1237798Italian Popular Tales — Notes1885Thomas Frederick Crane



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 mediæval literature, see an article by the writer, "Two Mediæval 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, Göttingen, 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 Bibliothèque Elzevirienne of P. Jannet, Paris, 1857. There is a German translation with valuable notes of the märchen 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 Botté" 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 (Pitrè), 1714, 1722, 1728, 1747, 1749 (Liebrecht), 1788, Collezione di Tutti i Poemi, etc.; Rome, 1679, 1797 (Pitrè). 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 Römische Studien, Zürich, 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; Pitrè, 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 Hausmärchen. 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. Lhéritier. See the latest edition of Perrault's tales, Les Contes de Charles Perrault, par André Lefèvre, 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., Pitrè, vol. IV. pp. 372, 375; II., Pitrè, ibid. p. 381; III., Nov. fior. pp. 93, 112, Pitrè, No. 36; V., Pitrè, 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. Pitrè, 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 Imbriana, Pomiglianesi, p. 129:—

No' nce n'è cchiù.

(Cuccurucù, there is no more.)

Ss' 'o vuo' cchiù bello, t' o dice tu.

(Cuccurucù, if you want it finer, tell it yourself.) See also Pitrè, 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 Pitrè, 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 Pitrè 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 Pitrè, 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, Pitrè, 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, Pitrè, 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 Pitrè, 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 Köhler'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 Köhler's notes to Gonz., No. 15 (II. 214), and to Bladé, 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 Pitrè, No. 82, and in a Calabrian story in De Gub., Zoöl. 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; Pitrè, 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 Köhler 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. Pitrè, 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 Zoöl. 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 Zoöl. 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 Pitrè, No. 56, "The Serpent." To Pitrè'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 Köhler'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 Pitrè, 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 Köhler's notes to Widter-Wolf, and Ive's notes to above cited story.

8. This class is named by Hahn from Geneviève de Brabant, whose legend may be found in Dict. des Légendes, 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 Pitrè, Nuovo Saggio, No. 1. To the references in Pitrè, 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 Pitrè, No. 11, Pent. I. 7, La Posillechejata, 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 Köhler's notes in Mélusine, 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 rôle played by the last in tales of the North of Europe has its counterpart in those of the South. The following story from Siena (Pitrè, 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, any one 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 Pitrè, 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 Köhler'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 Pitrè, 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 seashore, 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 Pitrè, 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 Zoöl. 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: Pitrè, 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 Pitrè, No. 31, Widter-Wolf, No. XIII., and in the various versions of the story of "Liombruno." 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 Pitrè 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 (Köhler to Campbell, No. 4), and Bladé, 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., Zoöl. 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 Zoöl. 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: Pitrè, 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 Danaë 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 Pitrè, Otto Fiabe, No. 1; Gonz., Nos. 58, 59, 61, 62, 63 (partly), and 64; Köhler, Italien Volksm. (Sora) No. 1, "Die drei Brüder und die drei befreiten Königstöchter" (Jahrb. VIII. p. 241); Widter-Wolf, No. 4 (Jahrb. VII. p. 20); Schneller, No. 39; Nov. fior. p. 70, and De Gub., Zoöl. Myth. II. 187 (Tuscan). Part of our story is also found in Schneller, pp. 188–192, and Pitrè, Nos. 83, 84 (var.). To these references, which are given by Pitrè, 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., Zoöl. 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: Pitrè, 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 Köhler'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: Pitrè, 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: Pitrè, 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 Fjeld, 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., Zoöl. Myth. I. p. 211 et seq.

19. Pitrè, 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 Pitrè, 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;" Mélusine, p. 419, and Basque Legends, p. 186. Part of the story in text belongs to the Geneviève 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:—

"Geîn geîn, I smell a Christian,
Giàn giàn, 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 are of 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: "Cuócula, pretty cuócula, 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; Pitrè, 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 Pitrè, 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, Köhler, etc., to the above versions; to these may be added, Lo Rondallayre, Nos. 18, 37, Liebrecht to Simrock's Deut. Märchen 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; Pitrè, 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 Köhler 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: Pitrè, 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 Musäus' "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, Pitrè, No. 95; finding princess' place of concealment, Pitrè, 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, Pitrè, 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 Köhler'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 Köhler's article, Das Räthselmärchen 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); Pitrè, 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 Köhler's notes to Gonz., No. 14; to Campbell, No. 2 (Orient und Occident, II. 103); to Kreutzwald-Löwe, 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 Märchen, 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 Pitrè, No. 61. See Köhler'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"), Köhler's notes to Widter-Wolf, No. 11 (Jahrb. VII. 148); and Ralston, R. F. T. p. 97.

28. See Pitrè, 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 dêl 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 Köhler in Weimarische Beiträge zur Lit. und Kunst, Weimar, 1865, p. 192 et seq.

31. See Pitrè, 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 Pitrè, 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 Köhler'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 Pitrè, 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. Märchen 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 Pitrè, 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 Pitrè, 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 Pitrè, 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, Zoöl. 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, Zoöl. 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 Bladé, 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 Pitrè, No. 64, and Busk, p. 96.

French versions will be found in Mélusine, pp. 113 (conte picard) and 241 (conte de l'Amiénois). 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 Mélusine, 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 Pitrè, No. 86. I have been unable to find any other Italian parallels. Personification of one's Fate may be found in Gonz., Nos. 52, 55, Pitrè, No. 12; and of Fortune in Pitrè, No. 29, and Comparetti, No. 50. See Indian Fairy Tales, p. 263.

5. Sicilian versions are in Pitrè, 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, Pitrè, 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 Pitrè, 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., Zoöl. 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 Köhler'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 Märchen, No. 23. Comp. also De Gub., Zoöl. 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, Pitrè, 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;" Mélusine (conte breton), p. 130; Cosquin, Contes pop. lorrains, No. 14 (Rom. No. 19, p. 333); De Gub., Zoöl. 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).


Soriana dies and leaves three sons: Dusolino, Tesifone, and Constantine the Lucky, who, by virtue of a cat, acquires a powerful kingdom.

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.

The cat (as we said above) continued to carry gifts to the royal palace, and thus supported her master. But after a time she wearied of running up and down so much, and feared that she would annoy the king's courtiers; so she said to her master: "Sir, if you will do what I order, I will make you rich in a short time." "How?" said her master. The cat replied: "Come with me, and do not ask any more, for I am ready to enrich you." So they went together to the stream, which was near the royal palace, and the cat stripped her master, and with his agreement threw him into the river, and then began to cry out in a loud voice: "Help! help! Messer Constantine is drowning." The king hearing this, and remembering that he had often received presents from him, sent his people at once to aid him. When Messer Constantine was taken out of the water and dressed in fine clothes, he was taken to the king, who received him cordially, and asked him why he had been thrown into the river. Constantine could not answer for grief; but the cat, which was always at his side, said: "Know, O king, that some robbers learned from spies that my master was loaded with jewels, which he was coming to present to you. They robbed him of all, and threw him into the river, thinking to kill him, but thanks to these gentlemen he has escaped from death." The king, hearing this, ordered, that he should be well cared for; and seeing that he was handsome, and knowing him to be wealthy, he concluded to give him Elisetta, his daughter, for a wife, endowing her with jewels and most beautiful garments. After the wedding festivities had been ended, the king had ten mules loaded with money, and five with costly apparel, and sent his daughter to her husband's home, accompanied by a great retinue. Constantine, seeing that he had become so wealthy and honored, did not know where to lead his wife, and took counsel with his cat, which said: "Do not fear, my master, for we shall provide for everything." So they all set out gayly on horseback, and the cat ran hastily before them; and having left the company some distance behind, met some horsemen, to whom she said: "What are you doing here, wretched men? Depart quickly, for a large band of people are coming, and will take you prisoners. They are near by: you can hear the noise of the neighing horses." The horsemen said in terror: "What must we do, then?" The cat replied: "Do this,—if you are asked whose horsemen you are, answer boldly, Messer Constantine's, and you will not be molested." Then the cat went on, and found a large flock of sheep, and did the same with their owners, and said the same thing to all those whom she found in the road. The people who were escorting Elisetta asked the horsemen: "Whose knights are you," and "whose are so many fine flocks?" and all with one accord replied: "Messer Constantine's." Then those who accompanied the bride said: "So then, Messer Constantine, we are beginning to enter your territory." And he nodded his head, and replied in like manner to all that he was asked. Wherefore the company judged him to be very wealthy. At last the cat came to a very fine castle, and found there but few servants, to whom she said: "What are you doing, good men; do you not perceive the destruction which is impending?" "What?" asked the servants. "Before an hour passes, a host of soldiers will come here and cut you to pieces. Do you not hear the horses neighing? Do you not see the dust in the air? If you do not wish to perish, take my advice and you will be saved. If any one asks you whose this castle is, say, Messer Constantine's." So they did; and when the noble company reached the handsome castle they asked the keepers whose it was, and all answered boldly Messer Constantine the Lucky's. Then they entered, and were honorably entertained. Now the castellan of that place was Signor Valentino, a brave soldier, who, a short time before, had left the castle to bring home the wife he had lately married; and to his misfortune, before he reached the place where his wife was he was overtaken on the way by a sudden and fatal accident, from which he straightway died, and Constantine remained master of the castle. Before long, Morando, King of Bohemia, died, and the people elected for their king Constantine the Lucky because he was the husband of Elisetta, the dead king's daughter, to whom the kingdom fell by right of succession. And so Constantine, from being poor and a beggar, remained Lord and King, and lived a long time with his Elisetta, leaving children by her to succeed him in the kingdom.

For copious references to other European versions, see Köhler's notes to Gonz., No. 65 (II. p. 242), and Benfey, Pant. I. p. 222.

12. The earliest Italian versions are in the Cento nov. ant., Testo Papanti (Romania, No. 10, p. 191), and Straparola, XI. 2. Later popular versions, besides the Istrian one in the text, are: Nerucci, p. 430, and Bernoni, III. p. 91, both of which are much distorted. Some of the episodes are found in other stories, as, for instance, the division of the property, including the wife, which occurs in Gonz., No. 74. "The Thankful Dead" is also the subject of an Italian novel, Novella di Messer Danese e di Messer Gigliotto, Pisa, 1868 (privately printed), and of a popular poem, Istoria bellissima di Stellante Costantina composta da Giovanni Orazio Brunette

The extensive literature of this interesting story can best be found in D'Ancona's notes to the version in the Cento nov. ant., cited above. To these may be added: Ive's notes to the story in the text, Cosquin's notes to No. 19 of the Contes pop. lorrains (Rom. No. 24, p. 534). and Nisard, Hist, des Livres pop. II. p. 450. Basque and Spanish versions have been published recently, the former in Webster's Basque Legends, pp. 146, 151, and the latter in Caballero, Cuentos, oraciones, etc., Leipzig, 1878, p. 23. A version from Mentone may be found in the Folk-Lore Record, vol. III. p. 48, "John of Calais."

13. In the original it is la Voria, which in Sicilian means "breeze," but I take it to be the same as Boria in Italian (Lat. Boreas-æ), the North Wind.

14. Other Italian versions are: Nov. fior. p. 440; Archivio, III. 542 (Abruzzi); Pitrè, No. 31; Tuscan Fairy Tales, No. 10, p. 102; De Nino, No. 69; and Widter-Wolf, No. 10 (Jahrbuch, VII. 139). See also Prato, Una nov. pop. monferrina, Como, 1882; and Finamore, Trad. pop. abruzzesi, Nos. 17, 19.

References to other European versions will be found in Köhler's notes to Widter-Wolf, No. 10. See also Grimm, No. 92; Ralston's R. F. T. p. 132, and Chap. I., note 11, of the present work.

15. A work of this kind, similar in scope to Nisard's Hist. des Livres populaires, is greatly to be desired, and ought to be undertaken before the great changes in the social condition of Italy shall have rendered such a task difficult, if not impossible.



1. There are three Italian translations of the Pantschatantra, all of the XVI. century. Two, Discorsi degli Animali, by Angelo Firenzuola, 1548, and La Filosofia Morale, by Doni, 1552, represent the Hebrew translation by Rabbi Joel (1250), from which they are derived through the Directorium humanae vitae of Johannes de Capua (1263–78); the third, Del Governo de' Regni, by G. Nuti, 1583, is from the Greek version of Simeon Seth (1080). A full account of the various translations of the Pantschatantra may be found in Max Müller's Chips, Vol. IV. p. 165, "The Migration of Fables." See also Benfey, Pant. I. pp. 1–19, Buddhist Birth Stories; or, Jataka Tales, By V. Fausböll and T. W. Rhys Davids, Boston, 1880, p. xciii., and Landau, Die Quellen des Decamerone, mentioned in the following note.

The Seven Wise Masters was also translated into Italian at an early date. One version, Il Libro dei Sette Savj di Roma, Pisa, 1864, edited by Prof. A. D'Ancona, is a XIII. century translation from a French prose version (Cod. 7974, Bib. nat.); another, of the same date, Storia d' una crudele Matrigna, Bologna, 1862, is from an uncertain source, from which is probably derived a third version, Il Libro dei Sette Savi di Roma tratto da un codice del secolo XIV. per cura di Antonio Cappelli, Bologna, 1865. The MS. from which the version edited by Della Lucia in 1832 (reprinted at Bologna, 1862) was taken has been recently discovered and printed in Operette inedite o rare, Libreria Dante, Florence, 1883, No. 3. A fourth version of the end of the XIII. or the beginning of the XIV. century is still inedited, it is mentioned by D'Ancona in the Libro dei Sette Savj, p. xxviii., and its contents given. The latest and most curious version is I Compassionevoli Avvenimenti di Erasto, a work of the XVI. century (first edition, Venice, 1542) which contains four stories found in no other version of the Seven Wise Masters. The popularity of this version, the source of which is unknown, was great. See D'Ancona, op. cit., pp. xxxi.–xxxiv.

The Disciplina Clericalis was not known, apparently, in Italy as a collection, but the separate stories were known as early as Boccaccio, who borrowed the outlines of three of his stories from it (VII. 4; VIII. 10; X. 8). Three of the stories of the Disc. Cler. are also found in the Ital. trans. of Frate Jacopo da Cessole's book on Chess (Volgarizzamento del libro de' Costumi e degli offizii de' nobili sopra il giuoco degli Scachi, Milan, 1829) and reprinted in Libro di Novelle Antiche, Bologna, 1868, Novelle III., IV., and VI. This translation is of the XII. century. Other stories from the Disc. Cler. are found in the Cento nov. ant., Gualt., LIII., XXXI., LXVI., Borg., LXXIV. (Cent. nov., Biagi, pp. 226, 51, 58); and in Cintio, Gli Ecatommiti, I, 3; VII. 6.

2. It has been generally supposed that the Oriental element was introduced into European literature from Spain through the medium of the French. We shall see later that this was the case with the famous collection of tales just mentioned, the Disciplina Clericalis. Oriental elements are also found in the French fabliaux which are supposed to have furnished Boccaccio with the plots of a number of his novels. See Landau, Die Quellen des Decamerone, 2d ed., Vienna, 1884, p. 107. Professor Bartoli in his I Precursori del Boccaccio e alcune delle sue Fonti, Florence, 1876, endeavors to show that Boccaccio may have taken the above mentioned novels from sources common to them and the French fabliaux. It is undeniable that there was in the Middle Ages an immense mass of stories common to the whole western world, and diffused by oral tradition as well as by literary means, and it is very unsafe to say that any one literary version is taken directly from another. Sufficient attention has not been paid to the large Oriental element in European entertaining literature prior to the Renaissance. In early Italian literature besides Boccaccio, the Cento novelle antiche abound in Oriental elements. See D'Ancona, Le Fonti del Novellino, in the Romania, vol. III. pp. 164–194, since republished in Studj di Critica e Storia Letteraria, Bologna, 1880, pp. 219–359.

3. See Introduction, Notes 3, 7.

4. In the Pantschatantra (Benfey's trans. vol. II. p. 120) this story is as follows: A merchant confides to a neighbor some iron scales or balances for safe-keeping. When he wishes them back he is told that the mice have eaten them up. The merchant is silent, and some time after asks his neighbor to lend him his son to aid him in bathing. After the bath the merchant shuts the boy up in a cave, and when the father asks where he is, is told that a falcon has carried him off. The neighbor exclaimed: "Thou liar, how can a falcon carry away a boy? The merchant responded: "Thou veracious man! If a falcon cannot carry away a boy, neither can mice eat iron scales. Therefore give me back my scales if you desire your son." See also Benfey, Pant. I. p. 283. La Fontaine has used the same story for his fable of Le Dépositaire infidèle (livre IX. 1): see also references in Fables inédites, vol. II. p. 193.

5. The fables in Pitrè of non-Oriental origin may be mentioned here; they are: No. 271, "Brancaliuni" found also in Straparola, X. 2; No. 272, "The Two Mice," compare Aesop. ed. Furia, 198, and Schneller, No. 59; No. 274, "Wind, Water, and Honor," found in Straparola, XI. 2; No. 275, "Godfather Wolf and Godmother Fox"; No. 276, "The Lion, the Wolf, and the Fox," Aesop. ed. Furia, 233; No. 277, "The Fox," see Roman du Renart, Paris, 1828, I. p. 129, and Nov. tosc. No. 69; No. 278, "L'Acidduzzu (Pretty Little Bird)," compare Asbj. & Moe, No. 42, Bernoni, Punt. III. p. 69, "El Galo," Nerucci, Cincelle da Bambini, p. 38; No. 279, "The Wolf and the Finch," Gonz., No. 66, Nov. tosc. No. 52 (add to Köhler's references: Asbj. & M., Nos. 42, 102, [Dasent, Tales from the Fjeld, p. 35, "The Greedy Cat,"] and Bernoni, Punt. III. p. 69); and finally No. 280, "The Cricket and the Ants," see Aesop. ed. Furia, 121, La Fontaine, La Cigale et la Fourmi, livre I. 1: see copious references in Robert, Fables inédites, I. p. 2. For Bernoni, III. p. 69, "El Galo," and Pitrè, No. 279, see Chap. V. pp. 270, 272.

There are two fables in Coronedi-Berti's collection: No. 20: "La Fola del Corov," and No. 21, "La Fola dla Vôulp." The first is the well-known fable of the crow in the peacock's feathers; for copious references see Robert, Fables inédites, I. p. 247, to La Fontaine's Le Geai paré des plumes du Paon, livre IV. fab. IX., and Oesterley to Kirchhof's Wendunmuth, 7, 52. In the second fable the fox leaves her little ones at home, bidding them admit no one without a countersign. The wolf learns it from the simple little foxes themselves, gains admission, and eats two of them up. The mother takes her revenge in almost the same way as does the fox in Pitrè's fable, No. 277.

6. This fable is also found in Pitrè, No. 273, "The Man, the Wolf, and the Fox," and in Gonz., No. 69, "Lion, Horse, and Fox:" see Benfey, Pant. I. 113, and Köhler's references to Gonz., No. 69.

There is also a version of this fable in Morosi, p. 75, which is as follows:—


There was once a huntsman, who, in passing a quarry, found a serpent under a large stone. The serpent asked the hunter to liberate him, but the latter said: "I will not free you, for you will eat me." The serpent replied: "Liberate me, for I will not eat you." When the hunter had set the serpent at liberty, the latter wanted to devour him, but the hunter said: "What are you doing? Did you not promise me that you would not eat me?" The serpent replied that hunger did not observe promises. The hunter then said: "If you have no right to eat me, will you do it?" "No," answered the serpent. "Let us go, then," said the hunter, "and ask three times." They went into the woods and found a greyhound, and asked him, and he replied: "I had a master, and I went hunting and caught hares, and when I carried them home my master had nothing too good to give me to eat; now, when I cannot overtake even a tortoise, because I am old, my master wishes to kill me; for this reason I condemn you to be eaten by the serpent; for he who does good finds evil." "Do you hear? We have one judge," said the serpent. They continued their journey, and found a horse, and asked him, and he too replied that the serpent was right to eat the man, "for," he said, "I had a master, who fed me when I could travel; now that I can do so no longer, he would like to hang me." The serpent said: "Behold, two judges!" They went on, and found a fox. The huntsman said: "Fox, you must aid me. Listen: I was passing a quarry, and found this serpent dying under a large stone, and he asked aid from me, and I released him, and now he wants to eat me." The fox answered: "I will be the judge. Let us return to the quarry, to see how the serpent was." They went there, and put the stone on the serpent, and the fox asked: "Is that the way you were?" "Yes," answered the serpent. "Very well, then, stay so always!" said the fox.

7. The individual stories of the Thousand and One Nights were known in Europe long before the collection, which was not translated into French until 1704–1717. This is shown by the fact that some of the XIII. century fabliaux embody stories of the Thousand and One Nights. See Note 10. An interesting article by Mr. H. C. Coote on "Folk-Lore, the source of some of M. Galland's Tales," will be found in the Folk-Lore Record, vol. III. pp. 178–191.

8. The Sicilian versions are in Pitrè, No. 81. The version from Palermo, of which Pitrè gives only a résumé, is printed entire in F. Sabatini, La Lanterna, Nov. pop. sicil. Imola, 1878. The Roman version, "How Cajusse was married," is in Busk, p. 158; and the Mantuan in Visentini, No. 35. Tuscan versions may be found in the Rivista di Lett. pop. p. 267; De Nino, No. 5; and a version from Bergamo in the same periodical, p. 288. For the episode of the "Magician with no heart in his body," see Chap. I. note 12.

9. See Pitrè, No. 36, and Gonz., No. 5, with Köhler's copious references. As this story is found in Chap. I. p. 17, it is only mentioned here for the sake of completeness.

There is another complete version of "The Forty Thieves" in Nerucci, No. 54, Cicerchia, o i ventidua Ladri. The thieves are twenty-two, and cicerchia is the magic word that opens and shuts the robbers' cave. A version in Ortoli, p. 137, has seven thieves.

10. Pitrè, No. 164, "The Three Hunchbacks;" Straparola, V. 3. It is also found in the fabliau, Les Trois Bossus, Barbazan-Méon, III. 245; for copious references see Von der Hagen, Gesammtabenteuer, III. p. xxxv. et seq. Pitrè, No. 165, "Fra Ghiniparu," is a variation of the above theme, and finds its counterpart in the fabliau of Le Sacristain de Cluni: see Gesammtabenteuer, ut sup. Other versions are in Finamore, Trad. pop. abruzzesi, No. 9, and Nov. tosc. No. 58.

11. The story is, properly speaking, in the introduction to the Thousand and One Nights: see Lane, The Thousand and One Nights, London, 1865, I. 10. See Straparola, XII. 3, and Schmipf und Ernst von Johannes Pauli, herausgegeben von Hermann Oesterley (Bibliothek des litt. Vereins, LXXXV.), Stuttgart, 1866, No. 134, "Ein bösz weib tugenhaft zemachen."

12. For the first story, see Thousand and One Nights (ed. Breslau), IX. 129; Pent. V. 7; Gonz., No. 45; Hahn, No. 47; and Grimm, No. 129. For the second, see Thousand and One Nights (ed. Breslau), II. 196; ed. Lane, III. 41.

13. See Lane, I. 140, and, for the transformations, p. 156. This story is also in Straparola, VIII. 5. It is well known in the North of Europe from the Grimm tale (No. 68), "The Thief and his Master," To the references in Grimm, II. p. 431, may be added: Revue Celtique, I. 132, II.; Benfey, Pant. I. p. 410; Brueyre, 253; Ralston, R. F. T. 229; Asbj. & M., No. 57 [Dasent, Pop. Tales, No. XXXIX.] (comp. Nos. 9, 46 [Dasent, Pop. Tales, Nos. XXIII., IX.]); Hahn, No. 68; Bernhauer, Vierzig Viziere, p. 195; Orient und Occident, II. 313; III. 374; Grundtvig, I. 248; Jülg, Kalmükische Märchen, Einleitung, p. 1; and F. J. Child, English and Scottish Popular Ballads, Part II. p. 399, "The Twa Magicians."

14. The principal sources of information in regard to the Disciplina Clericalis and its author are the two editions of Paris and Berlin: Disciplina Clericalis: auctore Petro Alphonsi, Ex-Judæo Hispano, Parisiis, mdcccxxiv. 2 vols. (Société des Bibliophiles français); Petri Alfonsi Disciplina Clericalis, zum ersten Mal herausgegeben mit Einleitung und Anmerkungen von Fr. Wilh. Val. Schmidt, Berlin, 1827. The first edition was edited by J. Labouderie, Vicar-general of Avignon, and as only two hundred and fifty copies were printed, it is now very scarce. Schmidt even had not seen it: and when he published his own edition, three years later, thought it the first. The Paris edition contains the best text, and has besides two Old-French translations, one in prose, the other in verse. The Berlin edition is, however, more valuable on account of the notes.

15. This is the story shortly after mentioned, Pitrè, No. 138, "The Treasure." The date of the Cento nov. ant. cannot be accurately fixed; the compilation was probably made at the end of the XIII. cent., although individual stories may be of an earlier date.

16. See Disciplina Cler. ed. Schmidt, pp. 63 and 142. For copious references see Oesterley's Gesta Rom. cap. 106.

17. There are several literary Italian versions of this story: one in Casalicchio, VI., I., VI.; and in Cintio, Ecatommiti, I. 3. There is another popular version in Imbriani's Nov. fior. p. 616, "The Three Friends."

18. See Disc. Cler. ed. Schmidt, pp. 50 and 128. The version in the Cento nov. ant. ed. Gualt., No. 31, is as follows: Messer Azzolino had a story-teller, whom he made tell stories during the long winter nights. It happened one night that the story-teller had a great mind to sleep, and Azzolino asked him to tell stories. The story-teller began to relate a story about a peasant who had a hundred bezants. He went to market to buy sheep, and had two for a bezant. Returning home with his sheep, a river that he had crossed was greatly swollen by a heavy rain that had fallen. Standing on the bank he saw a poor fisherman with an exceedingly small boat, so small that it would only hold the peasant and one sheep at a time. Then the peasant began to cross with one sheep, and began to row: the river was wide. He rows and crosses. And the story-teller ceased relating. Azzolino said: "Go on." And the story-teller answered: "Let the sheep cross, and then I will tell the story." For the sheep would not be over in a year, so that meanwhile he could sleep at his leisure.

The story passed from the Disc. Cler. into the Spanish collection El Libro de los Enxemplos, No. 85. A similar story is also found in Grimm, No. 86, "The Fox and the Geese."

19. The word translated bank (bancu) is here used to indicate a buried treasure. The most famous of these concealed treasures was that of Ddisisa, a hill containing caves, and whose summit is crowned by the ruins of an Arab castle. This treasure is mentioned also in Pitrè, No. 230, "The Treasure of Ddisisa," where elaborate directions are given for finding it.

20. See Pitrè, vol. IV. p. 401, and Nov. fior. p. 572.

21. See Disc. Cler. ed. Schmidt, pp. 64 and 147, where the story is as follows: "A certain tailor to the king had, among others, an apprentice named Nedui. On one occasion the king's officers brought warm bread and honey, which the tailor and his apprentices ate without waiting for Nedui, who happened to be absent. When one of the officers asked why they did not wait for Nedui, the tailor answered that he did not like honey. When Nedui returned, and learned what had taken place, he determined to be revenged; and when he had a chance he told the officer who superintended the work done for the king that the tailor often went into a frenzy and beat or killed the bystanders. The officer said that if they could tell when the attack was coming on, they would bind him, so that he could not injure any one. Nedui said it was easy to tell; the first symptoms were the tailor's looking here and there, beating the ground with his hands, and getting up and seizing his seat. The next day Nedui securely hid his master's shears, and when the latter began to look for them, and feel about on the floor, and lift up his seat, the officer called in the guard and had the tailor bound, and, for fear he should beat any one, soundly thrashed. At last the poor tailor succeeded in obtaining an explanation; and when he asked Nedui: "When did you know me to be insane?" the latter responded: "When did you know me not to eat honey?" See also references in Kirchhoff's Wendunmuth, I. 243.

22. In the original the admonitions are in the form of a verse, as follows:—

"Primu: Cu' cancia la via vecchia pi la nova,
Le guai ch' 'un circannu ddà li trova.
Secunnu: Vidi assai e parra pocu.
Terzu: Pensa la cosa avanti chi la fai,
Ca la cosa pinsata è bedda assai."

23. See Disc. Cler. ed. Schmidt, pp. 61 and 141. This story is also found in the Gesta Romanorum, cap. 103; Gonz., No. 81, where copious references by Oesterley and Köhler may be found; in Nerucci, No. 53; and in a distorted version in Ortoli, p. 118: see also Giornale Napoletano della Domenica, August 20, 1882; Pitrè, "I Tre Pareri," and Notes and Queries, London, February 7, March 14, 1885.

24. See Note 1 of this chapter.

25. In the original, what the husband, wife, and king, say, is in verse, as follows:—

"Vigna era e Vigna son,
Amata era e più non son;
E non so per qual cagion,
Che la Vigna à perso la so stagion."

"Vigna eri e Vigna sei,
Amata eri e più non se;:
Per la branca del leon
La Vigna à perso la so stagion."

"Ne la Vigna io son intrato,
Di quei pampani n' ò tocato;
Ma lo guiro per la corona che porto in capo,

Che de quel fruto no ghe n' ò gustato."

This story is also found in Pitrè, No. 76, "Lu Bracceri di manu manca" ("The Usher on the Left Hand," i. e., of the king, who also had one on his right hand); Pomiglianesi, No. 6, "Villa;" and, in the shape of a poetical dialogue, in Vigo, Raccolta amplissima di Canti popolari siciliani. Secunda ediz. Catania, 1870–1874, No. 5145.

The story is told of Pier delle Vigne by Jacopo d' Aqui (XIII. cent.) in his Chronicon imaginis mundi, and of the Marchese di Pescara by Brantôme, Vie des Dames galantes. These versions will be found with copious references in Pitrè and Imbriani as cited above: see also, Cantilene e Ballate, Strambotti e Madrigali nei Secoli XIII. e XIV., A cura di Giosuè Carducci, Pisa, 1871, p. 26. The story is discussed in an exhaustive manner by S. Prato in the Romania, vol. XII. p. 535; XIV. p. 132, "L' Orma del Leone."

26. For the Oriental versions see Essai sur les Fables indiennes, par A. Loiseleur Deslongchamps, Paris, 1838, p. 96; Das Buch von den sieben weisen Meistern, aus dem Hebräischen und Griechischen zum ersten Male übersetzt von H. Sengelmann, Halle, 1842, p. 40 (Mischle Sandabâr), p. 87 Syntipas, Tausend und Eine Nacht, Deutsch von Max Habicht, Von der Hagen und Schall, Breslau, 1836, vol. XV. p. 112 (Arabic); Li Romans des Sept Sages, nach der Pariser Handschrift herausgegeben von H. A. Keller, Tubingen, 1836, p. cxxxviii.; Dyocletianus Leben, von Hans von Bühel, herausgegeben von A. Keller, Quedlinburg und Leipzig, 1841, p. 45. All students of this subject are acquainted with Domenico Comparetti's masterly essay Ricerche intorno al Libro di Sindibâd, Milan, 1869, which has recently been made accessible to English readers in a version published by the English Folk-Lore Society in 1882. The Persion and Arabic texts may be consulted in an English translation, reprinted with valuable introduction and notes in the following work: The Book of Sindibād; or, The Story of the King, his Son, the Damsel, and the Seven Vazīrs, From the Persian and Arabic, with Introduction, Notes, and an Appendix, by W. A. Clouston. Privately printed, 1884 [Glasgow], pp. xvii.-lvi.

27. For the original version in the various forms of the Western Seven Wise Masters, see Loiseleur-Deslongchamps, p. 162; Keller, Romans, p. ccxxix., and Dyocletianus, p. 63; and D'Ancona, Il Libro dei Sette Savi di Roma, p. 121. To the references in D'Ancona may be added: Deux Rédactions du Roman des Sept Sages, G. Paris, Paris, 1876, pp. 47, 162; Benfey, in Orient und Occident, III. 420; Romania, VI. p. 182; Mélusine, p. 384; and Basque Legends, collected by Rev. W. Webster, London, 1879, pp. 136, 137.

28. See Grimm, No. 33, "The Three Languages;" Hahn, No. 33; Basque Legends, p. 137; and Mélusine, p. 300. There is a verbose version in the Fiabe Mantovane, No. 23, "Bobo."

29. See Herodotus, with a commentary by J. W. Blakesley, London, 1854, I. p. 254, n. 343. For the literature of this story, and for various other Italian versions, see La Leggenda del Tesoro di Rampsinite, Stanislao Prato, Como, 1882; and Ralston's notes to Schiefner's Tibetan Tales, p. xlvii.

30. For the story in the Seven Wise Masters, see D'Ancona, op. cit. p. 108; Loiseleur-Deslongchamps, p. 146; Keller, Romans, p. cxciii., and Dyoclet. p. 55.

Besides the popular versions in Italian, the story is also found in Bandello, I., XXV., who follows Herodotus closely.

31. For the story in the Seven Wise Masters see D'Ancona, op. cit. p. 120; Loiseleur-Deslongchamps, p. 158; Keller, Romans, p. ccxxxvii., and Dyoclet. p. 61. Literary versions of this story are in Straparola, II. 11; Pecorone, II. 2; Malespini, 53; Bandello, I. 3; and Sercambi, XIII. See Pitrè, IV. pp. 407, 442.

32. The literature of this famous collection of tales will best be found in an article by Wilhelm Pertsch, "Ueber Nachschabî's Papagaienbuch" in the Zeitschrift der deutschen morgenländischen Gesellschaft, Bd. XXI. pp. 505–551. Prof. H. Brockhaus discovered that the eighth night of Nachschabî's version was nothing but a version of the Seven Wise Masters containing seven stories. Nachschabî, in preparing his work, used probably the oldest version of the Seven Wise Masters of which we have any knowledge. Professor Brockhaus made this discovery known in a brief pamphlet entitled: Die Sieben Weisen Meister von Nachschabî, Leipzig, 1843, of which only twelve copies were printed. The above, except the Persian text, was reprinted in the Blätt. für lit. Unterhaltung, 1843, Nos. 242, 243 (pp. 969 et seq.); and, in an Italian translation, in D'Ancona's Il Libro dei Sette Savi di Roma.

The Persian version of Qâdirî (a compend of Nachschabî's) is the one most frequently translated. The German translation: Toutinameh. Eine Sammlung pers. Märchen, von C. J. L. Iken, mit einem Anhange von J. G. L. Kosegarten, Stuttgart, 1822, is easily found. The Turkish version is elegantly translated by G. Rosen: Tuti-nameh, das Papagaienbuch, eine Sammlung orientalischer Erzählungen nach der türkischen Bearbeitung zum ersten Male übersetzt von G. Rosen, Leipzig, 1858, 2 vols.

33. The preservation of the frame of the Çukasaptati in Italian popular tales is only paralleled, to our knowledge, by the preservation of the Seven Wise Masters in a Magyar popular tale. See La Tradizione dei Sette Savi nelle Novelline magiare. Lettera al Prof. A. D'Ancona di E. Teza, Bologna, 1864.

It is possible that the Italian stories containing the frame of the Çukasaptati may have been developed from the story in the Seven Wise Masters which is found in both the Oriental and Occidental versions. The spirit of Folk-tales seems to us averse to expansion, and that condensation is the rule. We think it more likely that it was by way of oral tradition, or from some now lost collection of Oriental tales once known in Italy.

34. It is in the work by Teza mentioned in the last note, p. 52.

35. See Pitrè, vol. I. p. 23. The three stories in one are called Donna Viulanti (Palermo) and Lu Frati e lu Soru (Salaparuta).

36. See Chapter I. note 7.

37. The Italian versions are: Pitrè, No. 78, "Lu Zu Viritati" ("Uncle Truth"); Gonz., No. 8, "Bauer Wahrhaft" ("Farmer Truth"); XII. Conti Pomiglianesi, p. 1, "Giuseppe 'A Veretà" ("Truthful Joseph," the version translated by us); p. 6, another version from same place and with same name; and in Straparola, III. 5. References to Oriental sources may be found in Köhler's notes to Gonz., No. 8, and Oesterley's notes to Gesta Rom. cap. 111.

In addition to the Oriental elements mentioned in the third chapter, Stanislao Prato has discovered the story of Nala in a popular tale from Pitigliano (Tuscany), see S. Prato, La Leggenda indiana di Nala in una novella popolare pitiglianese, Como, 1881. (Extracted from I Nuovi Goliardi.)



1. It is the LXXV. novel of the Testo Gualteruzzi (Biagi, p. 108): Qui conta come Domeneddio s' accompagnò con un giullare. The Lord once went in company with a jester. One day the former went to a funeral, and the latter to a marriage. The Lord called the dead to life again, and was richly rewarded. He gave the jester some of the money with which he bought a kid, roasted it and ate the kidneys himself. His companion asked where they were, and the jester answered that in that country the kids had none. The next time the Lord went to a wedding and the jester to a funeral, but he could not revive the dead, and was considered a deceiver, and condemned to the gallows. The Lord wished to know who ate the kidneys, but the other persisted in his former answer; but in spite of this the Lord raises the dead, and the jester is set at liberty. Then the Lord said he wished to dissolve their partnership, and made three piles of money, one for himself, another for the jester, and the third for the one who ate the kidneys. Then the jester said: "By my faith, now that you speak thus, I will tell you that I ate them; I am so old that I ought not to tell lies now." So some things are proved by money, which a man would not tell to escape from death. For the sources and imitations of this story see D'Ancona, Le Fonti del Novellino, in the Romania, No. 10, p. 180, (Studj, p. 333). To D'Ancona's references may be added the following: Grimm, 147, "The Old Man made young again"; Asbjørnsen and Moe, No. 21 [Dasent, Pop. Tales, No. XIV.], Ny Samm. No. 101 [Dasent, Tales from the Fjeld, p. 94, "Peik"]; Ralston, R. F. T. p. 350; Simrock's Deutsche Märchen, Nos. 31b (p. 148), 32; Romania, No. 24, p. 578, "Le Foie de Mouton" (E. Cosquin, Contes pop. lorrains, No. 30); Brueyre, p. 330; and an Italian version, which is simply an amplification of the one in the Cento nov. ant., in the recently published Sessanta Nov. pop. montalesi, Nerucci, No. 31.

2. See Jahrbuch, VII. pp. 28, 396. The professional pride of the smith finds a parallel in an Irish story in Kennedy, "How St. Eloi was punished for the sin of Pride." Before the saint became religious he was a goldsmith, but sometimes amused himself by shoeing horses, and boasted that he had never found his master in anything. One day a stranger stopped at his forge and asked permission to shoe his horse. Eloi consented, and was very much surprised to see the stranger break off the horse's leg at the shoulder, carry it into the smithy and shoe it. Then the stranger put on again the horse's leg, and asked Eloe if he knew any one who could do such a good piece of work. Eloi tries himself, and fails miserably. The stranger, who is Eloi's guardian angel, cures the horse, reproves the smith for his pride, and disappears. See Brueyre, p. 329, and Bladé, Agenais, p. 61, and Köhler's notes, p. 157.

3. Bernoni, Punt. I. p. 1, "I cinque brazzi de Tela.'' See Benfey, Pant. I. p. 497, where the same story (without the coarseness of the Italian version) is related of Buddha, who tells the hospitable woman that "what she begins shall not end until sunset." She begins to measure linen and it lengthens in her hands so that she continues to measure it all day. The envious neighbor receives the same gift, but before she begins to measure the linen, she thinks she will water the swine; the bucket does not become empty until evening, and the whole neighborhood is inundated. See Benfey's parallels, ut. sup. pp. 497–98, and Grimm, No. 87, notes.

4. These four legends are in Pitrè, Cinque Novelline popolari siciliane, Palermo, 1878. In the third story, "San Pietru e sò cumpari," St. Peter gets something to eat from a stingy man by a play on the word mussu, "snout," and cu lu mussu, "to be angry." For a similar story see Pitrè, III. 312. A parallel to the first of the above legends may be found in Finamore, No. 34, IV., where are also some other legends of St. Peter.

Since the above note was written, some similar legends have been published by Salomone Marino in the Archivio per lo Studio delle Tradizioni popolari, vol. II. p. 553. One "The Just suffers for the Sinner" ("Chianci lu giustu pri lu piccaturi") relates how St. Peter complained to our Lord that the innocent were punished with the guilty. Our Lord made no answer, but shortly after commanded St. Peter to pick up a piece of honey-comb filled with bees, and put it in the bosom of his dress. One of the bees stung him, and St. Peter in his anger killed them all, and when the Lord rebuked him, excused himself by saying: "How could I tell among so many bees which one stung me?" The Lord answered: "Am I wrong then, when I punish men likewise? Chianci lu giustu pri lu piccaturi."

Another legend relates the eagerness of St. Peter's sister to marry. Thrice she sent her brother to our Lord to ask his consent, and thrice the Lord, with characteristic patience, answered: "Tell her to do what she wishes."

A third legend explains why some are rich and some are poor in this world. Adam and Eve had twenty-four children, and one day the Lord passed by the house, and the parents concealed twelve of their children under a tub. The Lord, at the parents' request, blessed the twelve with riches and happiness. After he had departed, the parents realized what they had done, and called the Master back. When he heard that they had told him a falsehood about the number of their children, he replied that the blessing was bestowed and there was no help for it. "Oh!" said Adam in anguish, "what will become of them?" The Lord replied: "Let those who are not blessed serve the others, and let those who are blessed support them." "And this is why in the world half are rich and half are poor, and the latter serve the former, and the former support the latter."

The last of these legends which I shall mention is entitled: "All things are done for money." ("Tutti cosi su' fatti pri dinari.") There once died a poor beggar who had led a pious life, and was destined for paradise. When his soul arrived at the gate and knocked, St. Peter asked who he was and told him to wait. The poor soul waited two months behind the gate, but St. Peter did not open it for him. Meanwhile, a wealthy baron died and went, exceptionally, to paradise. His soul did not need even to knock, for the gate was thrown open, and St. Peter exclaimed: "Throw open the gate, let the baron pass! Come in Sir Baron, your servant, what an honor!" The soul of the beggar squeezed in, and said to himself: "The world is not the only one who worships money; in heaven itself there is this law, that all things are done for money."

5. Pitrè, No. 126, where other Sicilian versions are mentioned. A version from Siena is in T. Gradi, Proverbi e Modi di dire, p. 23, repeated in the same author's Saggio di Letture varie, p. 52, and followed by an article by Tommaseo, originally printed in the Institutore of Turin, in which Servian and Greek parallels are given. Besides the Venetian variant mentioned in the text, there are versions from Umbria and Piedmont cited by Pitrè, a Tuscan one in Nov. tosc. No. 26, and one from the Tyrol in Schneller, No. 4. Pitrè, in his notes to Nov. tosc. No. 26, mentions several other versions from Piedmont, Friuli, and Benevento. An exact version is also found in Corsica: see Ortoli, p. 235.

6. This reminds one of the "Sabbath of the Damned:" see Douhet, Dictionnaire des Légendes, Paris, 1855, p. 1040.

7. Pitrè, in a note to this story, mentions several proverbial sayings in which Pilate's name occurs: "To wash one's hands of the matter like Pilate," and "To come into a thing like Pilate in the Creed," to express engaging in a matter unwillingly, or to indicate something that is mal à propos.

8. Pitrè, I. p. cxxxvii., and Pitrè, Appunti di Botanica popolare siciliana, in the Rivista Europea, May, 1875, p. 441.

9. Pitrè, I. p. cxxxviii.

10. This legend is mentioned in a popular Sicilian legend in verse, see Pitrè, Canti pop. sic. II. p. 368, and is the subject of a chap-book, the title of which is given by Pitrè, Fiabe, vol. IV. p. 397.

11. Preghiere pop. veneziane raccolte da Dom. Giuseppe Bernoni, p. 18.

12. Pitrè, I. p. cxxxiii. For earlier appearances of the Wandering Jew in Italian literature, see A. D'Ancona, La Leggenda dell' Ebreo errante, Nuova Antologia, serie II. vol. XXIII. 1880, p. 425; Romania, vol. X. p. 212, Le Juif errant en Italia au XIIIe siecle, G. Paris and A. D'Ancona; vol. XII. p. 112, Encore le Juif errant en Italie, A. D'Ancona, and Giornale Storico, vol. III. p. 231, R. Renier, where an Italian text of the XVIII. cent, is printed for the first time. The myth of the Wandering Jew can best be studied in the following recent works: G. Paris, Le Juif Errant, Extrait de l'Encyclopedic des Sciences Religieuses, Paris, 1880; Dr. L. Neubaur, Die Sage vom ewigen Juden, Leipzig, 1884; P. Cassel, Ahasverus, die Sage vom ewigen Juden, Berlin, 1885. The name Buttadeu (Buttadæus in the Latin texts of the XVII. cent.) has been explained in various ways. It is probably from the Ital. verb buttare, to thrust away, and dio, God.

13. Crivòliu is a corruption of Gregoriu, Gregory, and the legend is, as Köhler says, a peculiar transformation of the well-known legend of "Gregory on the Stone." For the legend in general, see A. D'Ancona's Introduction to the Leggenda di Vergogna e la Leggenda di Giuda, Bologna, 1869, and F. Lippold, Ueber die Quelle des Gregorius Hartmann's von Aue, Leipzig, 1869, p. 50 et seq. See also Pitrè's notes to No. 117. An example of this class of stories from Cyprus may be found in the Jahrb. XI. p. 357.

14. See Köhler's notes to Gonz., No. 90, and Sacre Rappresentazioni dei Secoli XIV.-XVI. raccolte e illustrate di A. D'Ancona, Florence, 1872, III. p. 435. There is another legend of St. James of Galicia in Busk, p. 208, entitled "The Pilgrims." A husband and wife make the usual vow to St. James that if he will give them children they will make the pilgrimage to Santiago. When the children are fifteen and sixteen the parents start on the pilgrimage, taking with them the son, and leaving the daughter in charge of a priest, who wrote slanderous letters about her, whereupon the son returned suddenly, slew his sister, and threw her body in a ditch. A king's son happened to pass by, found the body, and discovered that it still contained life. He had her cured, and married her, and they afterwards became king and queen. While the king was once at war, the viceroy tempted the queen, and when she would not listen to him, killed her two children and slandered her to the king. The queen took the bodies of the children and wandered about until she met the Madonna, who took the children, and the queen went to Galicia. The king and viceroy also made a pilgrimage to the same place where the queen's parents had dwelt since the supposed death of their daughter. All met at the saint's shrine and forgave each other, and the Madonna restored the children alive and well.

There are two or three other stories in Pitrè and Gonz. in which saints appear in the rôle of good fairies, aiding the hero when in trouble. One of these stories, "The Thankful Dead" (Gonz., No. 74), has already been mentioned in Chapter II. p. 131; two others may be briefly mentioned here. The first is Gonz., No. 74, "Of one who by the help of St. Joseph won the king's daughter." A king proclaims that he will give his daughter to any one who builds a ship that will go by land and water. The youngest of three brothers constructs such a vessel by the help of St. Joseph, after his two brothers have failed. The saint, who is not known to the youth, accompanies him on the voyage on the condition that he shall receive the half of everything that the youth receives. During the voyage they take on board a man who can fill a sack with mist, one who can tear up half a forest and carry the trees on his back, a man who can drink up half a river, one who can always hit what he shoots at, and one who walks with such long steps that when one foot is in Catania the other is in Messina. The king refuses to give his daughter to the youth in spite of the ship that goes by land and water. The youth, however, by the help of his wonderful servants and St. Joseph, fulfils all the king's requirements, and carries away the princess. When the youth returned home with his bride and treasures, St. Joseph called on him to fulfil his promise to him. The youth gives him half of his treasures, and even half of the crown he had won. The saint reminds him that the best of his possessions yet remains undivided,—his bride. The youth determines to keep his promise, draws his sword, and is about to cut his bride in two, when St. Joseph reveals himself, blesses the pair, and disappears.

This story is sometimes found as a version of the "Thankful Dead," see Chapter II. note 12. The second story is Pitrè, No. 116, "St. Michael the Archangel and one of his devotees," of which there is a version in Gonz., No. 76, called, "The Story of Giuseppino." In the first version a child, Pippino, is sold by his parents to the king in order to obtain the means to duly celebrate the feast of St. Michael, to whom they were devoted. The child is brought up in the palace as the princess's playmate; but when he grows up the king is anxious to get rid of him, and so sends him on a voyage in an unseaworthy vessel. St. Michael appears to the lad, and tells him to load the ship with salt. They set sail, and the rotten ship is about to go to pieces, when the saint appears and changes the ship into a vessel all of gold. They sell the cargo to a king who has never tasted salt before, and return to their own country wealthy. The next voyage Pippino, by the saint's advice, takes a cargo of cats, which they sell to the king of a country overrun by mice. Pippino returns and marries the king's daughter. In the version in Gonz., Giuseppino is a king's son, who leaves his home to see the world, and becomes the stable-boy of the king whose daughter he marries. The three cargoes are: salt, cats, and uniforms. On the last voyage, Giuseppino captures a hostile fleet, and makes his prisoners put on the uniforms he has in his ship. With this army he returns, and compels the king to give him his daughter. St. Joseph acts the same part in this version as St. Michael in Pitrè's.

The story of "Whittington and his Cat" will at once occur to the reader. See Pitrè's notes to No. 116, and vol. IV. p. 395, and Köhler to Gonz., No. 76.

15. Köhler has no note on this legend, and I have been unable to find in the list of saints any name of which Onirià or Nerià may be a corruption.

16. The references to this story will best be found in Pauli's Schimpf und Ernst, ed. Oesterley, No. 682, and in the same editor's notes to the Gesta Romanorum, cap. 80. To these may be added a story by De Trueba in his Narraciones populares, p. 65, entitled, "Las Dudas de San Pedro;" Luzel, Légendes Chrétiennes, I. 282, II. 4; Fiore di Virtù, Naples, 1870, p. 68; Etienne de Bourbon, No. 396 (Anecdotes historiques, légendes et apologues tirés du Receuil inédit d'Etienne de Bourbon, pub. pour la Société de l'Hist. de France par A. Lecoy de la Marche, Paris, 1877.

Since the above was written, several important contributions to the literature of this story have been made. The first in point of time and importance is a paper by Gaston Paris in the Comptes Rendus of the Académie des Inscriptions et Belles Lettres, vol. VIII. pp. 427–449 (reprinted in La Poésie du Moyen Age, Leçons et Lectures par Gaston Paris, Paris, 1885). Next may be mentioned "The Literary History of Parnell's Hermit," by W. E. A. Axon, London, 1881 (reprinted from the Seventh Volume of the Third Series of Memoirs of the Manchester Literary and Philosophical Society, Session 1879–80). An Icelandic version is in Islendzk Aeventyri, Isländische Legenden, Novellen und Märchen, herausgegeben von Hugo Gering, Halle, 1884, vol. II. p. 247. The legend is clearly shown by Gaston Paris to be of Jewish origin.

17. There is another version of this story in Gonz., No. 86, "Von dem frommen Kinde" ("The Pious Child"), Köhler in his notes cites Grimm's Children's Legends, No. 9, and Schneller, No. 1. In this last story a pious child is cruelly treated by his step-mother, and leaves his home to live in a convent. One day he notices in a corner a neglected crucifix covered with dust and cobwebs. He sees how thin the figure is, and at meal-time brings his food where the crucifix is and begins to feed the image, which opens its mouth and eats with appetite. As the image grows stouter the pious child grows thinner. The Superior learns one day the fact, and tells the child to ask the Lord to invite him and the Superior to his table. The next day both die suddenly after mass.

In a story in Gonz., No. 47, "Of the pious youth who went to Rome," the youth talks to the image on the crucifix in a familiar way, and receives information about questions put to him by various persons. The youth also dies suddenly at the end of the story.

18. Pitrè, No. 111. Another Sicilian version is in Gonz., No. 88, "The Story of Spadònia." Spadònia is the son of a king, who every day has bread baked and sent to the souls in purgatory by means of an ass sent for that purpose by the Lord. Spadònia becomes king, and sends one of his servants, Peppe, to see where the ass goes. Peppe crosses a river of clear water, one of milk, and one of blood. Then he sees the thin oxen in a rich pasture, and the reverse; in addition he beholds a forest with small and large trees together, and a handsome youth cutting down now a large tree, now a small one, with a single stroke of a bright axe. Then he passed through a door with the ass, and sees St. Joseph, and St. Peter, and all the saints, and among them God the Father. Farther on Peppe sees many saints, and among them the parents of Spadònia. Finally Peppe comes where the Saviour and his Mother are on a throne. The Lord says to him that Spadònia must marry a maiden named Sècula, and open an inn, in which any one may eat and lodge without cost. The Lord then explains what Peppe has seen. The river of water is the good deeds of men which aid and refresh the poor souls in purgatory; the river of milk is that with which Christ was nourished; and the river of blood that shed for sinners. The thin cattle are the usurers, the fat, the poor who trust in God, the youth felling the trees is Death.

Peppe returns and tells his master all he had seen, and Spadònia wanders forth in search of a maiden called Sècula. He finds at last a poor girl so called, and marries her, and opens an inn as he had been directed. After a time the Lord and his Apostles visit the inn, and the king and his wife wait on them, and treat them with the utmost consideration. The next day after they had departed Spadònia and his wife find out who their guests were, and hasten after them in spite of a heavy storm. When they overtake the Lord they ask pardon for their sins, and eternal happiness for all belonging to them. The Lord grants their request, and tells them to be prepared at Christmas, when he will come for them. They return home, give all their property to the poor, and at Christmas they confess, take communion, and die peacefully near each other, together with Sècula's old parents.

This curious legend has no parallels in Italy out of Sicily. It is, however, found in the rest of Europe, the best parallel being L'Homme aux dents rouges, in Bladé, Agenais, p. 52. Köhler cites Bladé, Contes et proverbes pop. rec. en Armagnac, p. 59, and Asbjørnsen, No. 62 [Dasent, Tales from the Fjeld, p. 160, "Friends in Life and Death"]. To these may be added the story in Schneller, p. 215, and the references given by Köhler in his notes to Gonz., No. 88.

19. See Champfleury, De la littérature populaire en France. Recherches sur les origines et les variations de la légende du bonhomme Misère, Paris, 1861. It contains a reprint of the oldest yet known edition of the chap-book, that of 1719. The most valuable references to the legend in general will be found (besides the above work, and Grimm's notes to Nos. 81, 82) in the Jahrb. V. pp. 4, 23; VII. 128, 268; and in Pitrè's notes, vol. III. p. 63, and IV. pp. 398, 439. All the Italian versions are mentioned in the text or following notes. To the stories from the various parts of Europe mentioned in the articles above cited, may be added Webster, Basque Legends, pp. 195, 199. Since this note was written another Tuscan version has been published by Pitrè in his Nov. tosc. No. 28, who cites in his notes: Ortoli, p. 1, § 1, No. XXII. (Corsica); and two literary versions in Cintio de' Fabritii, Venice, 1726, Origine de' volgari proverbi, and Domenico Batacchi in his Novelle galanti: La Vita e la Morte di Prete Ulivo.

20. See Pitrè, No. 125.

21. See Busk, p. 178.

22. See Busk, p. 183.

23. Novelline di Sto. Stefano, No. XXXII. A version from Monferrato is found in Comparetti, No. 34, entitled, "La Morte Burlata" ("Death Mocked"), in which a schoolmaster, who is a magician, tells one of his scholars that he will grant him every day any favor he may ask. The first day the scholar asks that any one who climbs his pear-tree must remain there; the second day he asks that whoever approaches his fireplace to warm himself must stay there; and finally he asks to win always with a pack of cards that he has. When the possessor of these favors has lived a hundred years Death comes for him, but is made to climb the tree, and is forced to grant the owner another hundred years of life. The fireplace procures another respite, and then the man dies and goes to paradise; but the Lord will not admit him, for he had not asked for mercy. Hell will not receive him, for he had been a good man; so he goes to the gate of purgatory and begins playing cards, with souls for stakes, and wins enough to form a regiment. Then he goes to paradise, and the Lord tells him he can enter alone. But he persists in going in with all those who are attached to him; so all the souls enter too.

24. Novelline di Sto. Stefano, No. 33. A similar story, told in greater detail, is in Schneller, No. 17, "Der Stöpselwirth" ("The Tapster"). A generous host ruins himself by his hospitality, and borrows money of the Devil for seven years; if he cannot repay it his soul is to belong to the lender. The host continues his liberality, and at the end of seven years is poorer than before. The Lord, St. Peter, and St. John come to the tavern and tell the landlord to ask three favors. He asks that whoever climbs his fig-tree may remain there; whoever sits on his sofa must stay there; and finally, whoever puts his hands in a certain chest must keep them there. The Devil first sends his eldest son after the money. The host sends him up the fig-tree, and then gives him a sound beating. Then the Devil sends his second son, whom the landlord invites to sit on his sofa, and gives him a sound thrashing too. Finally the Devil himself comes, and the host tells him to get his money himself out of the chest. The Devil sticks fast, and is set free only on condition of renouncing all claims to the landlord's soul.

The conclusion of the story is like that of "Beppo Pipetta."

There is another story about a bargain with the Devil in the Novelline di Sto. Stefano, No. 35, "Le Donne ne sanno un punto piu del diavolo" ("Women know a point more than the Devil"). A fowler sells his soul to the Devil for twelve years of life and plenty of birds. When the time is nearly up the fowler's wife persuades him to alter his bargain with the Devil a little. The latter is to give up his claim if the former can find a bird unknown to the Devil. The Devil consents, and comes the last day and recognizes easily every bird, until finally the fowler's wife, disguised with tar and feathers, comes out of a case and frightens the fowler and the Devil so that he runs away.

The mysterious bird recalls the one in Grimm, No. 46, "Fitcher's Bird."

25. Jahrbuch, VII. 121. The wonderful sack occurs in another Venetian story, Widter-Wolf, No. 14, "Der Höllenpfortner" ("The Porter of Hell"). The gifts are: a gun that never misses, a violin that makes every one dance, and a sack into which every one must spring when commanded by the owner. See Köhler's notes to this story, Jahrb. VII. 268. A Corsican version is in Ortoli, p. 155. The episode of the Devil beaten in the sack is also found in Comparetti, No. 49, "Il Ramaio." A wandering smith gives alms to St. Peter and the Lord, and receives in return a pouch like the above. When the Devil comes to fetch him he wishes him in his sack, and gives him a good pounding. When the smith dies he gets into paradise by throwing his bag inside and wishing himself in it.

There are two other stories in which the Devil gets worsted: they are Gianandrea, No. VI., "Quattordici" ("Fourteen"), and Fiabe Mantovane, No. 11, "Pacchione." In these stories a cunning person is sent to the Devil to bring back a load of gold. The cunning person takes a long pair of tongs, catches the Devil by the nose, loads his horse, and returns in safety.

The first part of the story of "Quattordici" is found in the Basque Legend of "Fourteen:" see Webster, p. 195.

26. Another Venetian version is in Widter-Wolf, No. 3, "Der Gevatter Tod" ("Godfather Death"). There are also two Sicilian versions: Pitrè, No. 109, "La Morti e sò figghiozzu" ("Death and her Godson"); and Gonz., No. 19, "Gevatter Tod," which do not differ materially from the version given in our text. References to European parallels may be found in Köhler's notes to Widter-Wolf, No. 3, Jahrb. VII. p. 19; to Gonz., No. 19, and in Grimm's notes to No. 44.

27. Widter-Wolf, No. 16, "Der standhafter Büsser" ("The Constant Penitent"), Jahrb. VII. p. 273. For parallels, see Köhler's article, Die Legende von dem Ritter in der Capelle, Jahrb. VI. p. 326.

28. Bernoni, Legg. fant. p. 3. The translation in text, as well as that of the two following stories, I have taken from The Cornhill Magazine, July, 1875, "Venetian Popular Legends," p. 86.

Another story illustrating the same point is found in Pitrè, No. 110, Li Cumpari di S. Giuvanni, which is translated as follows by Ralston in Fraser's Magazine, April, 1876, "Sicilian Fairy Tales," p. 424.


Once upon a time there lived a husband and wife, and they were both bound in gossipry with a certain man. The husband got arrested, and was taken away to prison. Now the gossip was very fond of his cummer, and used often to go and visit her. One day she said to him: "Gossip, shall we go and see my husband?" "Gnursi, cummari" ("Certainly, cummer"), said her gossip; so off they went. On the way they bought a large melon—for it was the melon season—to take to the poor prisoner. We are but flesh and blood! The gossip and his cummer sinned against St. John. In short, they brought things to a pretty pass. St. John wasn't going to let that pass unpunished. When they had come to the prison and had visited the prisoner, before going away they wanted to make a present to the jailer; so they gave him the melon. He cut it open before their eyes. Horror of horrors! When the melon was cut open, there was found in the middle of it a head! Now this was the head of St. John, which had slipped itself in there for the purpose of bringing home their sin to the minds of the gossips. The matter immediately came to the ears of justice, and they were arrested. They confessed the wrong they had done. The husband was set at liberty, and the gossip and his cummer were sent to the gallows.

In regard to Saint John and the relationship of godfather, see Pitrè's note in vol. I. p. 73.

29. Bernoni, p. 7; Cornhill Magazine, p. 88.

30. Bernoni, p. 17; Cornhill Magazine, p. 89.

31. Bernoni, p. 19. There are prose versions of the closely related story of Don Juan in Busk, p. 202, "Don Giovanni," and in Nov. tosc. No. 21, "Don Giovanni." There are poetical versions of this legend in G. Ferraro, Canti popolari raccolti a Ponlelagoscuro, No. 19; "La Testa di Morto," in Rivista di Filologia Romanza, vol. II. p. 204; Ive, Canti pop. istriani, Turin, 1877, cap. xxv. No. 6, "Lionzo;" Salomone-Marino, Leggende pop. sicil. XXVII. "Lionziu."

32. Pitrè, No. 128. The version in the text is Ralston's condensation, taken from Fraser's Magazine, p. 433. As Pitrè notes, there is some slight resemblance between this story and that of "Cattarinetta" in Schneller, No. 5, which has a close parallel in Bernoni, Trad. pop. venez. Punt. III. p. 76, "Nono Cocon," and one not so close in Papanti, Nov. pop. livor, No. 1, "La Mencherina," p. 7. There is a close parallel to the Sicilian story in a Tuscan tale, "La Gamba" ("The Leg"), in Novelline pop. toscane, pubb. da G. Pitrè, p. 12. In a note Pitrè mentions a variant from Pratovecchio in which the leg is of gold. He also gives copious references to versions from all parts of Europe. The English reader will recall at once Halliwell's story of "Teeny-Tiny" (Nursery Tales, p. 25). To the above references may be added: "Le Pendu" in Cosquin, Contes pop. lorrains, No. 41, in Romania, No. 28. p. 580. Since the above note was written, another Tuscan version has been published by Pitrè, Nov. tosc. No. 19.

33. Pitrè, No. 203. The parallels to this story may best be found in J. Grimm's Kleinere Schriften, III. p. 414, Der Traum von dem Schatz auf der Brücke. To Grimm's references may be added: Graesse, Sagenschatz Sachsen's, No. 587; Wolf, Hesseche Sagen, No. 47; Kuhn, Westfalische Sagen, No. 169; and Vierzig Veziere, p. 270.



1. The verse in this story is given somewhat differently by Bolza, Canzoni pop. Comasche, Vienna, 1866, Note 9:—

"La storia de Sior Intento,
Che dura molto tempo,
Che mai no se destriga:
Vole che ve la diga?"

The story of Mr. Attentive, which lasts a long time, which is never explained, do you wish me to tell it?

There are in Bernoni, Punt. II. pp. 53, 54, two or three other rhymes of this class that may be given here.


Once upon a time—that I remember—into a blind-man's eye—a fly went—and I thought—that it was a quail—wretched blind-man—go away from here!


Fiaba, aba—Questa xe una—Muro e malta—Questa xe un' altra.

Story, ory—This is one—Wall and mud—This is another.

"A long one and a short one,
Do you wish me to tell you a long one?
This is the finger and this is the nail.
Do you wish me to tell you a short one?
This is the finger and this is the end of it."

2. Pitrè, No. 141. In the notes to this story are given some more of this class.

"Once upon a time there was a page who drew three carts: one of wine, one of bread, and one of relishes. . . . And once upon a time there was a page."

Some poetical versions are given in the same place from various parts of Italy.

"Once upon a time,
An old man and an old woman
Were on top of a mountain . . .
Be quiet, for I am going to tell you it."

— Naples.

"Once upon a time there was a man
Behind the church
With a basket on his back . . .
But be still if I am to tell you it!"

— Milan, Nov. fior. p. 570.

Some more rhymes of this class may be found in Papanti, Nov. pop. livor, p. 17: "Once upon a time there was a man, whose name was Boccabella, who skinned his wife to make a skirt; and skinned his children to make some towels."

"Once upon a time there was a man,
A woman, and a little bottle . . .
Listen to this!"

"Once upon a time there was a king
Who ate more than you;
He ate bread and cheese,
Pull, pull this nose."

Here the speaker pulls the child's nose.

"Once upon a time there was a rich poor man
Who had seven daughters to marry:
On one hand there came a felon,
And on the other seven blisters."

3. Rivista di Letteratura popolare, vol. I. p. 161 (1878). "Una Variante toscana della Novella del Petit Poucet." Versions from the Marches, the Abruzzi, and Tuscany may now be found in Giornale di Filologia romanza, II. p. 23; Finamore, Tradizioni popolari abruzzesi, 1882, No. 47, p. 233; and Nov. tosc. No. 42.

4. The myth of "Tom Thumb" has been thoroughly examined in an admirable monograph: Le Petit Poucet et la Grande Ourse par Gaston Paris, Paris, 1875. The author says in conclusion (p. 52): "Si nous cherchons enfin quels sont les peuples qui nous offrent soit ce conte, soit cette dénomination, nous voyons qu'ils comprennent essentiellement les peuples slaves (lithuanien, esclavon) et germaniques (allemand, danois, suédois, anglais). Les contes des Albanais, des Roumains et des Grecs modernes sont sans doute empruntés aux Slaves, comme une très-grande parti e de la mythologie populaire de ces nations. Le nom wallon et le conte forézien nous montrent en France (ainsi que le titre du conte de Perrault) la légende de Poucet: mais elle a pu fort bien, comme tant d'autres récits semblables, y être apportée par les Germains. Ni en Italie, ni en Espagne, ni dans les pays celtiques je n'ai trouvé trace du conte ou du nom." This latter statement must now, of course, be modified. To the references in Paris' book may be added: Romania, No. 32, p. 59 (Cosquin, No. 53), and Köhler in Zeit. f. rom. Phil. III. p. 617.

The transformation of the chick-peas into children has a parallel in the Greek story of "Pepper-Corn" shortly to be mentioned.

5. The discussion of this point may best be found in the following works: Halliwell's Nursery Rhymes of England (Percy Soc. IV.), London, 1842, pp. 2, 159; Romania, I. p. 218; and Un Canto popolare piemontese e un Canto religioso popolare israelitico. Note e confronti di Cesare Foa, Padova, 1879. The references to the other European versions of this story may be found in Romania, No. 28, p. 546 (Cosquin, No. 34), and Köhler in Zeit. f. rom. Phil. III. 156.

6. Halliwell's Nursery Rhymes, p. 160.

7. There is a poetical version of this story in Vigo, Raccolta amplissima di Canti pop. sicil. 2da ediz. Catania, 1870–1874, No. 4251, beginning:—

"Susi, Bittudda
Va scupa la casa.
— Signura, non pozzu
Mi doli lu cozzu," etc.

The ending, however, is incomplete.

8. Imbriani, Pomiglianesi, p. 232, "Micco."

9. The version from Siena is in Saggio di Letture varie per i Giovani di T. Gradi, Torino, 1865, p. 175, "La Novella di Petuzzo;" the Tuscan (Florence) version is in Imbriani, Nov. fior. p. 548, "Petruzzo." Another Tuscan version may be found in Nerucci, Cincelle da Bambini, No. 7; and one from Apulia in Archivio, III. p. 69.

10. Bernoni, Punt. III. p. 72, "Petin-Petele."

11. The first part of this story is found also in a Tuscan version given by Corazzini in his Componimenti minori, p. 412, "Il Cecio" ("The Chick-pea"). The chick-pea is swallowed by a cock, that is eaten by a pig, that is killed by a calf, that is killed and cooked by an innkeeper's wife for her sick daughter, who recovers, and is given in marriage to the owner of the chick-pea.

The sexton's doubt as to how he shall invest the money he has found is a frequent trait in Italian stories, and is found in several mentioned in this chapter. See notes in Papanti, Nov. pop. livor. p. 29. Copious references to this class of stories may be found in the Romania, Nos. 24, p. 576, and 28, p. 548; Köhler in Zeitschrift für rom. Phil. II. 351; Grimm, No. 80; Orient und Occident, II. 123; Bladé, Agenais, No. 5; Mélusine, 148, 218, 426; and Brueyre, p. 376. See also Halliwell, p. 33, "The Cat and the Mouse."

12. This version is a variant of a story in the same collection, p. 236, which cannot well be translated, as it is mostly in rhyme. There is another version from Montella in the Principato Ulteriore, p. 241, "Lo Haddro e lo Sorece" ("The Cock and the Mouse"), which has a satirical ending. The beginning is like that of the other versions: the cock and the mouse go to gather pears; one falls and wounds the mouse's head. The mouse goes to the physician, who demands rags, the ragman asks for the tail of the dog. The dog demands bread, the baker wood, the mountain an axe; the iron-monger says: "Go to the galantuomo (gentleman, wealthy person), get some money, and I will give you the axe." The mouse goes to the galantuomo, who says: "Sit down and write, and then I will give you the money." So the mouse begins to write for the galantuomo, but his head swells and he dies. A similar story is found in Corsica, see Ortoli, p. 237.

13. It remains to mention two poetical versions: one in Corazzini, from Verona, op. cit. p. 139, which begins:—

"Cos' è questo?
La camera del Vesco.
Cos' è dentro?
Pan e vin," etc.

"What is this? The bishop's chamber. What is in it? Bread and wine. Where is my share? The cat has eaten it. Where is the cat? The stick has beaten him. Where is the stick? The fire has burned it. Where is the fire? The water has quenched it. Where is the water? The ox has drunk it. Where is the ox? Out in the fields. Who is behind there? My friend Matthew. What has he in his hand? A piece of bread. What has he on his feet? A pair of torn shoes. What has he on his back? A whale. What has he in his belly? A balance. What has he on his head? A cap upside down."

The choice of objects is determined by the rhyme, e. g.:

"Cosa g'àlo in schena?
Na balena.
Cosa g'àlo in panza?
Una balanza."

The second poetical version is from Turin, and is given by Foa, op. cit. p. 5. It begins:—

1. "A j'era' na crava
C' a pasturava,
A m' a rout 'l bout
Oh 'l bon vin c'a j'era' nt 'l mè bout
L' è la crava c' a' m l' a rout!

2. "A j'è riva-ie l' luv
L' a mangià la crava
C' a pasturava
C' a m' ha rout 'l bout," etc. (ut supra.)

The following is a literal prose translation of this curious version.

"There was a goat that was feeding, it has broken my bottle. Oh, the good wine that was in my bottle, it is the goat that has broken it! Then came the wolf that ate the goat that was feeding, that broke my bottle, etc. Then came the dog, that barked at the wolf, that ate the goat, etc. Then came the stick that beat the dog, that barked at the wolf, etc. Then came the fire that burned the stick, that beat the dog, etc. Then came the water that quenched the fire, that burned the stick, etc. Then came the ox, that drank the water, that quenched the fire, etc. Then came the butcher that killed the ox, that drank the water, etc. Then came the hangman that hung the butcher, that killed the ox, etc. Then came death, and carried away the hangman, that hung the butcher, etc. Then came the wind, that carried away death, that carried away the hangman," etc.

A variant of this song reminds one more closely of the prose versions.

"Then came the hangman that hung the butcher, etc. Then came the rat that gnawed the cord, that hung the butcher, etc. Then came the cat that ate the rat, that gnawed the cord, etc. Then came the dog that caught the cat, that ate the rat, that gnawed the cord," etc.

The above Italian version, it will be clearly seen, is only a popular rendition of the Jewish hymn in the Sefther Haggadah. Foa, in the work above cited, gives another version from Orio Canarese, and also a number of Italian versions of the "Song of the Kid." His conclu- sion is the same as that of Gaston Paris in the Romania, I. p. 224, that the "Song of the Kid" is not of Jewish origin, but was introduced into the Haggadah from the popular song or story.

14. A version of this story is found in Morosi's Studi sui Dialetti greci, Lecce, 1870.


Once upon a time a goat entered the den of the fox while the latter was absent. At night the fox returned home, and finding the goat fled because frightened by the horns. A wolf passed by, and was also terrified. Then came a hedgehog and entered the den, and pricked the goat with its quills. The goat came out, and the wolf killed it, and the fox ate it.

15. Grimm, No. 30. Another version from the North of Europe is in Asbjørnsen, No. 103 [Dasent, Tales from the Fjeld, p. 30, "The Death of Chanticleer "]. Several French versions may be found in the Romania, No. 22, p. 244, and Mélusine, p. 424. There is a Spanish version in Caballero's Cuentos, etc., Leipzig, 1878, p. 3, "La Hormiguita" ("The Little Ant"). There is a curious version in Hahn's Griechische und Albanesische Märchen, Leipzig, 1864, No. 56, "Pepper-Corn." The story is from Smyrna, and is as follows:—


Once upon a time there was an old man and an old woman who had no children; and one day the old woman went into the fields and picked a basket of beans. When she had finished, she looked into the basket and said: "I wish all the beans were little children." Scarcely had she uttered these words when a whole crowd of little children sprang out of the basket and danced about her. Such a family seemed too large for the old woman, so she said: "I wish you would all become beans again." Immediately the children climbed back into the basket and became beans again, all except one little boy, whom the old woman took home with her.

He was so small that everybody called him little Pepper-Corn, and so good and charming that everybody loved him.

One day the old woman was cooking her soup and little Pepper-Corn climbed up on the kettle and looked in to see what was cooking, but he slipped and fell into the boiling broth and was scalded to death. The old woman did not notice until meal-time that he was missing, and looked in vain for him everywhere to call him to dinner.

At last they sat down to the table without little Pepper-Corn, and when they poured the soup out of the kettle into the dish the body of little Pepper-Corn floated on top.

Then the old man and the old woman began to mourn and cry: "Dear Pepper-Corn is dead, dear Pepper-Corn is dead."

When the dove heard it she tore out her feathers, and cried: "Dear Pepper-Corn is dead. The old man and the old woman are mourning."

When the apple-tree saw that the dove tore out her feathers it asked her why she did so, and when it learned the reason it shook off all its apples.

In like manner, the well near by poured out all its water, the queen's maid broke her pitcher, the queen broke her arm, and the king threw his crown on the ground so that it broke into a thousand pieces; and when his people asked him what the matter was, he answered: "Dear Pepper-Corn is dead, the old man and the old woman mourn, the dove has torn out her feathers, the apple-tree has shaken off all its apples, the well has poured out all its water, the maid has broken her pitcher, the queen has broken her arm, and I, the king, have lost my crown; dear Pepper-Corn is dead."

See also Benfey, Pant. I. p. 191. There is also a version in Morosi, op. cit., given by Imbriani in Pomiglianesi, p. 268; and mention is made of one from the Abruzzi in Finamore, Trad. pop. abruzzesi, p. 244.

16. In addition to the versions mentioned in the text, Imbriani (Pomiglianesi, pp. 250, 252) gives two versions from Lecco.

The following version is found in Morosi, p. 73.


There was once an ant who, while sweeping her house one day, found three quattrini, and began to say: "What shall I buy? What shall I buy? Shall I buy meat? No, because meat has bones, and I should choke. Shall I buy fish? No, for fish has bones, and I should be scratched." After she had mentioned many other things, she concluded to buy a red ribbon. She put it on, and sat in the window. An ox passed by and said: "How pretty you are! do you want me for your husband?" She said: "Sing, so that I may hear your voice." The ox with great pride raised his voice. After the ant had heard it, she said: "No, no, you frighten me."

A dog passed by, and the same happened to him as to the ox. After many animals had passed, a little mouse went by and said: "How pretty you are! do you want me for your husband?" She said: "Let me hear you sing." The mouse sang, and went pi, pi, pi! His voice pleased the ant, and she took him for her husband.

Sunday came, and while the ant was with her friends, the mouse said: "My dear little ant, I am going to see whether the meat that you have put on the fire is done." He went, and when he smelled the odor of the meat, he wanted to take a little; he put in one paw and burned it; he put in the other, and burned that too; he stuck in his nose, and the smoke drew him into the pot, and the poor little mouse was all burned. The ant waited for him to eat. She waited two, she waited three hours, the mouse did not come. When she could wait no longer, she put the dinner on the table. But when she took out the meat, out came the mouse dead. When she saw him the ant began to weep, and all her friends; and the ant remained a widow, because he who is a mouse must be a glutton. If you don't believe it, go to her house and you will see her.

17. Other Italian versions are: Pitrè, No. 136, "Li Vecchi" ("The Old Folks"); and Nov. fior. p. 567, "The Story of Signor Donato."

18. There are two versions of this story in Pitrè, No. 139, and notes. They differ but little from the one we have translated. An Istrian version is in Ive, Fiabe pop. rovignesi, 1878, No. 4, "I tri fardai," and a Corsican one in Ortoli, p. 278.

19. Other Italian versions are: Coronedi-Berti, p. 49, "La Fola d' Zanninein;" and Bernoni, Trad. pop. p. 79, "Rosseto."

20. There is another Italian version in Fiabe Mantovane, No. 31, "The Wolf." The only parallel I can find to this story out of Italy is a negro story in Lippincott's Magazine, December, 1877, "Folk-Lore of the Southern Negroes," p. 753, "Tiny Pig." Allusion is made to the Anglo-Saxon story of the "Three Blue Pigs," but I have been unable to find it.

21. A Sicilian version is in Pitrè, No. 278, "L' Acidduzzu" ("Little Bird"), and one from Tuscany in Nerucci, Cincelle da Bambini, No. 12.

22. Köhler, in his notes to this story, gives parallels from various parts of Europe. To these may be added Asbjørnsen and Moe, Nos. 42, 102 [Dasent, Tales from the Fjeld, p. 35, "The Greedy Cat"]. Comp. Halliwell, p. 29, "The story of Chicken-licken." A French version is in the Romania, No. 32, p. 554 (Cosquin, No. 45), where copious references to this class of stories may be found. Add to these those by Köhler in Zeitschrift für rom. Phil. III. p. 617.



1. A well-known literary version of this story is Sachetti, Nov. IV. Copious references to this popular story will be found in Oesterley's notes to Pauli's Schimpf und Ernst, No. 55; see also Pitrè, IV. pp. 392, 437. The entire literature of the subject is summed up in a masterly manner by Professor F. J. Child in English and Scottish Popular Ballads, Part II. p. 403.

2. There is a version from Siena in Gradi, Saggio di Letture varie, p. 179, "Teà, Tècla e Teopista;" and from Rome in Busk, pp. 357, 367. References to other European versions of this story may be found in Grimm, Nos. 34, 104; Schneller, No. 56, "Die närrischen Weiber;" Zingerle, Märchen, I. No. 14; Dasent's Tales from the Norse, p. 191, "Not a Pin to choose between Them" (Asbj. & M., No. 10); Ralston, R. F. T. pp. 52–54; Jahrbuch, V. 3, Köhler to Cénac Moncaut's Contes pop. de la Gascogne, p. 32, "Maître Jean l'habile Homme; "Orient und Occident, II. p. 319; Köhler to Campbell, No. 20, "The Three Wise Men," p. 686, to No. 48, "Sgire Mo Chealag."

3. This story is sometimes found as one of the episodes of the last tale, as for example in Schneller, No. 56. Imbriani, Pomiglianesi, p. 227, cites as parallels: Coronedi-Berti, XII. "La fola dla Patalocca;" Beroaldo di Verville, Le Moyen de Parvenir, LXXVIII.; and a story in La Civiltà italiana, 1865, No. 13. See also Romania, VI. p. 551 (E. Cosquin, Contes pop. lorrains, No. 22), and Jahrb. VIII. 267, Köhler to the above cited story in the Civiltà ital. from Calabria. It is also the story of "The Miser and his Wife" in Halliwell, p. 31.

4. There is a literary version in Straparola, VIII. 1. Other literary versions are cited in Pitrè, IV. p. 443.

5. Pitrè, No. 257, where references to other Italian versions may be found. See also Pitrè, IV. pp.412 and 447; and Köhler's notes to Bladé, Contes pop. recueillis en Agenais, p. 155, for other European versions. Additional references may be found in Oesterley's notes to Pauli's Schimpf und Ernst, No. 595. A similar story is in Pitrè's Nov. tosc. No. 67.

6. Pitrè, No. 180. A literary version is in Straparola, VIII. 6. For other references see Schmidt, Straparola, p. 329; and Oesterley's notes to Pauli's Schimpf und Ernst, No. 357.

7. This story is found in Gonz., No. 75, "Von Firrazzanu," and is (with the queen's attempt to punish him for it) the only joke in that collection relating to Firrazzanu. A literary version is in Bandello, Novelle, IV. 27.

8. See Pitrè, No. 156, var. 5 (III. p. 181).

9. Imbriani in his notes to Pitrè (IV. p. 417) gives a French version of this joke entitled: Un Neveu pratique.

10. The name Giufà is retained in many localities with slight phonetic changes. Thus it is Giucà in Trapani; Giuχà in the Albanian colonies in Sicily; in Acri, Giuvali; and in Tuscany, Rome, and the Marches, Giucca. Pitrè, III. p. 371, adds that the name Giufà is the same as that of an Arab tribe. The best known continental counterparts of Giufà are Bertoldino and Cacasenno (see Olindo Guerrini, La Vita e le Opere di Giulio Cesare Croce, Bologna, 1879, PP- 257–279). Tuscan versions of the stories of Giufà given in the text may be found in Nov. tosc. pp. 179–193.

11. The same story is told by Miss Busk, "The Booby," p. 371, and is in the Pent. I. 4. It is probably founded on the well-known fable of Æsop, "Homo fractor simulacri" (ed. Furia, No. 21), which seems very widely spread. A Russian version, from Afanasieff, is in De Gub., Zoöl. Myth. I. p. 176. See also Benfey, Pant. I. p. 478; and Köhler to Gonz., No. 37.

12. In Gonz., No. 37, Giufà takes the cloth, and on his way to the dyer's sits down to rest on a heap of stones in a field. A lizard creeps out from the stones, and Giufà, taking it for the dyer, leaves the cloth on the stones and returns home. His mother, of course, sends him immediately back for the cloth, but it has disappeared, as well as the lizard. Giufà cries: "Dyer, if you don't give me back my cloth I will tear down your house." Then he begins to pull down the heap of stones, and finds a pot of money which had been hidden there. He takes it home to his mother, who gives him his supper and sends him to bed, and then buries the money under the stairs. Then she fills her apron with figs and raisins, climbs upon the roof, and throws figs and raisins down the chimney into Giufà's mouth as he lies in his bed. Giufà is well pleased with this, and eats his fill. The next morning he tells his mother that the Christ child has thrown him figs and raisins from heaven the night before. Giufà cannot keep the pot of money a secret, but tells every one about it, and finally is accused before the judge. The officers of justice go to Giufà's mother and say: "Your son has everywhere told that you have kept a pot of money which he found. Do you not know that money that is found must be delivered up to the court?" The mother protests that she knows nothing about the money, and that Giufà is always telling stupid stories. "But mother," said Giufà, "don't you remember when I brought you home the pot, and in the night the Christ child rained figs and raisins from heaven into my mouth?" "There, you see how stupid he is," says the mother, "and that he does not know what he says." The officers of justice go away thinking, "Giufà is too stupid!"

Köhler, in his Notes to Gonz., No. 37, cites as parallels to the above, Pent. I. 4, and Thousand and One Nights, Breslau trans. XI. 144. For the rain of figs and raisins he refers to Jahrb. VIII. 266 and 268; and to Campbell, II. 385, for a shower of milk porridge. See Note 16 of this chapter, and Indian Fairy Tales, p. 257.

13. See Max Mühler's Chips, II. p. 229, and Benfey, Pant. I. p. 293.

14. See Imbriani, Nov. fior. p. 545; Papanti, Nov. pop. livor. No. 3; and Bernoni, Punt. III. p. 83.

15. See Robert, Fables inédites, II. p. 136. The Italian literary versions are: Morlini, XXI., Straparola, XIII. 4; and two stories mentioned by Imbriani in his Nov. fior. pp. 545, 546.

16. This episode is in Strap. XIII. 4; Pitrè, IV. p. 291, gives a version from the Albanian colony of Piana de' Greci, sixteen miles from Palermo. In the same vol., p. 444, he gives a variant from Erice in which, after Giufà has killed the "canta-la-notti," his mother climbs a fig-tree and rains down figs into the mouth of Giufà, who is standing under. In this way she saves herself from the accusation of having thrown a murdered man into the well. See Note 12. For another Sicilian version of this episode see Gonz., No. 37 (I. p. 252).

17. Papanti, p. 65. Copious references will be found in Papanti, pp. 72–81; Oesterley to Pauli, Schimpf und Ernst, No. 416; and Kirchof, Wendunmuth, I. 122; and Köhler's notes to Sercambi's Novels in Jahrb. XII. p. 351.

18. Köhler, in his notes to Gonz., No. 37 (II. p. 228), cites for this story: Thousand and One Days, V. 119; Pent. I. 4; Grimm, II. 382; Morlini, No. 49; Zingerle, I. 255; Bebelius, Facetiæ, I. 21; Bladé, Contes et Proverbes, Paris, 1867, p. 21; and Bertoldino (Florence, Salani), p. 31, "Bertoldino entra nella cesta dell' oca a covare in cambio di lei." In the story in the Fiabe Mant. No. 44, "Il Pazzo" ("The Fool"), the booby kills his own mother by feeding her too much macaroni when she is ill.

19. See Pitrè, No. 190, var. 9; Jahrb. V. 18; Simrock, Deutsche Märchen, No. 18 (Orient und Occident, III. p. 373); Hahn, No. 34; Jahrb. VIII. 267; Mélusine, p. 89; Nov. fior. p. 601; Romania, VI. p. 551; Busk, pp. 369, 374; and Fiabe Mant. No. 44.

In the Sicilian stories Giufà simply takes the door off its hinges and carries it to his mother, who is in church. In the other Italian versions the booby takes the door with him, and at night carries it up into a tree. Robbers come and make a division of their booty under the tree, and the booby lets the door fall, frightens them away, and takes their money himself.

20. See Köhler's notes to Gonz., II. p. 228. To these may be added, for the story of Giufà planting the ears and tails of the swine in the marsh: Ortoli, p. 208: Mélusine, p. 474; and Romania, VII. p. 556, where copious references to parallels from all of Europe may be found. In the story in Ortoli, cited above, the priest's mother is killed, as in text.

21. For the literal throwing of eyes, see: Jahrb. V. p. 19; Grimm, No. 32 (I. p. 382); Nov. fior. p. 595; Webster, Basque Legends, p. 69; Orient und Occident, II. 684 (Köhler to Campbell, No. 45).

22. See Gonz., Nos. 70, 71, and Köhler's notes, II. p. 247. Other Italian versions are: De Gub., Sto. Stefano, No. 30; Widter-Wolf, No. 18, and Köhler's notes (Jahrb. VII. 282); Strap., I. 3: Nov. fior. p. 604; Fiabe Mant. No. 13. To these may be added: Romania, V. p. 357; VI. p. 539; and VIII. p. 570.

23. See Pitrè's notes, IV. pp. 124, 412; and F. Liebrecht in the Academy, vol. IV. p. 421.

24. See Pitrè's notes, IV. pp. 140, 448; Wright's Latin Stories, pp. 49, 226.

25. Pitrè, No. 290. See Papanti, op. cit. p. 197, where other versions are cited. To these may be added the story in Marcolf, see Guerrini, Vita di G. C. Croce, p. 215; and Marcolphus, Hoc est Disputationis, etc., in Epistolæ obscuror, virorum, Frankf. a. M., 1643, p. 593.

There is another story in Pitrè (No. 200) which is also attributed to Dante. It is called:—


Once upon a time Peter Fullone, the stone-cutter, was working at the cemetery, near the church of Santo Spirito; a man passed by and said: "Peter, what is the best mouthful?" Fullone answered: "An egg;" and stopped.

A year later Fullone was working in the same place, sitting on the ground and breaking stones. The man who had questioned him the year before passed by again and said: "Peter, with what?" meaning: what is good to eat with an egg. "With salt," answered Peter Fullone. He had such a wise head that after a year he remembered a thing that a passer-by had said.

The cemetery alluded to, Pitrè says, is beyond the gate of St. Agatha, near the ancient church of Sto. Spirito, where the Sicilian Vespers began. An interesting article on Peter Fullone may be found in Pitrè, Studi di Poesia popolare, p. 109, "Pietro Fullone e le Sfide popolari siciliane."

The sight-seer in Florence has noticed, on the east side of the square in which the cathedral stands, a block of stone built into the wall of a house, and bearing the inscription, "Sasso di Dante." 1 The guide-books inform the traveller that this is the stone on which the great poet was wont to sit on summer evenings. Tradition says that an unknown person once accosted Dante seated in his favorite place, and asked: "What is the best mouthful?" Dante answered: "An egg." A year after, the same man, whom Dante had not seen meanwhile, approached and asked: "With what?" Dante immediately replied: "With salt."

A poet, Carlo Gabrielli, put this incident into rhyme, and drew from it the following moral (senso):—

"L' acuto ingegno grande apporta gloria;
Maggior, se v'è congiunta alta memoria."

See Papanti, op. cit. pp. 183, 205.

26. This story is told in almost the same words in Pitrè, No. 297, "The Peasant and the King." There are several Italian literary versions, the best known being in the Cento nov. ant. ed. Borghini, Nov. VI.: see D'Ancona's notes to this novel in the Romania, III. p. 185, "Le Fonti del Novellino." It is also found in the Gesta Romanorum, cap. 57, see notes in Oesterley's edition; and in Simrock's Deutsche Märchen, No. 8, see Liebrecht's notes in Orient und Occident, III. p. 372. To the above may, finally, be added Köhler's notes to Gonz., No. 50 (II. p. 234).

27. Comparetti, No. 43, "La Ragazza astuta" (Barga). The first part of the story, dividing the fowl, and sending the presents, which are partly eaten on the way, is found in Gonz., No. 1, "Die Kluge Bauerntochter" ("The Peasant's Clever Daughter"). See Köhler's notes to Gonz., No. 1 (II. 205); and to Nasr-eddin's Schwänke in Orient und Occident, I. p. 444. Grimm, No. 94, "The Peasant's Wise Daughter," contains all the episodes of the Italian story except the division of the fowl. An Italian version in the Fiabe Mant. No. 36, "La giovane accorta" contains the episode of the mortar. The king sends word to the clever daughter that she must procure for him some ahimè (sneeze) salad. She sent him some ordinary salad with some garlic sprinkled over it, and when he touched it he sneezed (and formed the sound represented by the word ahimè). The rest of the story contains the episode lacking in the other popular Italian versions, but found in Grimm, and technically known as "halb geritten." For this episode see Gesta Romanorum, ed. Oesterley, cap. 124, and Pauli, 423.

Another Italian version from Bergamo may be found in Corazzini, p. 482, "La Storia del Pestu d' or" ("The Story of the Gold Pestle"), which is like the version in the text from the episode of the mortar on. In the story from Bergamo it is a gold pestle, and not a mortar, that is found, and the story of "halb geritten" is retained. The episode of the foal is changed into a sharp answer made (at the queen's suggestion) by the king's herdsman to his master, who had failed to pay him for his services. A version from Montale, Nerucci, p. 18, "Il Mortajo d' oro" ("The Golden Mortar"), contains all the episodes of the story in the text (including "halb geritten") except the division of the fowl. The first part of the story is found in a tale from Cyprus, in the Jahrb. XI. p. 360.

A parallel to the story in our text may also be found in Ralston's R. F. T. p. 30. The literature of the story of "The Clever Girl" may be found in Child's English and Scottish Popular Ballads, Part I. p. 6, "The Elfin Knight."

28. Fiabe Mantovane, No. 41, "Gàmbara." The Italian for crab is gambero. There is a Tuscan story (Nov. pop. tosc. p. 8), "Il Medico grillo" ("Doctor Cricket"), with reference perhaps to the other meaning of grillo, whim, fancy, which reminds one of the story in the text. The pretended doctor cures a king's daughter by making her laugh so hard that she dislodges a fish-bone that had stuck in her throat. Doctor Cricket becomes so popular that the other doctors starve, and finally ask the king to kill him. The king refuses, but sets him a difficult task to do, namely, to cure all the patients in the hospital; failing to accomplish this, he is to be killed or dismissed. Doctor Cricket has a huge cauldron of water heated, and then goes into the wards and tells the patients that when the water is hot they are all to be put into it, but if any one wishes to depart he can go away then. Of course they all run away in haste, and when the king comes the hospital is empty. The doctor is then richly rewarded, and returns to his home.

For parallels to our story see Pitrè's notes, vol. IV. p. 442, and to the Tuscan story above-mentioned.

Another Tuscan version has recently been published in Nov. tosc. No. 60. See also Grimm, No. 98; Asbjørnsen, Ny Sam. No. 82 [Dasent, Tales from the Fjeld, p. 139, "The Charcoal Burner"]; Caballero, Cuentos, p. 68; Orient und Occident, I. 374; and Benfey, Pant. I. 374. There is a story in Straparola (XIII. 6) that recalls the story in our text. A mother sends her stupid son to find "good day" (il buon dì). The youth stretched himself in the road near the city gate where he could observe all those who entered or left the town. Now it happened that three citizens had gone out into the fields to take possession of a treasure that they had discovered. On their return they greeted the youth in the road with "good day." The youth said, when the first one saluted him: "I have one of them," meaning one of the good days, and so on with the other two. The citizens who had found the treasure, believing that they were discovered, and that the youth would inform the magistrates of the find, shared the treasure with him.