Study Guide

Aegir - Swim Team

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Swim Team

The swim team is closely related to the sailing team. They both love to be on the sea. It's just that the swim team gets a little bit closer to its creatures, because they're swimming in it. Aegir's name, for example, means "ocean." He's actually the personification of it, and Njord's kind of like his boss. Aegir's also king of the sea creatures. Other members of this clique, too, get up close and personal with the ocean's creepy-crawlies.


According to Finnish mythology, Ahto is gloomy and sulky all the time. Maybe that's because he's tormented by a beard of itchy sea-grass. He also doesn't get a lot of sun because he hangs out under the sea in a palace called Ahtola with his wife, Wellamo. His subjects are salmon, trout, whiting, perch, herring, whitefish—basically, anything a Finnish fisherman might drag up in his net. Sometimes, as an expression of his sour mood, Ahto stirs up the waters, causing whirlpools.


You might know Triton as the loving and strict all-powerful dad from The Little Mermaid. But in Greek mythology, Triton answers to his dad, Poseidon. Like Poseidon, he carries a trident and lives in a palace under the sea. Triton's also a member of the band nerds clique. With his conch shell trumpet, he produces a sound so powerful that it stirs up or calms the waves, depending on how he's feeling that day. But he's really most comfortable on the swim team. That's because his top half is human, but his bottom half is fishy. Yup, he's a mer-man.


Ever seen the movie Whale Rider? If you have, then you know how important the ocean and its creatures are to the Maori people of Polynesia. Their creation story tells how the storm-god attacked his brothers with violent winds. They and all their kids and grandkids needed to get out of Dodge, fast. The grandchildren of the ocean god, Tangaroa, split up. TÅ«-te-wehiwehi (try saying that ten times fast) headed for the forest, while his brother, Ikatere, followed his grand-dad to the ocean and became lord of the fish. Turns out Ikatere made the better choice. Word has it that Tangaroa's mad about his other relatives abandoning him. That's why he keeps lapping at the sand. He's trying to turn their home into the ocean so he can reunite with them.

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