"Afa is a storm god in the Polynesian mythology of Samoa."
-- Wikipedia.                                                                                      

I've been meaning to node this for years. But really, what can you say? It's a lie. A DIRTY, ROTTEN LIE!

Hundreds of web-pages have claimed that Afa is a Polynesian deity. Do a Google search; a few years ago you would have found nearly a thousand sites, today we're down to fewer than 200. This would be encouraging, except that we're losing them from the fringes, not the core. The Encyclopedia Mythica, Wikipedia, and Webster's Online Dictionary (a cheap mirror of Wikipedia; Webster is not a registered trademark) still have Afa listed. Everything2 still has him on the Polynesian Mythology metanode, although the Afa node is (well, was) a nodeshell. I have been waiting for one of two things; some site to come up with a exposé, much as I am posting now, or even better, the source from which this whole meta-myth sprung. Neither has appeared.

This is one of those internet myths that come to pass from time to time, but this time it is such a small thing that no one noticed. It will probably be around for decades yet, as sites copy these three facts: Afa is a storm god; he comes from Samoa; Samoa is part of Polynesia. (This last one is actually true). There are only so many sentences you can make from these crumbs, but surprisingly no one has tried to elaborate. I suppose this says something about the intellectual honesty of internet plagiarism.

So here it is, The Truth: Afa is the Samoan word for a storm. There is no god involved. There isn't even a personification to the storms (i.e. "old man storm is out blowing around again"). It is just a word like thousands of others. And that's all.

And pedantic mythologists everywhere breathe a sign of relief.

It appears that someone has updated Wikipedia. Good job, someone!

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