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The Mbayá or Mbyá are a tribe formerly ranging on both sides of the Paraguay River, on the north and northwestern Paraguay frontier, and in the adjacent portion of the province of Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil. They have also been called Caduveo and Guaycuru, a name used generally of all the mounted Indians of Gran Chaco. The Kadiwéu people are the surviving branch of the Mbayá people.[1]


The Mbayá placed their heaven in the moon; and it was to the moon that their great heroes and sages went for a time after physical death, until they again returned to earth.

Among the Guaycurus of Paraguay, when a death had taken place, the chief used to change the name of every member of the tribe; and from that moment everybody remembered his new name just as if he had born it all his life.[2]

They had a reputation as raiders of their Guaraní neighbours.[3]

Today, Mbayá artisans are known for their necklaces, elaborate basketry, and woodcarvings.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Kadiwéu: Introduction." Povos Indígenos no Brasil. (retrieved 3 Dec 2011)
  2. ^ Frazer 1990, p. 357.
  3. ^ Mooney, James. Wikisource-logo.svg Herbermann, Charles, ed. (1913). "Mbaya Indians". Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company. 


  • Frazer, J. G. (1990), "Taboo and the Perils of the Soul", The Golden Bough (3rd ed., Part II ed.), New York: St. Martin's Press [1st ed., 1913.]

Public Domain This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainChisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "article name needed". Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.