reminds me of how The Churning of the Ocean in Hindu mythology was at first used simply to explain how the gods produced Soma for their own consumption but then gradually more and more items were added to the list of things spawned by that event including Airavata, the elephant the storm god Indra rides and the love and beauty goddess Lakshmi herself (shades of Aphrodite being born of the sea foam caused by the severed genitals of Chronos. And for my British readers wouldn’t ”The Severed Genitals” make a great name for a pub? Okay, forget it.)

Tan Vien and Chua Con ho helped Hung Vuong XVIII and his people recover from the flood and Tan Vien also taught them ways of trying to safeguard against future deluges. Inevitably, each year, the period when Thuy Tinh would shepherd in the rain clouds he was in charge of returned and his attempt to take Mi Nuong from Tan Vien Mountain by force resumed. Thuy Tinh became known as the god of the monsoon rains and was dreaded because of the  harm he might cause on each of his returns. All friendship between him and Tan Vien was forgotten and the two remain bitter enemies to this  day.             

© Edward Wozniak and Balladeer’s Blog, 2010 and 2011. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Edward Wozniak and Balladeer’s Blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.



Filed under Mythology


  1. Kim

    Incredible story. I never had heard of this story before now. Good to see some non-Euro mythology.

  2. Nice sum up. The side-references to the churning of the ocean helped get your meaning across.

  3. You could definitely see your enthusiasm within the paintings you write. The arena hopes for even more passionate writers such as you who aren’t afraid to say how they believe. All the time go after your heart.

  4. As a Vietnamese, thank you for bringing our myths to the world 😀
    I would like offer another version of this story (which we have learnt in school) and its interpretations:

    The gifts requested from Hung King were: an elephant with 9 tusks, a chicken with 9 talons and a horse with 9 red manes. Tan Vien (Son Tinh – mountain god) was faster, delivering the gifts early next morning. When Thuy Tinh (water god) finally managed to gather the needed animals, Mi Nuong was already on her way to Tan Vien’s home. The enraged Thuy Tinh thus waged war and lost. He comes back every year to get revenge but is pushed back everytime (salty)

    It is said that Hung King was biased towards Tan Vien from the start, requesting animals that would be easier found on land. That plus the victory of Tan Vien over Thuy Tinh records Viet people’s move to the agricultural way of life from a fish-harvestment one.
    Either that or just men’s triumph over nature.

  5. Pingback: A WAR BETWEEN GODS: VIETNAMESE EPIC MYTH | Balladeer's Blog

  6. Appreciating the persistence you put into your site and detailed information you provide. It’s great to come across a blog every once in a while that isn’t the same outdated rehashed information. Wonderful read! I’ve bookmarked your site and I’m including your RSS feeds to my Google account.

  7. Pingback: VIETNAMESE MYTHS: A WAR BETWEEN GODS | Balladeer's Blog

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