Italian Popular Tales
by Thomas Frederick Crane
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The minister went in great glee to the king and said: "Your Majesty, I have found the answer to the riddle; it is so and so." The king exclaimed: "You can have heard it only from the peasant himself," had the peasant summoned, and took him to task. "Did you not promise me not to tell it until you had seen my face a hundred times?" "But, your Majesty," answered the peasant, "your minister showed me your picture a hundred times." Then he showed him the bag of money that the minister had given him. The king was so pleased with the clever peasant that he rewarded him, and made him a rich man for the rest of his life.[26]


Once upon a time there was a huntsman who had a wife and two children, a son and a daughter; and all lived together in a wood where no one ever came, and so they knew nothing about the world. The father alone sometimes went to the city and brought back the news. The king's son once went hunting and lost himself in that wood, and while he was seeking his way it became night. He was weary and hungry. Imagine how he felt! But all at once he saw a light shining at a distance. He followed it and reached the huntsman's house and asked for lodging and something to eat. The huntsman recognized him at once and said: "Highness, we have already supped on our best. But if we can find anything for you, you must be satisfied with it. What can we do? We are so far from the towns, that we cannot procure what we need every day." Meanwhile he had a capon cooked for him. The prince did not wish to eat it alone, but called all the huntsman's family, and gave the head of the capon to the father, the back to the mother, the legs to the son, and the wings to the daughter, and ate the rest himself. In the house there were only two beds, in the same room. In one the husband and wife slept, in the other the brother and sister. The old people went and slept in the stable, giving up their bed to the prince. When the girl saw that the prince was asleep, she said to her brother: "I will wager that you do not know why the prince divided the capon among us in the manner he did." "Do you know? Tell me why." "He gave the head to papa because he is the head of the family, the back to mamma because she has on her shoulders all the affairs of the house, the legs to you because you must be quick in performing the errands which are given you, and the wings to me to fly away and catch a husband." The prince pretended to be asleep; but he was awake and heard these words, and perceived that the girl had much judgment; and as she was also pretty, he fell in love with her.

The next morning he left the huntsman's; and as soon as he reached the court, he sent him, by a servant, a purse of money. To the young girl he sent a cake in the form of a full moon, thirty patties, and a cooked capon, with three questions: "Whether it was the thirtieth of the month in the wood, whether the moon was full, and whether the capon crowed in the night." The servant, although a trusty one, was overcome by his gluttony and ate fifteen of the patties, and a good slice of the cake, and the capon. The young girl, who had understood it all, sent back word to the prince that the moon was not full but on the wane; that it was only the fifteenth of the month and that the capon had gone to the mill; and that she asked him to spare the pheasant for the sake of the partridge. The prince, too, understood the metaphor, and having summoned the servant, he cried: "Rogue! you have eaten the capon, fifteen patties, and a good slice of the cake. Thank that girl who has interceded for you; if she had not, I would have hung you."

A few months after this, the huntsman found a gold mortar, and wished to present it to the prince. But his daughter said: "You will be laughed at for this present. You will see that the prince will say to you: 'The mortar is fine and good, but, peasant, where is the pestle?'" The father did not listen to his daughter; but when he carried the mortar to the prince, he was greeted as his daughter had foretold. "My daughter told me so," said the huntsman. "Ah! if I had only listened to her!" The prince heard these words and said to him: "Your daughter, who pretends to be so wise, must make me a hundred ells of cloth out of four ounces of flax; if she does not I will hang you and her." The poor father returned home weeping, and sure that he and his daughter must die, for who could make a hundred ells of cloth with four ounces of flax. His daughter came out to meet him, and when she learned why he was weeping, said: "Is that all you are weeping for? Quick, get me the flax and I will manage it." She made four small cords of the flax and said to her father: "Take these cords and tell him that when he makes me a loom out of these cords I will weave the hundred ells of cloth." When the prince heard this answer he did not know what to say, and thought no more about condemning the father or the daughter.

The next day he went to the wood to visit the girl. Her mother was dead, and her father was out in the fields digging. The prince knocked, but no one opened. He knocked louder, but the same thing. The young girl was deaf to him. Finally, tired of waiting, he broke open the door and entered: "Rude girl! who taught you not to open to one of my rank? Where are your father and mother?" "Who knew it was you? My father is where he should be and my mother is weeping for her sins. You must leave, for I have something else to do than listen to you." The prince went away in anger and complained to the father of his daughter's rude manners, but the father excused her. The prince, at last seeing how wise and cunning she was, married her.

The wedding was celebrated with great splendor, but an event happened which came near plunging the princess into misfortune. One Sunday two peasants were passing a church; one of them had a hand-cart and the other was leading a she-ass ready to foal. The bell rang for mass and they both entered the church, one leaving his cart outside and the other tying the ass to the cart. While they were in the church the ass foaled, and the owner of the ass and the owner of the cart both claimed the colt. They appealed to the prince, and he decided that the colt belonged to the owner of the cart, because, he said, it was more likely that the owner of the ass would tie her to the cart in order to lay a false claim to the colt than that the owner of the cart would tie it to the ass. The owner of the ass had right on his side, and all the people were in his favor, but the prince had pronounced sentence and there was nothing to say. The poor man then applied to the princess, who advised him to cast a net in the square when the prince passed. When the prince saw the net, he said: "What are you doing, you fool? Do you expect to find fish in the square?" The peasant, who had been advised by the princess, answered: "It is easier for me to find fish in the square than for a cart to have foals." The prince revoked the sentence, but when he returned to the palace, knowing that the princess had suggested the answer to the peasant, he said to her: "Prepare to return to your own home within an hour. Take with you what you like best and depart." She was not at all saddened by the prospect, but ate a better dinner than usual, and made the prince drink a bottle of wine in which she had put a sleeping potion; and when he was as sound asleep as a log, she had him put in a carriage and took him with her to her house in the wood. It was in January, and she had the roof of the house uncovered and it snowed on the prince, who awoke and called his servants: "What do you wish?" said the princess. "I command here. Did you not tell me to take from your house the thing I liked best? I have taken you, and now you are mine." The prince laughed and they made peace.[27]

* * * * *

The next story is the Italian version of the tale familiar to the readers of Grimm by the title of "Doctor Knowall." There is a Sicilian version in Pitre, No. 167, in which our story forms one of several episodes. It is found, however, independently in the Mantuan collection from which we take it, changing the name slightly to suit the conclusion of the story.


There was once a king who had lost a valuable ring. He looked for it everywhere, but could not find it. So he issued a proclamation that if any astrologer could tell him where it was he would be richly rewarded. A poor peasant by the name of Crab heard of the proclamation. He could neither read nor write, but took it into his head that he wanted to be the astrologer to find the king's ring. So he went and presented himself to the king, to whom he said: "Your Majesty must know that I am an astrologer, although you see me so poorly dressed. I know that you have lost a ring and I will try by study to find out where it is." "Very well," said the king, "and when you have found it, what reward must I give you?" "That is at your discretion, your Majesty." "Go, then, study, and we shall see what kind of an astrologer you turn out to be."

He was conducted to a room, in which he was to be shut up to study. It contained only a bed and a table on which were a large book and writing materials. Crab seated himself at the table and did nothing but turn over the leaves of the book and scribble the paper so that the servants who brought him his food thought him a great man. They were the ones who had stolen the ring, and from the severe glances that the peasant cast at them whenever they entered, they began to fear that they would be found out. They made him endless bows and never opened their mouths without calling him "Mr. Astrologer." Crab, who, although illiterate, was, as a peasant, cunning, all at once imagined that the servants must know about the ring, and this is the way his suspicions were confirmed. He had been shut up in his room turning over his big book and scribbling his paper for a month, when his wife came to visit him. He said to her: "Hide yourself under the bed, and when a servant enters, say: 'That is one;' when another comes, say: 'That is two;' and so on." The woman hid herself. The servants came with the dinner, and hardly had the first one entered when a voice from under the bed said: "That is one." The second one entered; the voice said: "That is two;" and so on. The servants were frightened at hearing that voice, for they did not know where it came from, and held a consultation. One of them said: "We are discovered; if the astrologer denounces us to the king as thieves, we are lost." "Do you know what we must do?" said another. "Let us hear." "We must go to the astrologer and tell him frankly that we stole the ring, and ask him not to betray us, and present him with a purse of money. Are you willing?" "Perfectly."

So they went in harmony to the astrologer, and making him a lower bow than usual, one of them began: "Mr. Astrologer, you have discovered that we stole the ring. We are poor people and if you reveal it to the king, we are undone. So we beg you not to betray us, and accept this purse of money." Crab took the purse and then added: "I will not betray you, but you must do what I tell you, if you wish to save your lives. Take the ring and make that turkey in the court-yard swallow it, and leave the rest to me." The servants were satisfied to do so and departed with a low bow. The next day Crab went to the king and said to him: "Your Majesty must know that after having toiled over a month I have succeeded in discovering where the ring has gone to." "Where is it, then?" asked the king. "A turkey has swallowed it." "A turkey? very well, let us see."

They went for the turkey, opened it, and found the ring inside. The king, amazed, presented the astrologer with a large purse of money and invited him to a banquet. Among the other dishes, there was brought on the table a plate of crabs. Crabs must then have been very rare, because only the king and a few others knew their name. Turning to the peasant the king said: "You, who are an astrologer, must be able to tell me the name of these things which are in this dish." The poor astrologer was very much puzzled, and, as if speaking to himself, but in such a way that the others heard him, he muttered: "Ah! Crab, Crab, what a plight you are in!" All who did not know that his name was Crab rose and proclaimed him the greatest astrologer in the world.[28]



[1] There are some popular tales, chiefly Oriental in their origin, in the Cente novelle antiche (see the notes to Chapter III.), and Boccaccio and his imitators undoubtedly made use of popular material. These popular elements, however, are almost exclusively of the class of jests. The fairy tale, which constitutes by far the largest and most important class of popular tales, is not found in European literature until Straparola. For a few earlier traces of fairy tales in mediaeval literature, see an article by the writer, "Two Mediaeval Folk-Tales," in the Germania, XVIII. [New Series], p. 203.

[2] The little that is known of Straparola and a very complete bibliography of his Piacevoli Notti will be found in an excellent monograph entitled, Giovan Francesco Straparola da Caravaggio, Inaugural-Dissertation von F. W. J. Brakelmann aus Soest, Goettingen, 1867. Straparola's work, especially the unexpurgated editions, is scarce, and the student will ordinarily be obliged to consult it in the French translation of Louveau and Larivey, of which there is an excellent edition in the Bibliotheque Elzevirienne of P. Jannet, Paris, 1857. There is a German translation with valuable notes of the maerchen contained in the Piacevoli Notti by F. W. Val. Schmidt, Berlin, 1817. Schmidt used, without knowing it, an expurgated edition, and translated eighteen instead of twenty-two popular tales.

[3] The reader will find all the necessary references to Straparola's borrowed materials in Liebrecht's translation of Dunlop's History of Fiction, pp. 283, 493; in Brakelmann's dissertation above cited; in the French version in the Bib. Elzevir.; and in Grimm, II. 477.

[4] A comparison of Straparola's tales with those of Grimm, and an analysis of those lacking in Schmidt's translation, will be found in Grimm, II. 477-481.

[5] The imitations of Straparola will be found in Dunlop-Liebrecht, p. 284. It is impossible to say with absolute certainty that Perrault borrowed his "Chat Botte" and "Peau d'Ane" from Straparola. It is, however, quite likely. Perrault's stories appeared 1694-97, and twelve editions of the French translation of Straparola had been issued before that date.

[6] The few details of Basile's life will be found in Grimm, II. 481, Liebrecht's translation, II. p. 316, and Taylor's translation, p. v. An article in a recent number of the periodical named from Basile, vol. II. p. 17, gives the conflicting testimony of a number of Italian writers as to Basile's birth and death. The writer has discovered a mention of Basile's burial in the church of St. Sophia at Giugliano, near Naples, and in a record of deaths kept in the same town, an entry stating that Basile died there on the 23d of February, 1632. The following are all the editions of which I can find mention: Naples, 1637, 8vo, 1644, 12mo, 1645, 1674, 1694 (Graesse), 1697 (Pitre), 1714, 1722, 1728, 1747, 1749 (Liebrecht), 1788, Collezione di Tutti i Poemi, etc.; Rome, 1679, 1797 (Pitre). Italian translations appeared at Naples in 1754, 1769, 1784, and 1863, and in Bolognese at Bologna, 1742, 1813, 1872, and at Venice in 1813. The editions used in the preparation of this work will be found in the Bibliography. In spite of the numerous editions above cited, the Pentamerone is a very scarce work, and the scholar will usually have to content himself with Liebrecht's excellent translation. Thirty-one of the fifty stories have been admirably translated by John Edward Taylor, London, 1848, 1850. The Pentamerone suffered the same fate as the Piacevoli Notti. It was not known, for instance, in Germany, until Fernow described it in his Roemische Studien, Zuerich, 1808, vol. III. pp. 316, 475, although Wieland had taken the material for his "Pervonte" from the third story of the first day.

[7] The frame of the Pentamerone is the story of the "False Bride:" see Gonz., Nos. 11, 12; Pitre, No. 13; Imbriani, "'E Sette Mane-Mozze;" and Hahn, Nos. 12, 49. Grimm, II. p. 483, gives the stories in the Pent. which have parallels among his own Kinder- und Hausmaerchen. The notes to Liebrecht's translation are to be supplemented by the same author's additional notes in his translation of Dunlop, p. 515.

[8] This story is usually printed with Perrault's tales, but its author was really Mlle. Lheritier. See the latest edition of Perrault's tales, Les Contes de Charles Perrault, par Andre Lefevre, Paris, Lemerre, 1875, p. xli.

[9] See Dunlop-Liebrecht, p. 408 et seq.; and Grimm, II. p. 489 et seq.

[10] References to four of the five stories will be found as follows: I., Pitre, vol. IV. pp. 372, 375; II., Pitre, ibid. p. 381; III., Nov. fior. pp. 93, 112, Pitre, No. 36; V., Pitre, vol. IV. p. 391. The two editions of Naples, 1684 and 1751, are extremely scarce and the student will be obliged to have recourse to the edition of 1789, contained in the Collezione di tutti li poeti in lingua Napoletana.

[11] Pitre, vol. I. p. xliii., mentions some other names, as, rumanzi by the inhabitants of Termini, and pugaret by the Albanian colonists. To these may be added another Milanese appellation, panzanega.

[12] Other endings are given by Imbriani, Pomiglianesi, p. 129:—

Cuccurucu, No' noe n' cchiu.

(Cuccurucu, there is no more.)

Cuccurucu. Sa' 'o vuo' cchiu bello, t' o dice tu.

(Cuccurucu, if you want it finer, tell it yourself.) See also Pitre, vol. I. p. 196, note 2. The most curious introductions and endings are those in De Nino, Usi e Costumi abruzzesi, vol. III. There is no general formula, but each fiaba has one of its own. Some are meaningless jingles, but others are quite extensive poems on religious subjects. Among these may be found legends of various saints, St. Nicholas, p. 335, etc.

[13] An interesting article might be written on the Italian story-tellers, generally illiterate women, from whose lips the stories in the modern collections have been taken down. Some details may be found in Pitre, vol. I. p. xvii. (repeated in Ralston's article in Fraser's Magazine).

[14] Any attempt at an explanation of these facts would lead into the vexed question of the origin and diffusion of popular tales in general. We cannot refrain, however, from calling attention to a remark by Nerucci in the preface to his Nov. pop. montalesi, p. v. He thinks that the Italian popular tale will be found to have much the same origin as the Italian popular poetry, that is, that very much is of a literary origin which has usually been deemed popular. This is undoubtedly true of many stories; but may not two versions of a given story, a popular and a literary one, have had a source common to both? A very interesting study might be made of the Italian popular tales in their relation to literary versions which may be the originals.

The most valuable contributions to the question of the origin of Italian popular tales are those by Pitre in the first volume of his Fiabe, pp. xli.-cxlv., and in the same author's Nov. pop. tosc. pp. v.-xxxviii.



[1] This story is a variant of Pitre, No. 17, Marvizia (the name of the heroine who was as small as a marva, the mallow plant), in which the introduction is wanting. The heroine falls in love with a green bird she sees in her garden, and goes in search of it. After many adventures, she restores the bird to its former human shape and marries it. Other Italian versions of the story in the text are: Sicilian, Pitre, No. 281, Nuovo Saggio, V.; Gonz., No. 15; Neapolitan, Pent. II. 9, V. 4; Comp., No. 33 (from the Basilicata); Roman, Busk, p. 99; Tuscan, De Gub., Sto. Stefano, No. 14; and Tyrolese, Schneller, No. 13.

An important trait in the above class is "Tasks set Wife." Besides in the above stories, this trait is also found in those belonging to other classes: see De Gub., Sto. Stefano, No. 2, and Nov. fior. p. 209.

Another important trait is the following: When after a long search the wife discovers her husband, it is only to find him in the power of a second wife, who, however, by various bribes, is induced to permit the first wife to spend a night in her husband's chamber. She is unable to awaken her husband, who has been drugged by the second wife. The third night she succeeds, makes herself known to him, and they escape. As an example of this trait, we give in full De Gub., Sto. Stefano, No. 14, referred to above.


A woodman had three daughters. Every morning one after the other, in turn, carried him his bread to the wood. The father and the daughters noticed in a thicket a large snake, which one day asked the old man for one of his daughters in marriage, threatening him with death if none of them would accept such an offer. The father told his daughters of the snake's offer, and the first and second immediately refused. If the third had refused too, there would have been no hope of salvation for the father; but for his sake she declared at once that snakes had always pleased her, and she thought the snake proposed by her father very handsome. At this the snake shook his tail in token of great joy, and making his bride mount it, carried her away to the midst of a beautiful meadow, where he caused a splendid palace to arise while he himself became a handsome man, and revealed himself as Sir Fiorante with the red and white stockings. But woe to her if she ever disclosed to any one his existence and name! She would lose him forever, unless, to obtain possession of him again, she wore out a pair of iron shoes, a staff and a hat, and filled with her tears seven bottles. The maiden promised; but she was a woman; she went to visit her sisters; one of them wished to know her husband's name, and was so cunning that at last her sister told her, but when the poor girl went back to see her husband, she found neither husband nor palace. To find him again, she was obliged in despair to do penance. She walked and walked and walked, and wept unceasingly. She had already filled one bottle with tears, when she met an old woman who gave her a fine walnut to crack in time of need, and disappeared. When she had filled four bottles, she met another old woman, who gave her a hazel-nut to crack in time of need, and disappeared. She had filled all seven bottles when a third old woman appeared to her, and left her an almond to be cracked in a third case of need, and she, too, disappeared. At last the young girl reached the castle of Sir Fiorante, who had taken another wife. The girl broke first the walnut, and found in it a beautiful dress which the second wife wanted herself. The young girl said: "You may have it if you will let me sleep with Sir Fiorante." The second wife consented, but meanwhile she gave Sir Fiorante some opium. In the night, the young girl said: "Sir Fiorante with the red and white stockings, I have worn out a pair of iron shoes, the staff and the hat, and filled seven bottles with tears, wherefore you must recognize your first wife."

He made no answer, for he had taken opium. The next day the girl opened the hazel-nut, and out came a dress more beautiful than the first; Sir Fiorante's second wife wanted this, and obtained it on the same condition as the first, but took care that Sir Fiorante should take some opium before going to bed. The third day, a faithful servant asked Sir Fiorante if he had not heard in the night the cries that were uttered near him. Sir Fiorante replied, No, but was careful not to take any opium the third night, when, having broken the almond and found in it a dress of unapproachable beauty, the young girl obtained the second wife's consent to sleep anew with Sir Fiorante. The latter pretended this time to take the opium, but did not. Then he feigned to be asleep, but remained awake in order to hear the cries of his abandoned wife, which he could not resist, and began to embrace her. The next day they left that palace to the second wife, and departed together and went to live in happiness at another more wonderful castle.

* * * * *

This episode is found in the Pent. V. 3, otherwise not belonging to this class; and in Comp., No. 51, and Nov. fior. p. 168, which properly belong to the formula of "Animal Children."

Hahn's formula No. 6, in which a maiden sells herself for three costly presents, and is obliged to marry the buyer, is sufficiently illustrated by Gonz., No. 18, Pitre, No. 105, and Nerucci, No. 50. In the last story the person to whom the maiden has sold herself refuses to marry her.

The wedding torch is found also in Pitre, No. 17, and is clearly a survival of the classic custom. The episode in which the birth of the child is hindered recalls the myths of Latona and Alcmene, see Koehler's notes to Gonz., No. 12 (II. p. 210). Other cases of malicious arrest of childbirth in popular literature may be found in Child's English and Scottish Pop. Ballads, Part I. p. 84. Pandora's box is also found in Pent. V. 4.

Copious references to other Europeans versions of our story will be found in Koehler's notes to Gonz., No. 15 (II. 214), and to Blade, Contes pop. rec. en Agenais, p. 145, to which may be added the notes to the Grimm stories Nos. 88, 113, 127 ("The Soaring Lark," "The Two Kings' Children," and "The Iron Stove"), and Benfey, Pant. I. p. 255.

[2] The lamp lighted at night to enable the wife to see her husband is found in Pitre, No. 82, and in a Calabrian story in De Gub., Zool. Myth. II. 286-287, where the drop of wax falls on the mirror of the sleeping youth. The same incident occurs in the curious story of "The Enchanted Palace," in Comp., No. 27, which is simply a reversal of the Cupid and Psyche myth, and in which the husband is the curious one, and the drop of wax falls on the sleeping wife, and awakens her.

The "iron shoes" are found in Comp., No. 51; Pitre, No. 56; Pent. V. 4; De Gub., Sto. Stefano, No. 14; Gradi, Vigilia, p. 26; and Ortoli, p. 8. See also Hahn, Nos. 73, 102, and Basque Legends, p. 39.

[3] See Koehler to Gonz., No. 16; Dunlop-Liebrecht, p. 406 (Anmerkung. 475, and Nachtrag, p. 544); Graesse, Sagen-Kreise, p. 380; Benfey, I. 254; and Simrock, D.M. pp. 332, 391, 427.

[4] Other Italian versions of this story are: Nerucci, Nos. 33, 59; Comparetti, No. 27 (Monferrato), mentioned already in Note 2; and Schneller, No. 13. Pitre, No. 27, has some points of contact also with our story.

[5] Nerucci, No. 1, and Nov. fior. p. 319. For the story of "Beauty and the Beast" in general, see Ralston's article with this title in the Nineteenth Century, No. 22, December, 1878; and notes to Schiefner's Tibetan Tales, London, 1882, p. xxxvii.

[6] The following versions all contain the episodes of the father asking his daughters what gifts he shall bring them, and daughter's tardy return to the monster: Busk, p. 115; Gradi, Saggio, p. 189; Comparetti, No. 64 (Montale); and Zooel. Myth. II. p. 382 (Leghorn), with which compare Indian Fairy Tales, p. 292. In Fiabe Mant. No. 24, we have father's gifts and sympathetic ring; but the danger to monster does not depend on the tardiness of his bride. In Zool. Myth. II. p. 381 (Piedmont), we have father's gift; but danger to monster results from wife's revealing his name to her sisters. Schneller, No. 25, contains the usual introduction (father's gifts), but the monster, a snake, accompanies his bride on her visit home, and while they are dancing together she steps on his tail and crushes it, whereupon the snake becomes a handsome young man. A Sicilian story, "Zafarana" (Gonz., No. 9), contains both episodes above mentioned, but otherwise differs from the class of stories we are now examining.

Closely allied with the formula of "Beauty and the Beast" is that of "Animal Children." In the latter class the introduction (father's gift) is wanting, and also the episode of visit of wife and tardy return. The "animal child" is usually born in accordance with a rash wish of childless mother that she might have a son, even if he were like one of the animals which she happens to see (Hahn, Formula No. 7). When the "animal child" is grown up his parents attempt to obtain a wife for him; two of three sisters show their disgust and are killed; the third is more prudent, and ultimately disenchants her husband, usually by burning his skin, which he puts on and off at pleasure. The typical story of this class is Pitre, No. 56, "The Serpent." To Pitre's copious references may be added: Comparetti, No. 9 (Monferrato), in which the prince resumes his shape after his third marriage without any further means of disenchantment; No 66 (Monferrato), the prince takes off seven skins, and from a dragon becomes a handsome youth. In both these stories the prince is enchanted and not born in accordance with mother's wish. Gianandrea, p. 15, is a version of Comp., No. 9. Corazzini, p. 429 (Benevento), belongs more properly to "Beauty and the Beast;" the husband disappears on wife's revealing to his mother the secret of his being a handsome youth by night. A somewhat similar version is in Prato, No. 4, "Il Re Serpente." See also Finamore, Nov. pop. abruzzesi, Nos. 6, 21, and Archivio, I. 424 (Piedmont), 531 (Tuscany); II. 403 (Marches); III. 362 (Abruzzi).

For other references to this class see Koehler's notes to Widter-Wolf, Jahrb. VII. p. 249; Benfey, Pant. I. p. 265 et seq.; and notes to Grimm, Nos. 108 ("Hans the Hedgehog") and 144 ("The Little Ass").

[7] Other Italian versions may be found in Pitre, No. 38; Gonz., No. 27; Pent. II. 2; Busk, pp. 46, 57, and 63; Fiabe Mant. Nos. 3 and 17; Nov. tosc. 4; and Schneller, No. 21. Pent. II. 5, contains many points of resemblance, although it belongs to the class of "Animal Children."

Two very close non-Italian versions are Asbj., No. 84, "The Green Knight" [Tales from the Fjeld, p. 311, "The Green Knight"], and Hahn, No. 7, "The Golden Wand."

An important episode in the above stories is "sick prince and secret remedy." This is found in stories belonging to other classes, as for example in Schneller, 9, 10, 11; in 10 the princess is ill, in 11 there is simply the "overheard council of witches;" Nov. fior. pp. 599, 601 (princess ill), and Comp., No. 8 (sick prince).

The above trait is found in the class of stories which may be named "True and Untrue," and of which Grimm, No. 107, "The Two Travellers," is a good example. Italian versions may be found in Widter-Wolf, No. 1 (Jahrb. VII. p. 3); Nerucci, No. 23; Ive, Nozze Ive-Lorenzetto, p. 31, "La Curona del Gran Giegno." Non-Italian versions will be found in Koehler's notes to Widter-Wolf, and Ive's notes to above cited story.

[8] This class is named by Hahn from Genevieve de Brabant, whose legend may be found in Dict. des Legendes, p. 396, and, with copious references, in D'Ancona's Sacre Rappresentazioni, III. p. 235.

[9] The title of the original is "Li figghi di lu Cavuliciddaru," "The Herb-gatherer's Daughters."

[10] Another Sicilian version is "Re Sonnu," in Pitre, Nuovo Saggio, No. 1. To the references in Pitre, No. 36, and Gonz., No. 5, may be added: Fiabe Mant. No. 14, only as far as abstraction of children are concerned and accusation of murder against the mother; No. 46, a poor version, the beginning of which is lost; Comparetti, Nos. 6 (Basilicata), and 30 (Pisa); No. 17 (Pisa) is a defective version, the search for the marvellous objects being omitted; another distorted version from Monferrato is found in the same collection, No. 25. See also Prato, Quattro nov. pop. livornesi, No. 2, and Finamore, No. 39. Two of the traits of our story are found in many others; they are: "Sympathetic objects," ring, etc., and "Life-giving ointment or leaves." For the former, see notes to next two stories, and in general, Brueyre, p. 93; for the latter, see Gonz., No. 40; Comparetti, No. 32 (see Note 12); Bernoni, Punt. III. p. 84. In these stories the life-restoring substance is an ointment; leaves possessing the same power are found in Pitre, No. 11, Pent. I. 7, La Posillecheata, No. 1, and Coronedi-Berti, No. 14. See also Grimm, No. 16, "The Three Snake-Leaves;" Basque Legends, p. 117; Benfey, Pant. I. 454, Cox, Aryan Myth. I. 160; and Germania, XXI. p. 68. For non-Italian versions of the story in the text see Koehler's notes in Melusine, p. 213, to a Breton version, and Indian Fairy Tales, pp. 242, 277.

In the above formula are embraced several somewhat different stories in which the persecution of innocent wife proceeds from various persons. For instance, in the Italian legends Sta. Guglielma is persecuted by her brother-in-law; Sta. Ulila by her father and mother-in-law; and Stella by her stepmother. See D'Ancona, op. cit., pp. 199, 235, 317. A popular version, somewhat distorted, of the second of the above-mentioned legends may be found in Nerucci, No. 39; of the third in Gonz., No. 24.

More commonly, however, the persecution is on the part of envious sisters or wicked stepmother. The important role played by the last in tales of the North of Europe has its counterpart in those of the South. The following story from Siena (Pitre, La Scatola di Cristallo) will sufficiently illustrate this class.


There was once a widower who had a daughter. This daughter was between ten and twelve years old. Her father sent her to school, and as she was all alone in the world commended her always to her teacher. Now, the teacher, seeing that the child had no mother, fell in love with the father, and kept saying to the girl: "Ask your father if he would like me for a wife." This she said to her every day, and at last the girl said: "Papa, the school-mistress is always asking me if you will marry her." The father said: "Eh! my daughter, if I take another wife, you will have great troubles." But the girl persisted, and finally the father was persuaded to go one evening to the school-mistress' house. When she saw him she was well pleased, and they settled the marriage in a few days. Poor child! how bitterly she had to repent having found a stepmother so ungrateful and cruel to her! She sent her every day out on a terrace to water a pot of basil, and it was so dangerous that if she fell she would go into a large river.

One day there came by a large eagle, and said to her: "What are you doing here?" She was weeping because she saw how great the danger was of falling into the stream. The eagle said to her: "Get on my back, and I will carry you away, and you will be happier than with your new mamma." After a long journey they reached a great plain, where they found a beautiful palace all of crystal; the eagle knocked at the door and said: "Open, my ladies, open! for I have brought you a pretty girl." When the people in the palace opened the door, and saw that lovely girl, they were amazed, and kissed and caressed her. Meanwhile the door was closed, and they remained peaceful and contented.

Let us return to the eagle, who thought she was doing a spite to the stepmother. One day the eagle flew away to the terrace where the stepmother was watering the basil. "Where is your daughter?" asked the eagle. "Eh!" she replied, "perhaps she fell from this terrace and went into the river; I have not heard from her in ten days." The eagle answered: "What a fool you are! I carried her away; seeing that you treated her so harshly I carried her away to my fairies, and she is very well." Then the eagle flew away.

The stepmother, filled with rage and jealousy, called a witch from the city, and said to her: "You see my daughter is alive, and is in the house of some fairies of an eagle which often comes upon my terrace; now you must do me the favor to find some way to kill this stepdaughter of mine, for I am afraid that some day or other she will return, and my husband, discovering this matter, will certainly kill me." The witch answered: "Oh, you need not be afraid of that: leave it to me."

What did the witch do? She had made a little basketful of sweetmeats, in which she put a charm; then she wrote a letter, pretending that it was her father, who, having learned where she was, wished to make her this present, and the letter pretended that her father was so glad to hear that she was with the fairies.

Let us leave the witch who is arranging all this deception, and return to Ermellina (for so the young girl was named). The fairies had said to her: "See, Ermellina, we are going away, and shall be absent four days; now in this time take good care not to open the door to any one, for some treachery is being prepared for you by your stepmother." She promised to open the door to no one: "Do not be anxious, I am well off, and my stepmother has nothing to do with me." But it was not so. The fairies went away, and the next day when Ermellina was alone, she heard a knocking at the door, and said to herself: "Knock away! I don't open to any one." But meanwhile the blows redoubled, and curiosity forced her to look out of the window. What did she see? She saw one of the servant girls of her own home (for the witch had disguised herself as one of her father's servants). "O my dear Ermellina," she said, "your father is shedding tears of sorrow for you, because he really believed you were dead, but the eagle which carried you off came and told him the good news that you were here with the fairies. Meanwhile your father, not knowing what civility to show you, for he understands very well that you are in need of nothing, has thought to send you this little basket of sweetmeats." Ermellina had not yet opened the door; the servant begged her to come down and take the basket and the letter, but she said: "No, I wish nothing!" but finally, since women, and especially young girls, are fond of sweetmeats, she descended and opened the door. When the witch had given her the basket, she said: "Eat this," and broke off for her a piece of the sweetmeats which she had poisoned. When Ermellina took the first mouthful the old woman disappeared. Ermellina had scarcely time to close the door, when she fell down on the stairs.

When the fairies returned they knocked at the door, but no one opened it for them; then they perceived that there had been some treachery, and began to weep. Then the chief of the fairies said: "We must break open the door," and so they did, and saw Ermellina dead on the stairs. Her other friends who loved her so dearly begged the chief of the fairies to bring her to life, but she would not, "for," said she, "she has disobeyed me;" but one and the other asked her until she consented; she opened Ermellina's mouth, took out a piece of the sweetmeat which she had not yet swallowed, raised her up, and Ermellina came to life again.

We can imagine what a pleasure it was for her friends; but the chief of the fairies reproved her for her disobedience, and she promised not to do so again.

Once more the fairies were obliged to depart. Their chief said: "Remember, Ermellina: the first time I cured you, but the second I will have nothing to do with you." Ermellina said they need not worry, that she would not open to any one. But it was not so; for the eagle, thinking to increase her stepmother's anger, told her again that Ermellina was alive. The stepmother denied it all to the eagle, but she summoned anew the witch, and told her that her stepdaughter was still alive, saying: "Either you will really kill her, or I will be avenged on you." The old woman, finding herself caught, told her to buy a very handsome dress, one of the handsomest she could find, and transformed herself into a tailoress belonging to the family, took the dress, departed, went to poor Ermellina, knocked at the door and said: "Open, open, for I am your tailoress." Ermellina looked out of the window and saw her tailoress; and was, in truth, a little confused (indeed, anyone would have been so). The tailoress said, "Come down, I must fit a dress on you." She replied, "No, no; for I have been deceived once." "But I am not the old woman," replied the tailoress, "you know me, for I have always made your dresses." Poor Ermellina was persuaded, and descended the stairs; the tailoress took to flight while Ermellina was yet buttoning up the dress, and disappeared. Ermellina closed the door, and was mounting the stairs; but it was not permitted her to go up, for she fell down dead.

Let us return to the fairies, who came home and knocked at the door; but what good did it do to knock! There was no longer any one there. They began to weep. The chief of the fairies said: "I told you that she would betray me again; but now I will have nothing more to do with her." So they broke open the door, and saw the poor girl with that beautiful dress on; but she was dead. They all wept, because they really loved her. But there was nothing to do; the chief struck her enchanted wand, and commanded a beautiful rich casket all covered with diamonds and other precious stones to appear; then the others made a beautiful garland of flowers and gold, put it on the young girl, and then laid her in the casket, which was so rich and beautiful that it was marvellous to behold. Then the old fairy struck her wand as usual and commanded a handsome horse, the like of which not even the king possessed. Then they took the casket, put it on the horse's back, and led him into the public square of the city, and the chief of the fairies said: "Go, and do not stop until you find some one who says to you: 'Stop, for pity's sake, for I have lost my horse for you.'"

Now let us leave the afflicted fairies, and turn our attention to the horse, which ran away at full speed. Who happened to pass at that moment? The son of a king (the name of this king is not known); and saw this horse with that wonder on its back. Then the king began to spur his horse, and rode him so hard that he killed him, and had to leave him dead in the road; but the king kept running after the other horse. The poor king could endure it no longer; he saw himself lost, and exclaimed: "Stop, for pity's sake, for I have lost my horse for you!" Then the horse stopped (for those were the words). When the king saw that beautiful girl dead in the casket, he thought no more about his own horse, but took the other to the city. The king's mother knew that her son had gone hunting; when she saw him returning with this loaded horse, she did not know what to think. The son had no father, wherefore he was all powerful. He reached the palace, had the horse unloaded, and the casket carried to his chamber; then he called his mother and said: "Mother, I went hunting, but I have found a wife." "But what is it? A doll? A dead woman?" "Mother," replied her son, "don't trouble yourself about what it is, it is my wife." His mother began to laugh, and withdrew to her own room (what could she do, poor mother?).

Now this poor king no longer went hunting, took no diversion, did not even go to the table, but ate in his own room. By a fatality it happened that war was declared against him, and he was obliged to depart. He called his mother, and said: "Mother, I wish two careful chambermaids, whose business it shall be to guard this casket; for if on my return I find that anything has happened to my casket, I shall have the chambermaids killed." His mother, who loved him, said: "Go, my son, fear nothing, for I myself will watch over your casket." He wept several days at being obliged to abandon this treasure of his, but there was no help for it, he had to go.

After his departure he did nothing but commend his wife (so he called her) to his mother in his letters. Let us return to the mother, who no longer thought about the matter, not even to have the casket dusted; but all at once there came a letter which informed her that the king had been victorious, and should return to his palace in a few days. The mother called the chambermaids, and said to them: "Girls, we are ruined." They replied: "Why, Highness?" "Because my son will be back in a few days, and how have we taken care of the doll?" They said: "True, true; now let us go and wash the doll's face." They went to the king's room and saw that the doll's face and hands were covered with dust and fly-specks, so they took a sponge and washed her face, but some drops of water fell on her dress and spotted it. The poor chambermaids began to weep, and went to the queen for advice. The queen said: "Do you know what to do! call a tailoress, and have a dress precisely like this bought, and take off this one before my son comes." They did so, and the chambermaids went to the room and began to unbutton the dress. The moment that they took off the first sleeve, Ermellina opened her eyes. The poor chambermaids sprang up in terror, but one of the most courageous said: "I am a woman, and so is this one; she will not eat me." To cut the matter short, she took off the dress, and when it was removed Ermellina began to get out of the casket to walk about and see where she was. The chambermaids fell on their knees before her and begged her to tell them who she was. She, poor girl, told them the whole story. Then she said: "I wish to know where I am?" Then the chambermaids called the king's mother to explain it to her. The mother did not fail to tell her everything, and she, poor girl, did nothing but weep penitently, thinking of what the fairies had done for her.

The king was on the point of arriving, and his mother said to the doll: "Come here; put on one of my best dresses." In short, she arrayed her like a queen. Then came her son. They shut the doll up in a small room, so that she could not be seen. The king came with great joy, with trumpets blowing, and banners flying for the victory. But he took no interest in all this, and ran at once to his room to see the doll; the chambermaids fell on their knees before him saying that the doll smelled so badly that they could not stay in the palace, and were obliged to bury her. The king would not listen to this excuse, but at once called two of the palace servants to erect the gallows. His mother comforted him in vain: "My son, it was a dead woman." "No, no, I will not listen to any reasons; dead or alive, you should have left it for me." Finally, when his mother saw that he was in earnest about the gallows, she rang a little bell, and there came forth no longer the doll, but a very beautiful girl, whose like was never seen. The king was amazed, and said: "What is this!" Then his mother, the chambermaids, and Ermellina, were obliged to tell him all that had happened. He said: "Mother, since I adored her when dead, and called her my wife, now I mean her to be my wife in truth." "Yes, my son," replied his mother, "do so, for I am willing." They arranged the wedding, and in a few days were man and wife.

* * * * *

Sicilian versions of this story may be found in Pitre, Nos. 57, 58; Gonz., Nos. 2-4. To the copious references in the notes to the stories just mentioned may be added: Fiabe Mant. No. 28; Tuscan Fairy Tales, No. IX.; Nov. fior. pp. 232, 239; De Nino, XLI., XLIX., L.; Nov. tosc. 9. Other European versions are: Grimm, No. 53, "Little Snow-White;" Hahn, No. 103; Lo Rondallayre, No. 46: see also Koehler's notes to Gonz., Nos. 2-4.

The last class of "stepmother" stories which we shall mention is Hahn's Formula 15, "Phryxos and Helle," in which both brother and sister are persecuted by stepmother. A good example of this class is Pitre, No. 283.


There was once a husband and a wife who had two children, a son and a daughter. The wife died, and the husband married a woman who had a daughter blind of one eye. The husband was a farmer, and went to work in a field. The stepmother hated her husband's children, and to get rid of them she baked some bread, and sent it by them to her husband, but directed them to the wrong field, so that they might get lost. When the children reached a mountain they began to call their father, but no one answered. Now the girl was enchanted; and when they came to a spring and the brother wanted to drink, she said to him: "Do not drink of this fountain, or you will become an ass." Afterwards they found another spring, and the brother wanted to drink; but his sister said to him: "Do not drink of it, or you will become a calf." However, the boy would drink, and became a calf with golden horns. They continued their journey, and came to the sea-shore, where there was a handsome villa belonging to the prince. When the prince saw the young girl, and beheld how beautiful she was, he married her, and afterwards asked her what there was about the little calf, and she replied: "I am fond of him because I have brought him up."

Let us now return to her father, who, from the great grief he had on account of his children's disappearance, had gone out to divert himself, and wandered away, gathering fennel. He arrived at last at the villa, where was his daughter who had married the king. His daughter looked out of the window and said to him: "Come up, friend." His daughter had recognized him, and asked: "Friend, do you not know me?" "No, I do not recognize you." Then she said: "I am your daughter, whom you believed lost." She threw herself at his feet, and said: "Pardon me, dear father; I came by chance to this villa, and the king's son was here and married me." The father was greatly consoled at finding his daughter so well married. "Now, my father," said she, "empty this sack of fennel, for I will fill it with gold for you." And then she begged him to bring his wife, and the daughter blind of one eye. The father returned home with his bag full of money, and his wife asked in terror: "Who gave you this money?" He answered: "O wife! do you know that I have found my daughter, and she is the king's wife, and filled this bag with money?" She, instead of being happy, was angry at hearing that her stepdaughter was still alive; however, she said to her husband: "I will go and take my daughter." So they went, the husband, the wife, and the blind daughter, and came to the husband's daughter, who received her stepmother very kindly. But the latter, seeing that the king was away, and that her stepdaughter was alone, seized her and threw her from a window into the sea; and what did she do then? She took her blind daughter and dressed her in the other's clothes, and said to her: "When the king comes and finds you here weeping, say to him: 'The little calf has blinded me with his horn, and I have only one eye!'" Then the stepmother returned to her own house. The king came and found her daughter in bed weeping, and said to her: "Why are you weeping?" "The little calf struck me with his horn and put out one of my eyes." The king cried at once: "Go call the butcher to kill the calf?" When the calf heard that he was to be killed, he went out on the balcony and called to his sister in the sea:—

"Oh! sister, For me the water is heated, And the knives are sharpened."

The sister replied from the sea:—

"Oh! brother, I cannot help you, I am in the dog-fish's mouth."

When the king heard the calf utter these words, he looked out of the window, and when he saw his wife in the sea, he summoned two sailors, and had them take her out and bring her up and restore her. Then he took the blind girl and killed her and cut her in pieces and salted her like tunny-fish, and sent her to her mother. When her husband found it out he left her and went to live with his daughter.

* * * * *

It may not be amiss to mention here another class of stories which come under the formula of "Persecuted Maiden." The class resembles in some respects the story of King Lear. The youngest daughter is persecuted by her father because he thinks she does not love him as much as her older sisters. A good example of this class is Pitre, No. 10, L'Acqua e lu Sali.


A very fine story is related and told to your worships. Once upon a time there was a king with three daughters. These three daughters being at table one day, their father said: "Come now, let us see which of you three loves me." The oldest said: "Papa, I love you as much as my eyes." The second answered: "I love you as much as my heart." The youngest said: "I love you as much as water and salt." The king heard her with amazement: "Do you value me like water and salt? Quick! call the executioners, for I will have her killed immediately." The other sisters privately gave the executioners a little dog, and told them to kill it and rend one of the youngest sister's garments, but to leave her in a cave. This they did, and brought back to the king the dog's tongue and the rent garment: "Royal Majesty, here is her tongue and garment." And his Majesty gave them a reward. The unfortunate princess was found in the forest by a magician, who took her to his house opposite the royal palace. Here the king's son saw her and fell desperately in love with her, and the match was soon agreed upon. Then the magician came and said: "You must kill me the day before the wedding. You must invite three kings, your father the first. You must order the servants to pass water and salt to all the guests except your father." Now let us return to the father of this young girl, who the longer he lived the more his love for her increased, and he was sick of grief. When he received the invitation he said: "And how can I go with this love for my daughter?" And he would not go. Then he thought: "But this king will be offended if I do not go, and will declare war against me some time." He accepted and went. The day before the wedding they killed the magician and quartered him, and put a quarter in each of four rooms, and sprinkled his blood in all the rooms and on the stairway, and the blood and flesh became gold and precious stones. When the three kings came and saw the golden stairs, they did not like to step on them. "Never mind," said the prince, "go up: this is nothing." That evening they were married: the next day they had a banquet. The prince gave orders: "No salt and water to that king." They sat down at table, and the young queen was near her father, but he did not eat. His daughter said: "Royal Majesty, why do you not eat? Does not the food please you?" "What an idea! It is very fine." "Why don't you eat then?" "I don't feel very well." The bride and groom helped him to some bits of meat, but the king did not want it, and chewed his food over and over again like a goat (as if he could eat it without salt!). When they finished eating they began to tell stories, and the king told them all about his daughter. She asked him if he could still recognize her, and stepping out of the room put on the same dress she wore when he sent her away to be killed. "You caused me to be killed because I told you I loved you as much as salt and water: now you have seen what it is to eat without salt and water." Her father could not say a word, but embraced her and begged her pardon. They remained happy and contented, and here we are with nothing.

* * * * *

A Venetian version (Bernoni, No. 14) is translated in the Cornhill Magazine, July, 1875, p. 80, a Bolognese version may be found in Coronedi-Berti, No. 5, and from the Abruzzi in Finamore, Nos. 18, 26. Compare also Pomiglianesi, p. 42. For transmutation of magician's body see Zool. Myth. I. p. 123, Benfey, Pant. I. pp. 477, 478, Ralston, R. F. T. p. 223, and Indian Fairy Tales, p. 164.

Other Sicilian versions are in Gonz., Nos. 48, 49. A Neapolitan is in Pent. V. 8; a Mantuan, in Fiabe Mant. No. 16; a Tuscan, in Archivio per le Trad. pop. I. p. 44, and one from the Abruzzi in Archivio, III. 546. The same story is in Grimm, Nos. 11 and 141. "The Little Brother and Sister" and "The Little Lamb and the Little Fish." See also Hahn, No. 1. The latter part of the story is connected with "False Bride." See note 21 of this chapter.

[11] Other Italian versions are: Pitre, No. 20; Pent. II. 1; Pomiglianesi, pp. 121, 130, 136, 188, 191; Busk, p. 3; Nov. fior. p. 209; Gargiolli, No. 2; Fiabe Mant. No. 20; Bernoni, No. 12; Archivio, I. 525 (Tuscan), III. 368 (Abruzzi), and De Nino, XX. Some points of resemblance are found also in Pent. V. 4; Coronedi-Berti, No. 8; and Finamore, Trad. pop. abruzzesi, No. 12.

Other stories in which children are promised to ogre, demon, etc., are to be found in Pitre, No. 31, Widter-Wolf, No. XIII., and in the various versions of the story of "Lionbruno." See Chap. II., note 13.

For other European versions of the story in the text, see Ralston's R. F. T. p. 141; Grimm, No. 12, "Rapunzel," and Basque Legends, p. 59. For child promised to demon, see Romania, No. 28, p. 531; Grimm, Nos. 31 ("The Girl Without Hands") 55, ("Rumpelstiltskin") 92, ("The King of the Golden Mountain"), and 181 ("The Nix of the Mill-Pond"). See also Hahn, I. p. 47, No. 8.

Some of the incidents of this story are found in those belonging to other classes. The girl's face changed to that of dog, etc., is in Comparetti, No. 3 (furnished with a long beard), and Finamore, Trad. pop. abruzzesi, No. 1, Pent. I. 8 (goat), Nerucci, Nos. 30 (sheep's neck), 37 (buffalo), and Nov. pop. toscani, in Archivio per la Trad. pop. No. 1 (goat). For "flight and obstacles," see Nov. fior. pp. 12, 415, Pent. II. 1, and stories cited by Pitre in his notes to No. 13, also note 25 to this chapter, Basque Legends, p. 120, Orient und Occident, II. p. 103, and Brueyre, p. 111. For "ladder of hair," see Pomiglianesi, p. 126.

[12] Other Italian versions are: Pent. I, 9; Gonz., Nos. 39, 40; Comparetti, No. 46 (Basilicata); De Gub., Sto. Stefano, Nos. 17, 18; Finamore, Trad. pop. abruzzesi, No. 22; De Nino LXV.; Nov. fior, pp. 375, 387 (Milan); Coronedi-Berti, No. 16; Fiabe Mant. No. 19; and Schneller, No. 28. This story, as far as the two brothers (not born miraculously) and liberation of princess are concerned, is in Pent. I. 7, and Widter-Wolf, No. 8.

References to other European versions may be found in the Romania, Nos. 19, pp. 336, 339; 28, p. 563; 32, p. 606: Orient und Occident, II. p. 115 (Koehler to Campbell, No. 4), and Blade, Agenais, No. 2 (p. 148).

As regards the separate traits, as usual many of them are found in other classes of stories: the cloud occurs in Comp., No. 40; children born from fish, De Gub., Zool. Myth. II. 29; for sympathetic objects and life-giving ointment, see last two stories. For "kindness to animals," and "thankful beasts," see Fiabe Mant. Nos. 37, 26, Gonz., No. 6, and the stories belonging to the class "Giant with no heart in his body" mentioned below. The gratitude and help of an animal form the subject of some independent stories, e. g., Strap. III. 1; Pent. I. 3; and Gonz., No. 6, above mentioned; and are also found in the formula "Animal Brothers-in-law." See note 23. For European versions see Orient und Occident, II. p. 101; Brueyre, p. 98; Ralston, R. F. T. p. 98; Benfey, Pant. I. p. 193 et seq.; Basque Legends, p. 81, and Zool. Myth. I. p. 197; II. 45. For transformation into statues, see stories mentioned in note 10, Bernoni, Punt. III. p. 89, Nov. fior. p. 112, and Ortoli, pp. 10, 34.

The most interesting episode, however, is that of "Magician (or Giant) with no heart in his body" (see Chap. III., note 8), which is in the following Italian tales: Pitre, No. 81, Busk, p. 158; Nov. fior. pp. 7, 347; Gonz., Nos. 6, 16; Fiabe Mant. No. 37; and Pomiglianesi, No. 2, p. 21 (v. p. 41). For other references, see Basque Legends, p. 83; Brueyre, pp. 81-83; Ralston, R. F. T., Am. ed., pp. 119-125; Orient und Occident, II. p. 101; Hahn, I. p. 56, No. 31; and Romania, No. 22, p. 234. See also note 18 of this chapter.

The story in our text is not a good example of Hahn's Form. 13, "Andromeda, or Princess freed from Dragon." Some of the other stories cited are much better, notably Widter-Wolf, No. 8, Gonz., Nos. 39, 40, and also Strap., X. 3, and Schneller, No. 39. Hahn's Danae Form. 12 is represented by Nov. tosc. No. 30. The allied myth of Medusa by Nov. tosc. No. 1, and Archivio, I. p. 57.

[13] Versions of this wide-spread story are in Pitre, Otto Fiabe, No. 1; Gonz., Nos. 58, 59, 61, 62, 63 (partly), and 64; Koehler, Italien Volksm. (Sora) No. 1, "Die drei Brueder und die drei befreiten Koenigstochter" (Jahrb. VIII. p. 241); Widter-Wolf, No. 4 (Jahrb. VII. p. 20); Schneller, No. 39; Nov. fior. p. 70, and De Gub., Zool. Myth. II. 187 (Tuscan). Part of our story is also found in Schneller, pp. 188-192, and Pitre, Nos. 83, 84 (var.). To these references, which are given by Pitre, may be added the following: Comparetti, Nos. 19 (Monferrato) partly, 35 (Monferrato), and 40 (Pisa); De Gub., Sto. Stefano, No. 19; Fiabe Mant. Nos. 18, 32 (the latter part), 49 (partly); Tuscan Fairy Tales, No. 3; Finamore, Trad. pop. abruzzesi, No. 29; and Nov. tosc. No. 3.

The trait "underground world" is also found in Busk, p. 141. These stories illustrate sufficiently Hahn's Form. 40, "Descent into the Nether World."

[14] To the stories in Note 13 containing "liberation of hero by eagle" may be added Comparetti, No. 24 (Monferrato). See in general: De Gub., Zool. Myth. II. 186; Benfey, Pant. I. pp. 216, 388; Rivista Orientale, I. p. 27; Orient und Occident, II. p. 299; and Basque Legends, p. 110.

[15] Another version from Avellino is in the same collection, p. 201. Other Italian versions are: Pitre, No. 79; Gonz., No. 51; De Gub., Sto. Stefano, No. 20; De Nino, No. 2; Comparetti, No. 28 (Monferrato); Ive, Fiabe pop. rovignesi, p. 20; No. 3, "El Pumo de uoro;" Schneller, No. 51; and Corazzini, p. 455 (Benevento).

In general see Ive's and Koehler's notes to stories above cited, and Romania, No. 24, p. 565. The corresponding Grimm story is No. 28, "The Singing Bone."

[16] Other Italian versions are: Pitre, Nos. 41, 42; Pent. I. 6; Busk, pp. 26, 31; Comp., No. 23 (Pisa); Fiabe Mant. No. 45; Nov. fior. p. 162 (Milan); Finamore, Trad. pop. abruzzesi, No. II.; and Archivio, II. 185 (Sardinia).

Schneller, No. 24, and Bernoni, No. 8, are connecting links between "Cinderella" and "Allerleirauh." In the former, Cinderella's father asks his three daughters what present he shall make them. Cinderella asks for a sword, and shortly after leaves her home and obtains a situation in a city as servant. In the palace opposite lives a young count, with whom Cinderella falls in love. She obtains a situation in his house. Her sword, which is enchanted, gives her beautiful dresses, and she goes to the balls as in the other versions. The third evening the count slips a costly ring on her finger, which Cinderella uses to identify herself with. Bernoni, No. 8, is substantially the same. After the death of their mother and father Cinderella's sisters treat her cruelly, and she obtains a place as servant in the king's palace, and is aided by the fairies, who take pity upon her. She is identified by means of a ring, and also by her diamond slipper, which she throws to the servants, who are following her to see where she lives.

European versions will be found in the notes to Grimm, No. 21 ("Cinderella"), and W. R. S. Ralston's article, "Cinderella," in the Nineteenth Century, November, 1879.

[17] Other Italian versions are: Pitre, No. 43; Gonz., 38; Pent. II. 6; Busk, pp. 66, 84, 90, 91; Comparetti, No. 57. (Montale); De Gub., Sto. Stefano, No. 3 (see also Rivista di Lett. Pop. I. p. 86); Gradi, Saggio, p. 141; Fiabe Mant. No. 38; Nov. fior. p. 158 (Milan), Finamore, Trad. pop. abruzzesi, No. 3; De Nino, No. 17, and Archivio, I. 190 (Tuscany), II. 26 (Sardinia). Straparola, I. 4, contains the first part of our story, which is also partly found in Coronedi-Berti, No. 3, and Finamore, Trad. pop. abruzzesi, No. 13.

The gifts, which in the story in the text are given the day of the wedding, in the other versions are bestowed before marriage by father, in order to overcome daughter's opposition. The recognition by means of ring is found in the last two stories mentioned in Note 16, in Fiabe Mant. No. 38, above cited, and Nov. fior. p. 158 (Milan). See also Grimm, Nos. 93 ("The Raven"), 101 ("Bearskin"); Hahn, No. 25; Asbj., No. 71 (Tales from the Field, p. 130); and Romania, No. 23, p. 359.

Other European versions of our story will be found mentioned in the notes to Grimm, No. 65 ("Allerleirauh"), to Gonz., No. 38 (II. 229); Orient und Occident, II. 295; D'Ancona, Sacre Rappresent. III. 238; Romania, No. 24, 571; Basque Legends, p. 165, and Ralston's R. F. T. p. 159.

[18] See Gonz., No. 26, and Widter-Wolf, No. 8 (Jahrb. VII. p. 128).

For story in general, see notes to stories just cited, and Cox, Aryan Myth. vol. I. p. 224; II. p. 261, "The Myth of Nisos and Skylla;" Hahn, I. p. 52; and De Gub., Zool. Myth. I. p. 211 et seq.

[19] Pitre, in his notes to No. 71, gives two variants of his story, and mentions a Piedmontese version yet unpublished. Comparetti, No. 54, an analysis of which is given in the text, represents sufficiently Hahn's Form. No. 37, "Strong Hans."

[20] In the version in Pent. IV. 8, after the seven sons have disappeared, their sister goes in search of them, finds them, and they all live happily together until by her fault they are changed into doves, and she is obliged to go to the house of the Mother of Time and learn from her the mode of disenchantment. In a story in Pitre, No. 73, a husband threatens to kill his wife if she does not give birth to a male child.

For other European versions of our story, see Grimm, No. 9, "The Twelve Brothers;" No. 25, "The Seven Ravens;" and No. 49, "The Six Swans;" Melusine, p 419, and Basque Legends, p. 186. Part of the story in text belongs to the Genevieve formula, see notes 8, 10, of this chapter.

[21] The first trait, "Two Sisters," is also found as an independent story, see Chap. II., p. 100, and note 2. "Substitution of false bride" is found without "Two Sisters" in Comp., Nos. 53 (Montale) and 68 (Montale); Fiabe Mant. No. 16; and Gradi, Saggio, p. 141. See note 10 of this chapter. The best example of "substitution" is, as we have said before, Grimm, No. 89, "The Goose-Girl;" see also Romania, No. 24, p. 546. The same trait is found also in a very extensive and interesting class of stories which may be termed, from the usual titles of the stories, "The Three Citrons," some of the versions of which belong to "Forgotten Bride." We give here, however, a version belonging to the class above-mentioned, and which we have taken, on account of its rarity, from Ive, Fiabe pop. rovignesi, p. 3.


Once upon a time there was a king and queen who had a half-witted son. The queen was deeply grieved at this, and she thought to go to the Lord and ask counsel of him what she was to do with this son. The Lord told her to try and do something to make him laugh. She replied: "I have nothing but a jar of oil, unfortunately for me!" The Lord said to her: "Well, give this oil away in charity, for there will come many people; some bent, some straight, some humpbacked, and it may happen that your son will laugh." So the queen proclaimed that she had a jar of oil, and that all could come and take some. And everybody, indeed, hurried there and took the oil down to the last drop. Last of all came an old witch, who begged the queen to give her a little, saying: "Give me a little oil, too!" The queen replied: "Ah, it is all gone, there is no more!" The queen was angry and full of spite because her son had not yet laughed. The old witch said again to the queen: "Let me look in the jar!" The queen opened the jar, and the old woman got inside of it and was all covered with the dregs of the oil; and the queen's son laughed, and laughed, and laughed. The old woman came out, saw the prince laughing, and said to him: "May you never be happy until you go and find the Love of the three Oranges." The son, all eager, said to his mother: "Ah, mother, I shall have no more peace until I go and find the Love of the three Oranges." She answered: "My dear son, how will you go and find the Love of the three Oranges?" But he would go; so he mounted his horse and rode and rode and rode until he came to a large gate. He knocked, and some one within asked: "Who is there?" He replied: "A soul created by God." The one within said: "In all the years that I have been here no one has ever knocked at this gate." The prince repeated: "Open, for I am a soul created by God!" Then an old man came down and opened the gate. He had eyelids that reached to his feet, and he said: "My son, take down those little forks, and lift up my eyelids." The prince did so, and the old man asked: "Where are you going, my son, in this direction?" "I am going to find the Love of the three Oranges." The old man answered: "So many have gone there and never returned! Do you wish not to return, too? My son, take these twigs: you will meet some witches who are sweeping out their oven with their hands; give them these twigs, and they will let you pass." The prince very gratefully took the twigs, mounted his horse and rode away. He journeyed a long time, and at last saw in the distance the witches of immense size who were coming towards him. He threw them the twigs, and they allowed him to pass.

He continued his journey, and arrived at a gate larger than the first. Here the same thing occurred as at the first one, and the old man said: "Well! since you will go, too, take these ropes, on your way you will encounter some witches drawing water with their tresses; throw them these ropes, and they will let you pass."

Everything happened as the old man said; the prince passed the witches, continued his journey and came to a third gate larger than the second. Here an old man with eyelids longer than the other two gave him a bag of bread, and one of tallow, saying: "Take this bag of bread; you will meet some large dogs; throw them the bread and they will let you pass; then you will come to a large gate with many rusty padlocks; then you will see a tower, and in it the Love of the three Oranges. When you reach that place, take this tallow and anoint well the rusty padlocks; and when you have ascended the tower, you will find the oranges hanging from a nail. There you will also find an old woman who has a son who is an ogre and has eaten all the Christians who have come there; you see, you must be very careful!"

The prince, well contented, took the bag of bread and the tallow and rode away. After a long journey, he saw at a distance, three great dogs with their mouths wide open coming to eat him. He threw them the bread, and they let him pass.

He journeyed on until he came to another large gate with many rusty padlocks. He dismounted, tied his horse to the gate, and began to anoint the locks with the tallow, until, after much creaking, they opened. The prince entered, saw the tower, went up and met an old woman who said to him: "Dear son, where are you going? What have you come here for? I have a son who is an ogre, and will surely eat you up." While she was uttering these words, the son arrived. The old woman made the prince hide under the bed; but the ogre perceived that there was some one in the house, and when he had entered, he began to cry:—

"Gein gein, I smell a Christian, Gian gian, I smell a Christian!"

"Son," his mother said, "there is no one here." But he repeated his cry. Then his mother, to quiet him, threw him a piece of meat, which he ate like a madman; and while he was busy eating, she gave the three oranges to the prince, saying: "Take them, my son, and escape at once, for he will soon finish eating his meat, and then he will want to eat you, too." After she had given him the three oranges, she repented of it, and not knowing what else to do, she cried out: "Stairs, throw him down! lock, crush him!" They answered: "We will not, for he gave us tallow!" "Dogs, devour him!" "We will not, for he gave us bread!" Then he mounted his horse and rode away, and the old woman cried after him: "Witch, strangle him!" "I will not, for he gave me ropes!" "Witch, kill him!" "I will not, for he gave me twigs!" The prince continued his journey, and on the way became very thirsty, and did not know what to do. Finally he thought of opening one of the oranges. He did so, and out came a beautiful girl, who said to him:

"Love, give me to drink!"

He replied:

"Love, I have none!"

And she said:

"Love, I shall die!"

And she died at once. The prince threw away the orange, and continued his journey, and soon became thirsty again. In despair he opened another orange, and out sprang another girl more beautiful than the first. She, too, asked for water, and died when the prince told her he had none to give her. Then he continued his way, saying: "The next time I surely do not want to lose her." When he became thirsty again, he waited until he reached a well; then he opened the last orange and there appeared a girl more beautiful than the first two. When she asked for water, he gave her the water of the well; then took her out of the orange, put her on horseback with himself, and started for home. When he was nearly there, he said to her: "See, I will leave you here for a time under these two trees;" one had leaves of gold and silver fruit, and the other gold fruit and silver leaves. Then he made her a nice couch, and left her resting between the two trees. "Now," said he, "I must go to my mother to tell her that I have found you, then I will come for you and we shall be married!" Then he mounted his horse and rode away to his mother.

Now while he was gone an old witch approached the girl and said: "Ah, dear daughter, let me comb your hair." The young girl replied: "No, the like of me do not wish it." Again she said: "Come, my dear daughter, let me comb you!" Tired of being asked so often by the old woman, the girl at last allowed her to comb her hair, and what did that monster of an old witch take it into her head to do. She stuck a pin through the girl's temples from side to side, and the girl at once was changed into a dove. What did this wretch of an old woman then do? She got into the couch in the place of the young girl, who flew away.

Meanwhile the prince reached his mother's house, and she said to him: "Dear son, where have you been? how have you spent all this time?" "Ah, my mother," said he "what a lovely girl I have for my wife!" "Dear son, where have you left her?" "Dear mother, I have left her between two trees, the leaves of one are of gold and the fruit is silver, the leaves of the other one are silver and the fruit gold."

Then the queen gave a grand banquet, invited many guests, and made ready many carriages to go and bring the young girl. They mounted their horses, they entered their carriages, they set out, but when they reached the trees they saw the ugly old woman, all wrinkled, in the couch between the trees, and the white dove on top of them.

The poor prince, you can imagine it! was grieved to the heart, and ashamed at seeing the ugly old woman. His father and mother, to satisfy him, took the old woman, put her in a carriage, and carried her to the palace, where the wedding-feast was prepared. The prince was downhearted, but his mother said to him: "Don't think about it, my son, for she will become beautiful again." But her son could not think of eating or of talking. The dinner was brought on and the guests placed themselves at the round table. Meanwhile, the dove flew up on the kitchen balcony, and began to sing:

"Let the cook fall asleep, Let the roast be burned, Let the old witch be unable to eat of it."

The guests waited for the cook to put the roast on the table. They waited, and waited and waited, and at last they got up and went to the kitchen, and there they found the cook asleep. They called and called him, and at last he awoke, but soon became drowsy again. He said he did not know what was the matter with him, but he could not stand up. He put another roast on the spit, however. Then the dove again flew on the balcony and sang:

"Let the cook fall asleep, Let the roast be burned, Let the old witch be unable to eat of it."

Again the guests waited until they grew weary, and then the groom went to see what was the matter. He found the cook asleep again, and said: "Cook, good cook, what is the matter with you that you sleep?" Then the cook told him that there was a dove that flew on the balcony and repeated:—

"Let the cook fall asleep, Let the roast be burned, Let the old witch be unable to eat of it."—

and that he was immediately seized with drowsiness, and fell asleep at once. The bridegroom went out on the balcony, saw the dove, and said to it: "Cuocula, pretty cuocula, come here and let me see you!" The dove came near him and he caught it, and while he was caressing it he saw the pins planted in its head, one in its forehead, and one in each of its temples. What did he do? He pulled out the pin in the forehead! Then he caressed it again, and pulled out the pins from its temples. Then the dove became a beautiful girl, more beautiful than she was before, and the prince took her to his mother and said: "Here, my mother, this is my bride!" His mother was delighted to see the beautiful girl, and the king, too, was well pleased. When the old witch saw the girl, she cried: "Take me away, take me away, I am afraid!" Then the fair girl told the whole secret how it was. The guests who were present wished to give their opinions as to what should be done with the old woman. One of the highest rank said: "Let her be well greased, and burned!" "Bravo, bravo!" exclaimed the others, "burn her; she must be burned!" So they seized the old woman, had wood brought, and burned her in the midst of the city. Then they returned home, and had a finer wedding than before.

* * * * *

The following are the Italian versions of the above: Pent. IV. 9; Pitre, Otto Fiabe, II. "La Bella di li setti Citri;" Gonz., No. 13; Busk, p. 15; Nov. fior. pp. 305, 308 (Milan); Comparetti, No. 68 (also in Nerucci, p. 111); De Gub., Sto. Stefano, Nos. 4, 5; Prato, Quattro nov. pop. livornesi, No. 1; Archivio, I. 525 (Tuscan); II. 204 (Sardinian); Piedmontese in Mila y Fontanals Observaciones sobre la poesia popular, Barcelona, 1853, p. 179; Coronedi-Berti, No. 11; Corazzini (Benevento), p. 467; and Schneller, No. 19. Part of our story is the same as Pitre, No. 13, "Snow-white-fire-red," given in full in our text. See also Finamore, Trad. pop. abruzzesi, No. 15.

Copious references to other European versions will be found in the notes of Ive, Koehler, etc., to the above versions; to these may be added, Lo Rondallayre, Nos. 18, 37, Liebrecht to Simrock's Deut. Maerchen in Orient und Occident, III. p. 378 (Kalliopi), No. 3, and Indian Fairy Tales, pp. 253, 284.

[22] See Pent. IV. 7; Gonz., Nos. 33, 34; Pitre, Nos. 59, 60 (61); Archivio, II. 36 (Sardinia); De Nino, No. 19; and Schneller, No. 22. The corresponding Grimm story is No. 135, "The White Bride and the Black One." For other European references, see Koehler to Gonz., Nos. 33, 34 (II. p. 225), and Romania, No. 24, pp. 546, 561. See also Chapter II., note 1.

[23] The best version is in the Pent. IV. 3, where the three daughters are married to a falcon, a stag, and a dolphin, who, as in our story, assist their brother-in-law, but are disenchanted without his aid. Other Italian versions are: Pitre, No. 16, and Nov. pop. sicil., Palermo, 1873, No. 1; Gonz., No. 29; Knust (Leghorn), No. 2 (Jahrb. VII. 384); Finamore, Trad. pop. abruzzesi, No. 23; Nov. fior. p. 266; Comparetti, Nos. 4, 58; Archivio, II, p. 42 (Tuscan); Nov. tosc. No. 11.

For other European versions see, besides references in notes to above stories, Hahn, No. 25; Grimm, vol. II. p. 510, to Musaeus' "Die drei Schwestern," and No. 197, "The Crystal Ball;" Benfey, Pant. I. p. 534; and Ralston, R. F. T. p. 96. See also note 12 of this chapter.

As usual, many of the incidents of our stories are found in those belonging to other classes; among the most important are: Prince hidden in musical instrument, Pitre, No. 95; finding princess' place of concealment, Pitre, Nos. 95, 96; Gonz., No. 68; and Grimm, No. 133; "The Shoes which were danced to Pieces;" princess recognized among others dressed alike, or all veiled; Nov. fior. p. 411 (Milan); Grimm, No. 62, "The Queen Bee," Ralston, R. F. T. p. 141, note; Basque Legends, p. 125; Orient und Occident, II. pp. 104, 107-114; tasks set hero to win wife, Pitre, Nos. 21, 95, 96; Gonz., No. 68; De Gub., Sto. Stefano, No. 8; Basque Legends, p. 120; Orient und Occident, II. 103; and Romania, No. 28, p. 527. This last incident is found also in "Forgotten Bride," see note 25 of this chapter.

[24] For other European references to the first class, "riddle solved by suitor," see Jahrb. V. 13; Grimm, No. 114, "The Cunning Little Tailor," and Hahn, I. p. 54.

Other Italian versions of the second class are: Comparetti, Nos. 26 (Basilicata), 59 (Monferrato); Nerucci, p. 177 (partly); and Widter-Wolf, No. 15 (Jahrb. VII. 269). See also Koehler's notes to last-mentioned story, and also to Campbell, No. 22, in Orient und Occident, II. 320; Grimm, No. 22, "The Riddle;" and Prof. F. J. Child, English and Scottish Popular Ballads, Part II. p. 414.

For other stories containing riddles belonging to other classes than the above, see Bernoni, Punt. II. p. 54; Gradi, Vigilia, p. 8; Corazzini, p. 432; Finamore, Trad. pop. abruzzesi, No. 7; and Koehler's article, Das Raethselmaerchen von dem ermordeten Geliebten in the Rivista di Lett. pop. I. p. 212. A peculiar version of the second class may be found in Ortoli, p. 123, where a riddle very much like the one in the text is proposed by suitor to princess' father.

[25] Other Italian versions are: Gonz., Nos. 14, 54, 55; Pent. II. 7, III. 9 (forgets bride on touching shore); Pomiglianesi, p. 136 (the first part belongs to the class of "Fair Angiola;") Busk, p. 3 (first part same as last story); De Gub., Sto. Stefano, No. 5 (see also Rivista di Lett. pop. I. p. 84); Coronedi-Berti, No. 13 (this is one of the few "Three Citrons" stories containing episode of bride forgotten at mother's kiss); Schneller, No. 27; Finamore, Trad. pop. abruzzesi, No. 4 (mother's kiss); Pitre, vol. IV. p. 285, gives an Albanian version of our story. The imprecation and mother's kiss are also found in another of the "Three Citrons" stories, Gonz., No. 13. For obstacles to flight, see Note 11 of this chapter.

For other European versions see Koehler's notes to Gonz., No. 14; to Campbell, No. 2 (Orient und Occident, II. 103); to Kreutzwald-Loewe, No. 14; Hahn, I. p. 55; Romania, Nos. 19, p. 354, 20, p. 527; Grimm, Nos. 56, ("Sweetheart Roland"), 113 ("The Two Kings' Children"), 186 ("The True Bride"), 193 ("The Drummer;") Basque Legends, p. 120; Ralston, R. F. T. pp. 119, 131; Brueyre, p. 111; and B. Schmidt, Griechische Maerchen, Sagen und Volkslieder, Leipzig, 1877, cited by Cosquin, Romania, No. 28, p. 543. See also in general, Cox, Aryan Myth. I. p. 158.

[26] The same incident is found in Gonz., No. 6, and Pitre, No. 61. See Koehler's notes to Gonz., No. 6; Grimm, No. 193 ("The Drummer"); Romania, No. 28, p. 527; and Hahn, No. 15.

[27] Another Venetian version is in Bernoni, No. 3. See also Nov. fior. p. 290; Gradi, Vigilia, p. 53; Fiabe Mant. No. 39; and Schneller, No. 32.

For other European versions, see Grimm, No. 46 ("Fitcher's Bird"), Koehler's notes to Widter-Wolf, No. 11 (Jahrb. VII. 148); and Ralston, R. F. T. p. 97.

[28] See Pitre, No. 19, Nuovo Saggio, No. 4; Nov. fior. pp. 7, 12; and Nerucci, No. 49. Compare also Gonz., Nos. 10 and 22 (already mentioned, "The Robber who had a Witch's Head"), and Comparetti, No. 18 (Pisa).

For other references to this class, see Grimm, No. 40 ("The Robber-Bridegroom") and Romania, No. 22, p. 236.

[29] See Chap. II., note 4. For other references to this class, see Grimm, No. 3 ("Our Lady's Child"), and Romania, No. 28, p. 568.

[30] The seventh version is from Bologna and is entitled La Fola del Muretein ("The Story of the Little Moor"), and was published by Coronedi-Berti in the Rivista Europea, Florence, 1873. It is briefly as follows: A queen has no children and visits a witch who gives her an apple to eat, telling her that in due time she will bear a son. One of the queen's maids eats the peel and both give birth to sons; the maid's being called the Little Moor from resembling the dark red color of the apple peel. The two children grow up together, and when the prince goes off on his travels his friend the little Moor accompanies him. They spend the night in an enchanted castle and the friend hears a voice saying that the prince will conquer in a tournament and marry the king's daughter, but on their wedding night a dragon will devour the bride, and whoever tells of it will become marble. The friend saves the princess' life, but is thrown into prison, and when he exculpates himself becomes marble. He can only be restored to life by being anointed with the blood of a cock belonging to a wild man (om salvadgh) living on a certain mountain. The prince performs the difficult feat of stealing the cock and healing his friend.

For other European versions, see Grimm, No. 6 ("Faithful John"); Hahn, No. 29; Wolf, Proben Port. und Cat. Volksm. p. 52; Lo Rondallayre, No. 35 ("Lo bon criat"); Old Deccan Days, p. 98; and in general, Benfey, Pant. I. p. 417, and Koehler in Weimarische Beitraege zur Lit. und Kunst, Weimar, 1865, p. 192 et seq.

[31] See Pitre, vol. I. pp. xcix., ciii.; IV. pp. 382, 430, and Comparetti, No. 44. A version from the Abruzzi may be found in Finamore, No. 38. See also Grimm, No. 191 ("The Robber and his Sons"); Basque Legends, p. 4; Dolopathos ed. Oesterley, pp. xxii., 65; and in general, Orient und Occident, II. 120, and Benfey, Pant. I. 295.

[32] Another Sicilian version is in Gonz., No. 83. Other versions are: Pent. III. 7; Nerucci, p. 341; De Nino, No. 30; Fiabe Mant. No. 4; Nov. fior. p. 340 (Milan); and Widter-Wolf, No. 9 (Jahrb. VII. p. 134). There are other similar stories in which a person is forced by those envious of him to undertake dangerous enterprises: see Pitre, Nos. 34, 35; Comparetti, No. 16; Tuscan Fairy Tales, No. 8, De Nino, No. 39, etc. Strap., I. 2, also offers many points of resemblance to our story.

For other versions, see Grimm, No. 192 ("The Master-Thief"), and Koehler's notes to Widter-Wolf, No. 9.

[33] The version in Nov. fior. p. 574, is from Florence, the others, pp. 575 (the story in our text), 577, 578, 579, are from Milan, and closely resemble each other.

[34] Compare Pitre, No. 83, and De Nino, No. 43. Tyrolese versions are in Schneller, Nos. 53, 54. See also Widter-Wolf, No. 2 (Jahrb. VII. 13), and Jahrb. VIII. p. 246, Italien. Maerchen aus Sora, No. 2. For additional European versions, see Jahrb. ut supra, and V. 7; Romania, Nos. 19, p. 350; 24, p. 562; 28, p. 556; and Grimm, Nos. 20 ("The Valiant Little Taylor"), and 183 ("The Giant and the Tailor") Some of the episodes mentioned in the text may be found in a Corsican story in Ortoli, p. 204, where, however, instead of a giant, a priest is outwitted by his servant.



[1] This story is found in the Pent. I. 10. In Schneller, No. 29, the king falls in love with a frog (from hearing its voice without seeing it) which is transformed by the fairies into a beautiful girl. The good wishes of the fairies are found in Pitre, Nos. 61, 94. See also Pent. I. 3; III. 10, and Chap. I. of the present work, note 22. For gifts by the fairies, see Pitre, vol. I. p. 334, and the following note.

[2] This story is often found as an introduction to "False Bride;" see Chap. I., note 21. Sicilian versions may be found in Pitre, Nos. 62, 63; Neapolitan, Pent. III. 10; from the Abruzzi in Finamore, No. 48; De Nino, No. 18; Tuscan, Gradi, Vigilia, p. 20, De Gub., Sto. Stefano, No. 1, Zool. Myth. II. p. 62, note, Tuscan Fairy Tales, pp. 9, 18, Corazzini, p. 409, Nov. tosc. No. 8, La Tinchina dell' alto Mare; Venetian, Bernoni, XIX.; and Tyrolese, Schneller, Nos. 7, 8.

In several of the Tuscan versions (Gradi, Zool. Myth., Tuscan Fairy Tales, p. 9, and Nov. fior. p. 202, which is composed of "Two Sisters" and "True Bride") instead of fairies the sisters find cats who bestow the varying gifts.

Other European versions of this story will be found in Grimm, No. 24, "Old Mother Holle;" Norwegian in Asbj. & Moe, No. 15; [Dasent, Pop. Tales from the Norse, p. 103, "The Two Step-Sisters"] French in Blade, Contes agen. p. 149, and Cosquin, Contes pop. lorrains, No. 48 (Romania, No. 32, p. 564). The Oriental versions are mentioned by Cosquin in his notes to the last named story; see also Benfey, Pant. I. p. 219.

[3] Other Tuscan versions are in Gradi, Saggio di Letture varie, p. 125, and Nov. tosc. No. 22; Sicilian and Roman versions may be found in Pitre, No. 64, and Busk, p. 96.

French versions will be found in Melusine, pp. 113 (conte picard) and 241 (conte de l' Amienois). A Japanese version is given in the same periodical, p. 161. An Irish version is in Croker, Fairy Legends etc. (translated in Brueyre, p. 206); and a Turkish version is given in The Wonder World Stories, New York, Putnam, 1877, p. 139. Other French and Oriental versions are noticed in Melusine, pp. 161, 241. A somewhat similar German version is in Grimm, No. 182. "The Presents of the Little Folk."

[4] This story somewhat resembles Gonz., No. 20, mentioned in Chap. I., note 29. Another Sicilian version is in Pitre, No. 86. I have been unable to find any other Italian parallels. Personification of one's Fate maybe found in Gonz., Nos. 52, 55, Pitre, No. 12; and of Fortune in Pitre, No. 29, and Comparetti, No. 50. See Indian Fairy Tales, p. 263.

[5] Sicilian versions are in Pitre, No. 105, and Gonz., No. 18. In the latter version the king drives his daughter from the palace and the rejected suitor disguises himself, follows her, and marries her. A Neapolitan version is in the Pent. IV. 10; Tuscan in Gradi, Vigilia, p. 97; Nerucci, p. 211; and Jahrb. VII. p. 394 (Knust, No. 9).

Other European versions are: Grimm No. 52, "King Thrushbeard;" Norwegian, Asbj. & Moe, No. 45, and Grundtwig, III. [1]; French, Romania, No. 32, p. 552 (Contes pop. lorrains, No. 45); and Greek, Hahn, No. 113. See also Tibetan Tales, London, 1882, Ralston's notes, p. lviii.

[6] Other versions of this story are: Sicilian, Pitre, No. 67, and Gonz., No. 28; Tuscan, Archivio, I. pp. 41, 65, Nov. tosc. No. 7, Abruzzi, De Nino, No. 1. For the first part of the story, see Nov. fior. pp. 332-333.

[7] I have followed in this division Imbriani, Pomiglianesi, p. 89.

[8] Another Sicilian version, which, however, does not contain the trait "cure by laughing," is in Pitre, No. 28. Gonz., No. 30, may be mentioned here, as it contains a part of our story. The magic gifts in it are a carpet that transports the owner wherever he wishes to go, a purse always full, and a horn that when one blows in the little end covers the sea with ships, when one blows in the big end, the ships disappear. Neapolitan versions are in Imbriani, Pomiglianesi, pp. 62, 83; Roman in Busk, pp. 129, 136, comp. p. 146; and Tuscan in Frizzi, Novella montanina, Florence, A. Ciardelli e C. 1876, Nerucci, p. 471 Archivio per le Trad. pop. I. p. 57, and Nov. tosc. No. 16. De Gub., Zool. Myth. I. p. 288, n. 3, gives a version from the Marches, and there is a Bolognese version in Coronedi-Berti, No. 9. Other versions may be found in Finamore, Trad. pop. abruzzesi, No. 30, and Bolognini, p. 21. For other European versions, see Gesta Rom. ed. Oesterley, cap. cxx.; Grimm, No. 122; Campbell, No. 10, "The Three Soldiers" (see Koehler's notes to this story in Orient und Occident, II. p. 124, and Brueyre, p. 138); Cosquin, Contes pop. lorrains, Nos. 11 (Rom. No. 19, p. 361) and 42 (Rom. No. 28, p. 581); and finally, Kreutzwald, Ehstnische Maerchen, No. 23. Comp. also De Gub., Zool. Myth. I. p. 182, and Ralston's notes to Schiefner's Tibetan Tales, p. liv.

[9] I have been unable to find any European parallels to this form of the story.

[10] Another version of this story is found in the same collection, p. 359. Other Tuscan versions are found in De Gub., Sto. Stefano, No. 21, Gradi, Saggio di Letture varie, p. 181, Nov. tosc. No. 29, and Comparetti, No. 7 (Mugello). The other versions are as follows: Sicilian, Pitre, No. 29 (comp. No. 30), Gonz., No. 52; Neapolitan, Pent. I. 1 (Comp. Pomiglianesi, p. 116); Abruzzi, Finamore, No. 37; De Nino, No. 6; Ortoli, pp. 171, 178; Venetian, Bernoni, No. 9; the Marches, Comp., No. 12; and Tyrolese, Schneller, p. 28.

For the other European parallels, see Grimm, No. 36, "The Table, the Ass, and the Stick;" Melusine (conte breton), p. 130; Cosquin, Contes pop. lorrains, No. 14 (Rom. No. 19, p. 333); De Gub., Zool. Myth. II. p. 262 (Russian); Brueyre, p. 48 (B. Gould, Yorkshire, Appendix to Henderson's Folk-Lore of the Northern Counties of England); Asbj. & Moe, No. 7 [Dasent, Pop. Tales from the Norse, p. 261, "The Lad who went to the North Wind"], and Old Deccan Days, No. 12.

[11] Another Sicilian version is in Gonz., No. 65, with same title and contents. A Neapolitan version is in the Pent. II. 4, where the fox is replaced by a cat. This is also the case in the versions from the Abruzzi, Finamore, No. 46, De Nino, No. 53; in the Florentine versions in Nov. fior. p. 145, Nov. tosc. No. xii. var.; and in the Tyrolese given by Schneller, p. 122 ("Il Conte Martin dalla gatta"). In another story in Schneller, p. 124 ("L'Anello"), a youth possesses a magic ring and a dog and cat which recover the ring when stolen from its owner. Older and more interesting than the above versions is the one in Straparola, XI. 1. We give it here in full in order that our readers may compare with it the version in our text and Perrault's "Puss in Boots," which is the form in which the story has become popular all over Europe. The following translation is from the edition of 1562 (Venice).



There was once in Bohemia a very poor lady named Soriana, who had three sons: one was called Dusolino, the other Tesifone, and the third Constantine the Lucky. She owned nothing valuable in the world but three things: a kneading-trough, a rolling-board, and a cat. When Soriana, laden with years, came to die, she made her last testament, and left to Dusolino, her eldest son, the kneading-trough, to Tesifone the rolling-board, and to Constantine the cat. When the mother was dead and buried, the neighbors, as they had need, borrowed now the kneading-trough, now the rolling-board; and because they knew that the owners were very poor, they made them a cake, which Dusolino and Tesifone ate, giving none to Constantine, the youngest brother. And if Constantine asked them for anything, they told him to go to his cat, which would get it for him. Wherefore poor Constantine and his cat suffered greatly. Now the cat, which was enchanted, moved to compassion for Constantine, and angry at the two brothers who treated him so cruelly, said: "Constantine, do not be downcast, for I will provide for your support and my own." And leaving the house, the cat went out into the fields, and, pretending to sleep, caught a hare that passed and killed it. Thence, going to the royal palace and seeing some of the courtiers, the cat said that she wished to speak with the king, who, when he heard that a cat wished to speak to him, had her shown into his presence, and asked her what she wished. The cat replied that her master, Constantine, had sent him a hare which he had caught. The king accepted the gift, and asked who this Constantine was. The cat replied that he was a man who had no superior in goodness, beauty, and power. Wherefore the king treated the cat very well, giving her to eat and drink bountifully. When the cat had satisfied her hunger, she slyly filled with her paw (unseen by any one) the bag that hung at her side, and taking leave of the king, carried it to Constantine. When the brothers saw the food over which Constantine exulted, they asked him to share it with them; but he refused, rendering them tit for tat. On which account there arose between them great envy, that continually gnawed their hearts. Now Constantine, although handsome in his face, nevertheless, from the privation he had suffered, was covered with scabs and scurf, which caused him great annoyance. But going with his cat to the river, she licked him carefully from head to foot, and combed his hair, and in a few days he was entirely cured.

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