As a natural result of this belief we find the view that the operations of nature are conducted by a multitude of more or less obedient subordinate deities; thus, in Portuguese West Africa the Kimbunda believe in Suku-Vakange, but hold that he has committed the government of the universe to innumerable kilulu good and bad; the latter kind are held to be far more numerous, but Suku-Vakange is said to keep them in order by occasionally smiting them with his thunderbolts; were it not for this, man's lot would be insupportable.
The broad palms of his tail are flirted high into the air; then smiting the surface, the thunderous concussion resounds for miles.
On the oldest monuments the years in a reign were not numbered consecutively but were named after events; thus in the 1st Dynasty we find the year of smiting the Antiu-people, in the beginning of the IIIrd Dynasty the year of fighting and smiting the people of Lower Egypt.
The first uprising momentum of the whale--modifying its direction as he struck the surface--involuntarily launched him along it, to a little distance from the centre of the destruction he had made; and with his back to it, he now lay for a moment slowly feeling with his flukes from side to side; and whenever a stray oar, bit of plank, the least chip or crumb of the boats touched his skin, his tail swiftly drew back, and came sideways smiting the sea.
Hearing the tremendous rush of the sea-crashing boat, the whale wheeled round to present his blank forehead at bay; but in that evolution, catching sight of the nearing black hull of the ship; seemingly seeing in it the source of all his persecutions; bethinking it--it may be--a larger and nobler foe; of a sudden, he bore down upon its advancing prow, smiting his jaws amid fiery showers of foam.
Then, with the maul, after repeatedly smiting the upper end of this iron rod, he placed the blunted needle endwise on the top of it, and less strongly hammered that, several times, the mate still holding the rod as before.
Next instant, the heavy eye-splice in the rope's final end flew out of the stark-empty tub, knocked down an oarsman, and smiting the sea, disappeared in its depths.