Home
  By Author [ A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z |  Other Symbols ]
  By Title [ A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z |  Other Symbols ]
  By Language
all Classics books content using ISYS

Download this book: [ ASCII ]

Look for this book on Amazon


We have new books nearly every day.
If you would like a news letter once a week or once a month
fill out this form and we will give you a summary of the books for that week or month by email.

´╗┐Title: Jakata tales
Author: Babbitt, Ellen C.
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Jakata tales" ***

This book is indexed by ISYS Web Indexing system to allow the reader find any word or number within the document.



  Transcriber's Notes:

  Italic text is denoted by _underscores_ and bold text by
  =equal signs=.

  Small uppercase have been replaced with regular uppercase.

  Blank pages have been eliminated.

  Variations in spelling and hyphenation have been left as in the
  original.



                             Jataka Tales


                              Re-told by
                           Ellen C. Babbitt


                         With illustrations by
                            Ellsworth Young


                            [Illustration]


                               New York
                            The Century Co.
                                 1912



                          COPYRIGHT, 1912, BY
                            THE CENTURY CO.

                     _Published, September, 1912_



                               Dedicated
                                  to
                                  DOT



FOREWORD


Long ago I was captivated by the charm of the Jataka Tales and realized
the excellent use that might be made of them in the teaching of
children. The obvious lessons are many of them suitable for little
people, and beneath the obvious there are depths and depths of meaning
which they may learn to fathom later on. The Oriental setting lends an
additional fascination. I am glad that Miss Babbitt has undertaken to
put together this collection, and commend it freely to teachers and
parents.

                                                  FELIX ADLER.



CONTENTS

        PAGE

      I THE MONKEY AND THE CROCODILE                   3

     II HOW THE TURTLE SAVED HIS OWN LIFE             10

    III THE MERCHANT OF SERI                          13

     IV THE TURTLE WHO COULDN'T STOP TALKING          18

      V THE OX WHO WON THE FORFEIT                    21

     VI THE SANDY ROAD                                25

    VII THE QUARREL OF THE QUAILS                     30

   VIII THE MEASURE OF RICE                           34

     IX THE FOOLISH, TIMID RABBIT                     39

      X THE WISE AND THE FOOLISH MERCHANT             44

     XI THE ELEPHANT GIRLY-FACE                       52

    XII THE BANYAN DEER                               58

   XIII THE PRINCES AND THE WATER-SPRITE              63

    XIV THE KING'S WHITE ELEPHANT                     69

     XV THE OX WHO ENVIED THE PIG                     74

    XVI GRANNIE'S BLACKIE                             77

   XVII THE CRAB AND THE CRANE                        84

  XVIII WHY THE OWL IS NOT KING OF THE BIRDS          90



PUBLISHER'S NOTE


The Jatakas, or Birth-stories, form one of the sacred books of the
Buddhists and relate to the adventures of the Buddha in his former
existences, the best character in any story being identified with the
Master.

These legends were continually introduced into the religious discourses
of the Buddhist teachers to illustrate the doctrines of their faith or
to magnify the glory and sanctity of the Buddha, somewhat as medieval
preachers in Europe used to enliven their sermons by introducing fables
and popular tales to rouse the flagging interest of their hearers.

Sculptured scenes from the Jatakas, found upon the carved railings
around the relic shrines of Sanchi and Amaravati and of Bharhut,
indicate that the "Birth-stories" were widely known in the third
century B.C., and were then considered as part of the sacred history of
the religion. At first the tales were probably handed down orally, and
it is uncertain when they were put together in systematic form.

While some of the stories are Buddhistic and depend for their point
on some custom or idea peculiar to Buddhism, many are age-old fables,
the flotsam and jetsam of folk-lore, which have appeared under various
guises throughout the centuries, as when they were used by Boccaccio or
Poggio, merely as merry tales, or by Chaucer, who unwittingly puts a
Jataka story into the mouth of his pardoners when he tells the tale of
"the Ryotoures three."

Quaint humor and gentle earnestness distinguish these legends and
they teach many wholesome lessons, among them the duty of kindness to
animals.

Dr. Felix Adler in his "Moral Instruction of Children," says:

  The Jataka Tales contain deep truths, and are calculated to
  impress lessons of great moral beauty. The tale of the Merchant of
  Seri, who gave up all that he had in exchange for a golden dish,
  embodies much the same idea as the parable of the priceless Pearl,
  in the New Testament. The tale of the Measure of Rice illustrates
  the importance of a true estimate of values. The tale of the
  Banyan Deer, which offered its life to save a doe and her young,
  illustrates self-sacrifice of the noblest sort. The tale of the
  Sandy Road is one of the finest in the collection.

And he adds that these tales "are, as everyone must admit, nobly
conceived, lofty in meaning, and many a helpful sermon might be
preached from them as texts."

[Illustration]



Jataka Tales



I

THE MONKEY AND THE CROCODILE


PART I

A monkey lived in a great tree on a river bank.

In the river there were many Crocodiles.

A Crocodile watched the Monkeys for a long time, and one day she said
to her son: "My son, get one of those Monkeys for me. I want the heart
of a Monkey to eat."

"How am I to catch a Monkey?" asked the little Crocodile. "I do not
travel on land, and the Monkey does not go into the water."

"Put your wits to work, and you'll find a way," said the mother.

And the little Crocodile thought and thought.

At last he said to himself: "I know what I'll do. I'll get that Monkey
that lives in a big tree on the river bank. He wishes to go across the
river to the island where the fruit is so ripe."

So the Crocodile swam to the tree where the Monkey lived. But he was a
stupid Crocodile.

"Oh, Monkey," he called, "come with me over to the island where the
fruit is so ripe."

"How can I go with you?" asked the Monkey. "I do not swim."

"No--but I do. I will take you over on my back," said the Crocodile.

The Monkey was greedy, and wanted the ripe fruit, so he jumped down on
the Crocodile's back.

"Off we go!" said the Crocodile.

"This is a fine ride you are giving me!" said the Monkey.

"Do you think so? Well, how do you like this?" asked the Crocodile,
diving.

"Oh, don't!" cried the Monkey, as he went under the water. He was
afraid to let go, and he did not know what to do under the water.

When the Crocodile came up, the Monkey sputtered and choked. "Why did
you take me under water, Crocodile?" he asked.

"I am going to kill you by keeping you under water," answered the
Crocodile. "My mother wants Monkey-heart to eat, and I'm going to take
yours to her."

[Illustration: "Why did you take me under water, Crocodile?" he asked.]

"I wish you had told me you wanted my heart," said the Monkey, "then I
might have brought it with me."

"How queer!" said the stupid Crocodile. "Do you mean to say that you
left your heart back there in the tree?"

"That is what I mean," said the Monkey. "If you want my heart, we must
go back to the tree and get it. But we are so near the island where the
ripe fruit is, please take me there first."

"No, Monkey," said the Crocodile, "I'll take you straight back to your
tree. Never mind the ripe fruit. Get your heart and bring it to me at
once. Then we'll see about going to the island."

"Very well," said the Monkey.

But no sooner had he jumped onto the bank of the river than--whisk! up
he ran into the tree.

From the topmost branches he called down to the Crocodile in the water
below:

"My heart is way up here! If you want it, come for it, come for it!"


PART II

The monkey soon moved away from that tree.

He wanted to get away from the Crocodile, so that he might live in
peace.

But the Crocodile found him, far down the river, living in another tree.

In the middle of the river was an island covered with fruit-trees.

Half-way between the bank of the river and the island, a large rock
rose out of the water. The Monkey could jump to the rock, and then to
the island. The Crocodile watched the Monkey crossing from the bank of
the river to the rock, and then to the island.

He thought to himself, "The Monkey will stay on the island all day, and
I'll catch him on his way home at night."

The Monkey had a fine feast, while the Crocodile swam about, watching
him all day.

Toward night the Crocodile crawled out of the water and lay on the
rock, perfectly still.

When it grew dark among the trees, the Monkey started for home. He ran
down to the river bank, and there he stopped.

"What is the matter with the rock?" the Monkey thought to himself. "I
never saw it so high before. The Crocodile is lying on it!"

But he went to the edge of the water and called: "Hello, Rock!"

No answer.

Then he called again: "Hello, Rock!"

Three times the Monkey called, and then he said: "Why is it, Friend
Rock, that you do not answer me to-night?"

"Oh," said the stupid Crocodile to himself, "the rock answers the
Monkey at night. I'll have to answer for the rock this time."

So he answered: "Yes, Monkey! What is it?"

The Monkey laughed, and said: "Oh, it's you, Crocodile, is it?"

"Yes," said the Crocodile. "I am waiting here for you. I am going to
eat you."

"You have caught me in a trap this time," said the Monkey. "There is no
other way for me to go home. Open your mouth wide so I can jump right
into it."

[Illustration: The Monkey jumped.]

Now the Monkey well knew that when Crocodiles open their mouths wide,
they shut their eyes.

While the Crocodile lay on the rock with his mouth wide open and his
eyes shut, the Monkey jumped.

But not into his mouth! Oh, no! He landed on the top of the Crocodile's
head, and then sprang quickly to the bank. Up he whisked into his tree.

When the Crocodile saw the trick the Monkey had played on him, he said:
"Monkey, you have great cunning. You know no fear. I'll let you alone
after this."

"Thank you, Crocodile, but I shall be on the watch for you just the
same," said the Monkey.



II

HOW THE TURTLE SAVED HIS OWN LIFE


A king once had a lake made in the courtyard for the young princes to
play in. They swam about in it, and sailed their boats and rafts on it.
One day the king told them he had asked the men to put some fishes into
the lake.

Off the boys ran to see the fishes. Now, along with the fishes, there
was a Turtle. The boys were delighted with the fishes, but they had
never seen a Turtle, and they were afraid of it, thinking it was a
demon. They ran back to their father, crying, "There is a demon on the
bank of the lake."

The king ordered his men to catch the demon, and to bring it to the
palace. When the Turtle was brought in, the boys cried and ran away.

The king was very fond of his sons, so he ordered the men who had
brought the Turtle to kill it.

"How shall we kill it?" they asked.

"Pound it to powder," said some one. "Bake it in hot coals," said
another.

[Illustration: "Throw the thing into the lake."]

So one plan after another was spoken of. Then an old man who had always
been afraid of the water said: "Throw the thing into the lake where it
flows out over the rocks into the river. Then it will surely be killed."

When the Turtle heard what the old man said, he thrust out his head and
asked: "Friend, what have I done that you should do such a dreadful
thing as that to me? The other plans were bad enough, but to throw me
into the lake! Don't speak of such a cruel thing!"

When the king heard what the Turtle said, he told his men to take the
Turtle at once and throw it into the lake.

The Turtle laughed to himself as he slid away down the river to his old
home. "Good!" he said, "those people do not know how safe I am in the
water!"



III

THE MERCHANT OF SERI


There was once a merchant of Seri who sold brass and tinware. He went
from town to town, in company with another man, who also sold brass and
tinware. This second man was greedy, getting all he could for nothing,
and giving as little as he could for what he bought.

When they went into a town, they divided the streets between them. Each
man went up and down the streets he had chosen, calling, "Tinware for
sale. Brass for sale." People came out to their door-steps, and bought,
or traded, with them.

In one house there lived a poor old woman and her granddaughter. The
family had once been rich, but now the only thing they had left of all
their riches was a golden bowl. The grandmother did not know it was a
golden bowl, but she had kept this because her husband used to eat out
of it in the old days. It stood on a shelf among the other pots and
pans, and was not often used.

[Illustration: He threw the bowl on the ground.]

The greedy merchant passed this house, calling, "Buy my water-jars! Buy
my pans!" The granddaughter said: "Oh, Grandmother, do buy something
for me!"

"My dear," said the old woman, "we are too poor to buy anything. I have
not anything to trade, even."

"Grandmother, see what the merchant will give for the old bowl. We do
not use that, and perhaps he will take it and give us something we
want for it."

The old woman called the merchant and showed him the bowl, saying,
"Will you take this, sir, and give the little girl here something for
it?"

The greedy man took the bowl and scratched its side with a needle.
Thus he found that it was a golden bowl. He hoped he could get it for
nothing, so he said: "What is this worth? Not even a halfpenny." He
threw the bowl on the ground, and went away.

By and by the other merchant passed the house. For it was agreed that
either merchant might go through any street which the other had left.
He called: "Buy my water-jars! Buy my tinware! Buy my brass!"

The little girl heard him, and begged her grandmother to see what he
would give for the bowl.

"My child," said the grandmother, "the merchant who was just here threw
the bowl on the ground and went away. I have nothing else to offer in
trade."

"But, Grandmother," said the girl, "that was a cross man. This one
looks pleasant. Ask him. Perhaps he'll give some little tin dish."

"Call him, then, and show it to him," said the old woman.

As soon as the merchant took the bowl in his hands, he knew it was of
gold. He said: "All that I have here is not worth so much as this bowl.
It is a golden bowl. I am not rich enough to buy it."

"But, sir, a merchant who passed here a few moments ago, threw it on
the ground, saying it was not worth a halfpenny, and he went away,"
said the grandmother. "It was worth nothing to him. If you value it,
take it, giving the little girl some dish she likes for it."

But the merchant would not have it so. He gave the woman all the money
he had, and all his wares. "Give me but eight pennies," he said.

So he took the pennies, and left. Going quickly to the river, he paid
the boatman the eight pennies to take him across the river.

Soon the greedy merchant went back to the house where he had seen the
golden bowl, and said: "Bring that bowl to me, and I will give you
something for it."

"No," said the grandmother. "You said the bowl was worthless, but
another merchant has paid a great price for it, and taken it away."

[Illustration: "It is a golden bowl."]

Then the greedy merchant was angry, crying out, "Through this other man
I have lost a small fortune. That bowl was of gold."

He ran down to the riverside, and, seeing the other merchant in the
boat out in the river, he called: "Hallo, Boatman! Stop your boat!"

But the man in the boat said: "Don't stop!" So he reached the city on
the other side of the river, and lived well for a time on the money the
bowl brought him.



IV

THE TURTLE WHO COULDN'T STOP TALKING


A turtle lived in a pond at the foot of a hill. Two young wild Geese,
looking for food, saw the Turtle, and talked with him. The next day
the Geese came again to visit the Turtle and they became very well
acquainted. Soon they were great friends.

"Friend Turtle," the Geese said one day, "we have a beautiful home far
away. We are going to fly back to it to-morrow. It will be a long but
pleasant journey. Will you go with us?"

"How could I? I have no wings," said the Turtle.

"Oh, we will take you, if only you can keep your mouth shut, and say
not a word to anybody," they said.

"I can do that," said the Turtle. "Do take me with you. I will do
exactly as you wish."

[Illustration: "How could I go with you?" said the Turtle.]

So the next day the Geese brought a stick and they held the ends of it.
"Now take the middle of this in your mouth, and don't say a word until
we reach home," they said.

[Illustration: The Geese sprang into the air.]

The Geese then sprang into the air, with the Turtle between them,
holding fast to the stick.

The village children saw the two Geese flying along with the Turtle
and cried out: "Oh, see the Turtle up in the air! Look at the Geese
carrying a Turtle by a stick! Did you ever see anything more ridiculous
in your life!"

The Turtle looked down and began to say, "Well, and if my friends carry
me, what business is that of yours?" when he let go, and fell dead at
the feet of the children.

As the two Geese flew on, they heard the people say, when they came to
see the poor Turtle, "That fellow could not keep his mouth shut. He had
to talk, and so lost his life."

[Illustration: "Oh, see the Turtle up in the air."]



V

THE OX WHO WON THE FORFEIT


Long ago a man owned a very strong Ox. The owner was so proud of his
Ox, that he boasted to every man he met about how strong his Ox was.

One day the owner went into a village, and said to the men there: "I
will pay a forfeit of a thousand pieces of silver if my strong Ox
cannot draw a line of one hundred wagons."

The men laughed, and said: "Very well; bring your Ox, and we will tie a
hundred wagons in a line and see your Ox draw them along."

So the man brought his Ox into the village. A crowd gathered to see the
sight. The hundred carts were in line, and the strong Ox was yoked to
the first wagon.

Then the owner whipped his Ox, and said: "Get up, you wretch! Get
along, you rascal!"

But the Ox had never been talked to in that way, and he stood still.
Neither the blows nor the hard names could make him move.

[Illustration: "Get along, you rascal."]

At last the poor man paid his forfeit, and went sadly home. There he
threw himself on his bed and cried: "Why did that strong Ox act so?
Many a time he has moved heavier loads easily. Why did he shame me
before all those people?"

At last he got up and went about his work. When he went to feed the Ox
that night, the Ox turned to him and said: "Why did you whip me to-day?
You never whipped me before. Why did you call me 'wretch' and 'rascal'?
You never called me hard names before."

Then the man said: "I will never treat you badly again. I am sorry I
whipped you and called you names. I will never do so any more. Forgive
me."

"Very well," said the Ox. "To-morrow I will go into the village and
draw the one hundred carts for you. You have always been a kind master
until to-day. To-morrow you shall gain what you lost."

The next morning the owner fed the Ox well, and hung a garland of
flowers about his neck. When they went into the village the men laughed
at the man again.

They said: "Did you come back to lose more money?"

"To-day I will pay a forfeit of two thousand pieces of silver if my Ox
is not strong enough to pull the one hundred carts," said the owner.

So again the carts were placed in a line, and the Ox was yoked to the
first. A crowd came to watch again. The owner said: "Good Ox, show how
strong you are! You fine, fine creature!" And he patted his neck and
stroked his sides.

[Illustration: A garland of flowers about his neck.]

At once the Ox pulled with all his strength. The carts moved on until
the last cart stood where the first had been.

Then the crowd shouted, and they paid back the forfeit the man had
lost, saying: "Your Ox is the strongest Ox we ever saw."

And the Ox and the man went home, happy.



VI

THE SANDY ROAD


Once upon a time a merchant, with his goods packed in many carts, came
to a desert. He was on his way to the country on the other side of the
desert.

The sun shone on the fine sand, making it as hot as the top of a stove.
No man could walk on it in the sunlight. But at night, after the sun
went down, the sand cooled, and then men could travel upon it.

So the merchant waited until after dark, and then set out. Besides the
goods that he was going to sell, he took jars of water and of rice, and
firewood, so that the rice could be cooked.

All night long he and his men rode on and on. One man was the pilot. He
rode first, for he knew the stars, and by them he guided the drivers.

At daybreak they stopped and camped. They unyoked the oxen, and fed
them. They built fires and cooked the rice. Then they spread a great
awning over all the carts and the oxen, and the men lay down under it
to rest until sunset.

[Illustration: They built fires and cooked the rice.]

In the early evening, they again built fires and cooked rice. After
supper, they folded the awning and put it away. They yoked the oxen,
and, as soon as the sand was cool, they started again on their journey
across the desert.

Night after night they traveled in this way, resting during the heat
of the day. At last one morning the pilot said: "In one more night we
shall get out of the sand." The men were glad to hear this, for they
were tired.

After supper that night the merchant said: "You may as well throw away
nearly all the water and the firewood. By to-morrow we shall be in the
city. Yoke the oxen and start on."

Then the pilot took his place at the head of the line. But, instead of
sitting up and guiding the drivers, he lay down in the wagon on the
cushions. Soon he was fast asleep, because he had not slept for many
nights, and the light had been so strong in the daytime that he had not
slept well then.

All night long the oxen went on. Near daybreak, the pilot awoke and
looked at the last stars fading in the light. "Halt!" he called to the
drivers. "We are in the same place where we were yesterday. The oxen
must have turned about while I slept."

They unyoked the oxen, but there was no water for them to drink. They
had thrown away the water that was left the night before. So the
men spread the awning over the carts, and the oxen lay down, tired
and thirsty. The men, too, lay down saying, "The wood and water are
gone--we are lost."

But the merchant said to himself, "This is no time for me to sleep.
I must find water. The oxen cannot go on if they do not have water to
drink. The men must have water. They cannot cook the rice unless they
have water. If I give up, we shall all be lost!"

[Illustration: "There must be water somewhere below."]


On and on he walked, keeping close watch of the ground. At last he saw
a tuft of grass. "There must be water somewhere below, or that grass
would not be there," he said.

He ran back, shouting to the men, "Bring the spade and the hammer!"

They jumped up, and ran with him to the spot where the grass grew.
They began to dig, and by and by they struck a rock and could dig no
further. Then the merchant jumped down into the hole they had dug, and
put his ear to the rock. "I hear water running under this rock," he
called to them. "We must not give up!" Then the merchant came up out
of the hole and said to a serving-lad: "My boy, if you give up we are
lost! You go down and try!"

The boy stood up straight and raised the hammer high above his head
and hit the rock as hard as ever he could. He would not give in. They
must be saved. Down came the hammer. This time the rock broke. And the
boy had hardly time to get out of the well before it was full of cool
water. The men drank as if they never could get enough, and then they
watered the oxen, and bathed.

Then they split up their extra yokes and axles, and built a fire, and
cooked their rice. Feeling better, they rested through the day. They
set up a flag on the well for travelers to see.

At sundown, they started on again, and the next morning reached the
city, where they sold the goods, and then returned home.



VII

THE QUARREL OF THE QUAILS


Once upon a time many quails lived together in a forest. The wisest of
them all was their leader.

A man lived near the forest and earned his living by catching quails
and selling them. Day after day he listened to the note of the leader
calling the quails. By and by this man, the fowler, was able to call
the quails together. Hearing the note the quails thought it was their
leader who called.

When they were crowded together, the fowler threw his net over them and
off he went into the town, where he soon sold all the quails that he
had caught.

The wise leader saw the plan of the fowler for catching the quails. He
called the birds to him and said, "This fowler is carrying away so many
of us, we must put a stop to it. I have thought of a plan; it is this:
The next time the fowler throws a net over you, each of you must put
your head through one of the little holes in the net. Then all of you
together must fly away to the nearest thorn-bush. You can leave the net
on the thorn-bush and be free yourselves."

The quails said that was a very good plan and they would try it the
next time the fowler threw the net over them.

The very next day the fowler came and called them together. Then he
threw the net over them. The quails lifted the net and flew away with
it to the nearest thorn-bush where they left it. They flew back to
their leader to tell him how well his plan had worked.

The fowler was busy until evening getting his net off the thorns and he
went home empty-handed. The next day the same thing happened, and the
next. His wife was angry because he did not bring home any money, but
the fowler said, "The fact is those quails are working together now.
The moment my net is over them, off they fly with it, leaving it on a
thorn-bush. As soon as the quails begin to quarrel I shall be able to
catch them."

Not long after this, one of the quails in alighting on their feeding
ground, trod by accident on another's head. "Who trod on my head?"
angrily cried the second. "I did; but I didn't mean to. Don't be
angry," said the first quail, but the second quail was angry and said
mean things.

[Illustration: The quails lifted the net and flew away with it.]

Soon all the quails had taken sides in this quarrel. When the fowler
came that day he flung his net over them, and this time instead of
flying off with it, one side said, "Now, you lift the net," and the
other side said, "Lift it yourself."

"You try to make us lift it all," said the quails on one side. "No, we
don't!" said the others, "you begin and we will help," but neither side
began.

So the quails quarreled, and while they were quarreling the fowler
caught them all in his net. He took them to town and sold them for a
good price.

[Illustration: The fowler caught them all in his net.]



VIII

THE MEASURE OF RICE


At one time a dishonest king had a man called the Valuer in his
court. The Valuer set the price which ought to be paid for horses and
elephants and the other animals. He also set the price on jewelry and
gold, and things of that kind.

This man was honest and just, and set the proper price to be paid to
the owners of the goods.

The king was not pleased with this Valuer, because he was honest. "If
I had another sort of a man as Valuer, I might gain more riches," he
thought.

One day the king saw a stupid, miserly peasant come into the palace
yard. The king sent for the fellow and asked him if he would like to be
the Valuer. The peasant said he would like the position. So the king
had him made Valuer. He sent the honest Valuer away from the palace.

Then the peasant began to set the prices on horses and elephants, upon
gold and jewels. He did not know their value, so he would say anything
he chose. As the king had made him Valuer, the people had to sell their
goods for the price he set.

[Illustration: So they went before the king.]

By and by a horse-dealer brought five hundred horses to the court of
this king. The Valuer came and said they were worth a mere measure of
rice. So the king ordered the horse-dealer to be given the measure of
rice, and the horses to be put in the palace stables.

The horse-dealer went then to see the honest man who had been the
Valuer, and told him what had happened.

"What shall I do?" asked the horse-dealer.

"I think you can give a present to the Valuer which will make him do
and say what you want him to do and say," said the man. "Go to him and
give him a fine present, then say to him: 'You said the horses are
worth a measure of rice, but now tell what a measure of rice is worth!
Can you value that standing in your place by the king?' If he says he
can, go with him to the king, and I will be there, too."

The horse-dealer thought this was a good idea. So he took a fine
present to the Valuer, and said what the other man had told him to say.

The Valuer took the present, and said: "Yes, I can go before the king
with you and tell what a measure of rice is worth. I can value that
now."

"Well, let us go at once," said the horse-dealer. So they went before
the king and his ministers in the palace.

The horse-dealer bowed down before the king, and said: "O King, I have
learned that a measure of rice is the value of my five hundred horses.
But will the king be pleased to ask the Valuer what is the value of
the measure of rice?"

[Illustration: He ran away from the laughing crowd.]

The king, not knowing what had happened, asked: "How now, Valuer, what
are five hundred horses worth?"

"A measure of rice, O King!" said he.

"Very good, then! If five hundred horses are worth a measure of rice,
what is the measure of rice worth?"

"The measure of rice is worth your whole city," replied the foolish
fellow.

The ministers clapped their hands, laughing, and saying, "What a
foolish Valuer! How can such a man hold that office? We used to think
this great city was beyond price, but this man says it is worth only a
measure of rice."

Then the king was ashamed, and drove out the foolish fellow.

"I tried to please the king by setting a low price on the horses, and
now see what has happened to me!" said the Valuer, as he ran away from
the laughing crowd.



IX

THE FOOLISH, TIMID RABBIT


Once upon a time, a Rabbit was asleep under a palm-tree.

All at once he woke up, and thought: "What if the world should break
up! What then would become of me?"

At that moment, some Monkeys dropped a cocoanut. It fell down on the
ground just back of the Rabbit.

Hearing the noise, the Rabbit said to himself: "The earth is all
breaking up!"

And he jumped up and ran just as fast as he could, without even looking
back to see what made the noise.

[Illustration: He jumped up and ran.]

Another Rabbit saw him running, and called after him, "What are you
running so fast for?"

"Don't ask me!" he cried.

But the other Rabbit ran after him, begging to know what was the matter.

[Illustration: The lion.]

Then the first Rabbit said: "Don't you know? The earth is all breaking
up!"

And on he ran, and the second Rabbit ran with him.

The next Rabbit they met ran with them when he heard that the earth was
all breaking up.

One Rabbit after another joined them, until there were hundreds of
Rabbits running as fast as they could go.

They passed a Deer, calling out to him that the earth was all breaking
up. The Deer then ran with them.

[Illustration: Saw the animals running.]

The Deer called to a Fox to come along because the earth was all
breaking up.

On and on they ran, and an Elephant joined them.

At last the Lion saw the animals running, and heard their cry that the
earth was all breaking up.

He thought there must be some mistake, so he ran to the foot of a hill
in front of them and roared three times.

This stopped them, for they knew the voice of the King of Beasts, and
they feared him.

"Why are you running so fast?" asked the Lion.

"Oh, King Lion," they answered him, "the earth is all breaking up!"

"Who saw it breaking up?" asked the Lion.

"I didn't," said the Elephant. "Ask the Fox--he told me about it."

"I didn't," said the Fox.

"The Rabbits told me about it," said the Deer.

One after another of the Rabbits said: "I did not see it, but another
Rabbit told me about it."

At last the Lion came to the Rabbit who had first said the earth was
all breaking up.

"Is it true that the earth is all breaking up?" the Lion asked.

"Yes, O Lion, it is," said the Rabbit. "I was asleep under a palm-tree.
I woke up and thought, 'What would become of me if the earth should all
break up?' At that very moment, I heard the sound of the earth breaking
up, and I ran away."

"Then," said the Lion, "you and I will go back to the place where the
earth began to break up, and see what is the matter."

So the Lion put the little Rabbit on his back, and away they went like
the wind. The other animals waited for them at the foot of the hill.

The Rabbit told the Lion when they were near the place where he slept,
and the Lion saw just where the Rabbit had been sleeping.

He saw, too, the cocoanut that had fallen to the ground near by. Then
the Lion said to the Rabbit, "It must have been the sound of the
cocoanut falling to the ground that you heard. You foolish Rabbit!"

And the Lion ran back to the other animals, and told them all about it.

If it had not been for the wise King of Beasts, they might be running
still.

[Illustration: Away they went like the wind.]



X

THE WISE AND THE FOOLISH MERCHANT


Once upon a time in a certain country a thrifty merchant visited a
great city and bought a great supply of goods. He loaded wagons with
the goods, which he was going to sell as he traveled through the
country.

A stupid young merchant was buying goods in the same city. He, too, was
going to sell what he bought as he traveled through the country.

They were both ready to start at the same time.

The thrifty merchant thought, "We cannot travel together, for the men
will find it hard to get wood and water, and there will not be enough
grass for so many oxen. Either he or I ought to go first."

So he went to the young man and told him this, saying, "Will you go
before or come on after me?"

The other one thought, "It will be better for me to go first. I shall
then travel on a road that is not cut up. The oxen will eat grass that
has not been touched. The water will be clean. Also, I shall sell my
goods at what price I like." So he said, "Friend, I will go on first."

This answer pleased the thrifty merchant. He said to himself, "Those
who go before will make the rough places smooth. The old rank grass
will have been eaten by the oxen that have gone before, while my oxen
will eat the freshly grown tender shoots. Those who go before will dig
wells from which we shall drink. Then, too, I will not have to bother
about setting prices, but I can sell my goods at the prices set by the
other man." So he said aloud, "Very well, friend, you may go on first."

At once the foolish merchant started on his journey. Soon he had left
the city and was in the country. By and by he came to a desert which
he had to cross. So he filled great water-jars with water, loaded them
into a large wagon and started across the desert.

Now on the sands of this desert there lived a wicked demon. This demon
saw the foolish young merchant coming and thought to himself, "If I can
make him empty those water-jars, soon I shall be able to overcome him
and have him in my power."

So the demon went further along the road and changed himself into the
likeness of a noble gentleman. He called up a beautiful carriage, drawn
by milk-white oxen. Then he called ten other demons, dressed them like
men and armed them with bows and arrows, swords and shields. Seated
in his carriage, followed by the ten demons, he rode back to meet the
merchant. He put mud on the carriage wheels, hung water-lilies and wet
grasses upon the oxen and the carriage. Then he made the clothes the
demons wore and their hair all wet. Drops of water trickled down over
their faces just as if they had all come through a stream.

As the demons neared the foolish merchant they turned their carriage to
one side of the way, saying pleasantly, "Where are you going?"

The merchant replied, "We have come from the great city back there and
are going across the desert to the villages beyond. You come dripping
with mud and carrying water-lilies and grasses. Does it rain on the
road you have come by? Did you come through a stream?"

[Illustration: He put mud on the carriage wheels, hung water-lilies and
wet grasses upon the oxen and the carriage.]

The demon answered, "The dark streak across the sky is a forest. In it
there are ponds full of water-lilies. The rains come often. What have
you in all those carts?"

"Goods to be sold," replied the merchant.

"But in that last big heavy wagon what do you carry?" the demon asked.

"Jars full of water for the journey," answered the merchant.

The demon said, "You have done well to bring water as far as this,
but there is no need of it beyond. Empty out all that water and go on
easily." Then he added, "But we have delayed too long. Drive on!" And
he drove on until he was out of sight of the merchant. Then he returned
to his home with his followers to wait for the night to come.

The foolish merchant did as the demon bade him and emptied every jar,
saving not even a cupful. On and on they traveled and the streak on the
sky faded with the sunset. There was no forest, the dark line being
only clouds. No water was to be found. The men had no water to drink
and no food to eat, for they had no water in which to cook their rice,
so they went thirsty and supperless to bed. The oxen, too, were hungry
and thirsty and dropped down to sleep here and there. Late at night the
demons fell upon them and easily carried off every man. They drove the
oxen on ahead of them, but the loaded carts they did not care to take
away.

A month and a half after this the wise merchant followed over the same
road. He, too, was met on the desert by the demon just as the other
had been. But the wise man knew the man was a demon because he cast no
shadow. When the demon told him of the ponds in the forest ahead and
advised him to throw away the water-jars the wise merchant replied, "We
don't throw away the water we have until we get to a place where we see
there is more."

Then the demon drove on. But the men who were with the merchant said,
"Sir! those men told us that yonder was the beginning of a great
forest, and from there onwards it was always raining. Their clothes and
hair were dripping with water. Let us throw away the water-jars and go
on faster with lighter carts!"

Stopping all the carts the wise merchant asked the men, "Have you ever
heard any one say that there was a lake or pond in this desert? You
have lived near here always."

"We never heard of a pond or lake," they said.

"Does any man feel a wind laden with dampness blowing against him?" he
asked.

"No, sir," they answered.

"Can you see a rain cloud, any of you?" said he.

"No, sir, not one," they said.

"Those fellows were not men, they were demons!" said the wise merchant.
"They must have come out to make us throw away the water. Then when we
were faint and weak they might have put an end to us. Go on at once and
don't throw away a single half-pint of water."

[Illustration: He himself with the head men stood on guard.]

So they drove on and before nightfall they came upon the loaded wagons
belonging to the foolish merchant.

Then the thrifty merchant had his wagons drawn up in a circle. In the
middle of the circle he had the oxen lie down, and also some of the
men. He himself with the head men stood on guard, swords in hand and
waited for the demons. But the demons did not bother them. Early the
next day the thrifty merchant took the best of the wagons left by the
foolish merchant and went on safely to the city across the desert.

There he sold all the goods at a profit and returned with his company
to his own city.



XI

THE ELEPHANT GIRLY-FACE


Once upon a time a king had an Elephant named Girly-face. The Elephant
was called Girly-face because he was so gentle and good and looked so
kind. "Girly-face never hurts anybody," the keeper of the Elephants
often said.

Now one night some robbers came into the courtyard and sat on the
ground just outside the stall where Girly-face slept. The talk of the
robbers awoke Girly-face.

"This is the way to break into a house," they said. "Once inside the
house kill any one who wakens. A robber must not be afraid to kill. A
robber must be cruel and have no pity. He must never be good, even for
a moment."

Girly-face said to himself, "Those men are teaching me how I should
act. I will be cruel. I will show no pity. I will not be good--not even
for a moment."

[Illustration: The talk of the robbers awoke Girly-face.]

[Illustration: He picked him up in his trunk and threw the poor keeper
to the ground.]

So the next morning when the keeper came to feed Girly-face he picked
him up in his trunk and threw the poor keeper to the ground, killing
him.

Another keeper ran to see what the trouble was, and Girly-face killed
him, too.

For days and days Girly-face was so ugly that no one dared go near. The
food was left for him, but no man would go near him.

By and by the king heard of this and sent one of his wise men to find
out what ailed Girly-face.

The wise man had known Girly-face a long time. He looked the Elephant
over carefully and could find nothing that seemed to be the matter.

He thought at last, "Girly-face must have heard some bad men talking.
Have there been any bad men talking about here?" asked the wise man.

"Yes," one of the keepers said, "a band of robbers were caught here a
few weeks ago. They had met in the yard to talk over their plans. They
were talking together near the stall where Girly-face sleeps."

[Illustration: He looked the Elephant over carefully.]

So the wise man went back to the king. Said he, "I think Girly-face
has been listening to bad talk. If you will send some good men to talk
where Girly-face can hear them I think he will be a good Elephant
once more."

So that night the king sent a company of the best men to be found to
sit and talk near the stall where Girly-face lived. They said to one
another, "It is wrong to hurt any one. It is wrong to kill. Every one
should be gentle and good."

"Now those men are teaching me," thought Girly-face. "I must be gentle
and good. I must hurt no one. I must not kill any one." And from that
time on Girly-face was tame and as good as ever an Elephant could be.



XII

THE BANYAN DEER


There was once a Deer the color of gold. His eyes were like round
jewels, his horns were white as silver, his mouth was red like a
flower, his hoofs were bright and hard. He had a large body and a fine
tail.

He lived in a forest and was king of a herd of five hundred Banyan
Deer. Near by lived another herd of Deer, called the Monkey Deer. They,
too, had a king.

The king of that country was fond of hunting the Deer and eating deer
meat. He did not like to go alone so he called the people of his town
to go with him, day after day.

The townspeople did not like this for while they were gone no one did
their work. So they decided to make a park and drive the Deer into it.
Then the king could go into the park and hunt and they could go on with
their daily work.

They made a park, planted grass in it and provided water for the Deer,
built a fence all around it and drove the Deer into it.

Then they shut the gate and went to the king to tell him that in the
park near by he could find all the Deer he wanted.

The king went at once to look at the Deer. First he saw there the two
Deer kings, and granted them their lives. Then he looked at their great
herds.

Some days the king would go to hunt the Deer, sometimes his cook would
go. As soon as any of the Deer saw them they would shake with fear and
run. But when they had been hit once or twice they would drop down dead.

The King of the Banyan Deer sent for the King of the Monkey Deer and
said, "Friend, many of the Deer are being killed. Many are wounded
besides those who are killed. After this suppose one from my herd goes
up to be killed one day, and the next day let one from your herd go up.
Fewer Deer will be lost this way."

[Illustration: The King of the Banyan Deer sent for the King of the
Monkey Deer.]

The Monkey Deer agreed. Each day the Deer whose turn it was would go
and lie down, placing its head on the block. The cook would come and
carry off the one he found lying there.

One day the lot fell to a mother Deer who had a young baby. She went to
her king and said, "O King of the Monkey Deer, let the turn pass me by
until my baby is old enough to get along without me. Then I will go and
put my head on the block."

But the king did not help her. He told her that if the lot had fallen
to her she must die.

Then she went to the King of the Banyan Deer and asked him to save her.

"Go back to your herd. I will go in your place," said he.

The next day the cook found the King of the Banyan Deer lying with his
head on the block. The cook went to the king, who came himself to find
out about this.

"King of the Banyan Deer! did I not grant you your life? Why are you
lying here?"

"O great King!" said the King of the Banyan Deer, "a mother came with
her young baby and told me that the lot had fallen to her. I could not
ask any one else to take her place, so I came myself."

[Illustration: Rise up. I grant your life and hers.]

"King of the Banyan Deer! I never saw such kindness and mercy. Rise up.
I grant your life and hers. Nor will I hunt any more the Deer in either
park or forest."



XIII

THE PRINCES AND THE WATER-SPRITE


Once upon a time a king had three sons. The first was called Prince of
the Stars. The next was called the Moon Prince and the third was called
the Sun Prince. The king was so very happy when the third son was born
that he promised to give the queen any boon she might ask.

The queen kept the promise in mind, waiting until the third son was
grown before asking the king to give her the boon.

On the twenty-first birthday of the Sun Prince she said to the king,
"Great King, when our youngest child was born you said you would give
me a boon. Now I ask you to give the kingdom to Sun Prince."

But the king refused, saying that the kingdom must go to the oldest
son, for it belonged by right to him. Next it would belong by right to
the second son, and not until they were both dead could the kingdom go
to the third son.

The queen went away, but the king saw that she was not pleased with his
answer. He feared that she would do harm to the older princes to get
them out of the way of the Sun Prince.

So he called his elder sons and told them that they must go and live
in the forest until his death. "Then come back and reign in the city
that is yours by right," he said. And with tears he kissed them on the
foreheads and sent them away.

As they were going down out of the palace, after saying good-by to
their father, the Sun Prince called to them, "Where are you going?"

And when he heard where they were going and why, he said, "I will go
with you, my brothers."

So off they started. They went on and on and by and by they reached the
forest. There they sat down to rest in the shade of a pond. Then the
eldest brother said to Sun Prince, "Go down to the pond and bathe and
drink. Then bring us a drink while we rest here."

Now the King of the Fairies had given this pond to a water-sprite. The
Fairy King had said to the water-sprite, "You are to have in your power
all who go down into the water except those who give the right answer
to one question. Those who give the right answer will not be in your
power. The question is, 'What are the Good Fairies like?'"

[Illustration: The Sun Prince went into the pond.]

When the Sun Prince went into the pond the water-sprite saw him and
asked him the question, "What are the Good Fairies like?"

"They are like the Sun and the Moon," said the Sun Prince.

"You don't know what the Good Fairies are like," cried the
water-sprite, and he carried the poor boy down into his cave.

By and by the eldest brother said, "Moon Prince, go down and see why
our brother stays so long in the pond!"

As soon as the Moon Prince reached the water's edge the water-sprite
called to him and said, "Tell me what the Good Fairies are like!"

"Like the sky above us," replied the Moon Prince.

"You don't know, either," said the water-sprite, and dragged the Moon
Prince down into the cave where the Sun Prince sat.

"Something must have happened to those two brothers of mine," thought
the eldest. So he went to the pond and saw the marks of the footsteps
where his brothers had gone down into the water. Then he knew that a
water-sprite must live in that pond. He girded on his sword, and stood
with his bow in his hand.

The water-sprite soon came along in the form of a woodsman.

"You seem tired, Friend," he said to the prince. "Why don't you bathe
in the lake and then lie on the bank and rest?"

[Illustration: The water-sprite in the form of a woodsman.]

But the prince knew that it was a water-sprite and he said, "You have
carried off my brothers!"

"Yes," said the water-sprite.

"Why did you carry them off?"

"Because they did not answer my question," said the water-sprite, "and
I have power over all who go down into the water except those who do
give the right answer."

"I will answer your question," said the eldest brother. And he did.
"The Good Fairies are like

    The pure in heart who fear to sin,
    The good, kindly in word and deed."

"O Wise Prince, I will bring back to you one of your brothers. Which
shall I bring?" said the water-sprite.

"Bring me the younger one," said the prince. "It was on his account
that our father sent us away. I could never go away with Moon Prince
and leave poor Sun Prince here."

"O Wise Prince, you know what the good should do and you are kind. I
will bring back both your brothers," said the water-sprite.

After that the three princes lived together in the forest until the
king died. Then they went back to the palace. The eldest brother was
made king and he had his brothers rule with him. He also built a home
for the water-sprite in the palace grounds.



XIV

THE KING'S WHITE ELEPHANT


Once upon a time a number of carpenters lived on a river bank near a
large forest. Every day the carpenters went in boats to the forest to
cut down the trees and make them into lumber.

One day while they were at work an Elephant came limping on three feet
to them. He held up one foot and the carpenters saw that it was swollen
and sore. Then the Elephant lay down and the men saw that there was a
great splinter in the sore foot. They pulled it out and washed the sore
carefully so that in a short time it would be well again.

Thankful for the cure, the Elephant thought: "These carpenters have
done so much for me, I must be useful to them."

So after that the Elephant used to pull up trees for the carpenters.
Sometimes when the trees were chopped down he would roll the logs down
to the river. Other times he brought their tools for them. And the
carpenters used to feed him well morning, noon and night.

[Illustration: He held up one foot and the carpenters saw that it was
swollen and sore.]

Now this Elephant had a son who was white all over--a beautiful, strong
young one. Said the old Elephant to himself, "I will take my son to the
place in the forest where I go to work each day so that he may learn to
help the carpenters, for I am no longer young and strong."

[Illustration: The Elephant used to pull up trees for the carpenters.]

So the old Elephant told his son how the carpenters had taken good care
of him when he was badly hurt and took him to them. The white Elephant
did as his father told him to do and helped the carpenters and they
fed him well.

When the work was done at night the young Elephant went to play in the
river. The carpenters' children played with him, in the water and on
the bank. He liked to pick them up in his trunk and set them on the
high branches of the trees and then let them climb down on his back.

[Illustration: With a last look at his playmates the beautiful white
Elephant went on with the king.]

One day the king came down the river and saw this beautiful white
Elephant working for the carpenters. The king at once wanted the
Elephant for his own and paid the carpenters a great price for him.
Then with a last look at his playmates, the children, the beautiful
white Elephant went on with the king.

The king was proud of his new Elephant and took the best care of him as
long as he lived.



XV

THE OX WHO ENVIED THE PIG


Once upon a time there was an Ox named Big Red. He had a younger
brother named Little Red. These two brothers did all the carting on a
large farm.

Now the farmer had an only daughter and she was soon to be married.
Her mother gave orders that the Pig should be fattened for the wedding
feast.

Little Red noticed that the Pig was fed on choice food. He said to his
brother, "How is it, Big Red, that you and I are given only straw and
grass to eat, while we do all the hard work on the farm? That lazy Pig
does nothing but eat the choice food the farmer gives him."

Said his brother, "My dear Little Red, envy him not. That little Pig is
eating the food of death! He is being fattened for the wedding feast.
Eat your straw and grass and be content and live long."

[Illustration: Little Red noticed that the Pig was fed on choice food.]

[Illustration: The fattened Pig was killed and cooked for the wedding
feast.]

Not long afterwards the fattened Pig was killed and cooked for the
wedding feast.

Then Big Red said, "Did you see, Little Red, what became of the Pig
after all his fine feeding?"

"Yes," said the little brother, "we can go on eating plain food for
years, but the poor little Pig ate the food of death and now he is
dead. His feed was good while it lasted, but it did not last long."



XVI

GRANNY'S BLACKIE


Once upon a time a rich man gave a baby Elephant to a woman.

She took the best of care of this great baby and soon became very fond
of him.

The children in the village called her Granny, and they called the
Elephant "Granny's Blackie."

The Elephant carried the children on his back all over the village.
They shared their goodies with him and he played with them.

"Please, Blackie, give us a swing," they said to him almost every day.

"Come on! Who is first?" Blackie answered and picked them up with
his trunk, swung them high in the air, and then put them down again,
carefully.

But Blackie never did any work.

He ate and slept, played with the children, and visited with Granny.

One day Blackie wanted Granny to go off to the woods with him.

[Illustration: Blackie swung them high in the air.]

"I can't go, Blackie, dear. I have too much work to do."

Then Blackie looked at her and saw that she was growing old and feeble.

"I am young and strong," he thought. "I'll see if I cannot find some
work to do. If I could bring some money home to her, she would not have
to work so hard."

So next morning, bright and early, he started down to the river bank.

There he found a man who was in great trouble. There was a long line of
wagons so heavily loaded that the oxen could not draw them through the
shallow water.

When the man saw Blackie standing on the bank he asked, "Who owns this
Elephant? I want to hire him to help my Oxen pull these wagons across
the river."

A child standing near by said, "That is Granny's Blackie."

"Very well," said the man, "I'll pay two pieces of silver for each
wagon this Elephant draws across the river."

Blackie was glad to hear this promise. He went into the river, and
drew one wagon after another across to the other side.

Then he went up to the man for the money.

The man counted out one piece of silver for each wagon.

When Blackie saw that the man had counted out but one piece of silver
for each wagon, instead of two, he would not touch the money at all. He
stood in the road and would not let the wagons pass him.

The man tried to get Blackie out of the way, but not one step would he
move.

Then the man went back and counted out another piece of silver for each
of the wagons and put the silver in a bag tied around Blackie's neck.

Then Blackie started for home, proud to think that he had a present for
Granny.

The children had missed Blackie and had asked Granny where he was, but
she said she did not know where he had gone.

They all looked for him but it was nearly night before they heard him
coming.

"Where have you been, Blackie? And what is that around your neck?" the
children cried, running to meet their playmate.

[Illustration: He would not touch the money at all.]

[Illustration: Blackie told her that he had earned some money for her.]

But Blackie would not stop to talk with his playmates. He ran straight
home to Granny.

"Oh, Blackie!" she said, "Where have you been? What is in that bag?"
And she took the bag off his neck.

Blackie told her that he had earned some money for her.

"Oh, Blackie, Blackie," said Granny, "how hard you must have worked to
earn these pieces of silver! What a good Blackie you are!"

And after that Blackie did all the hard work and Granny rested, and
they were both very happy.



XVII

THE CRAB AND THE CRANE


In the Long Ago there was a summer when very little rain fell.

All the Animals suffered for want of water, but the Fishes suffered
most of all.

In one pond full of Fishes, the water was very low indeed.

A Crane sat on the bank watching the Fishes.

"What are you doing?" asked a little Fish.

"I am thinking about you Fishes there in the pond. It is so nearly
dry," answered the Crane.

"Yes," the Crane went on, "I was wishing I might do something for you.
I know of a pond in the deep woods where there is plenty of water."

"I declare," said the little Fish, "you are the first Crane that ever
offered to help a Fish."

"That may be," said the Crane, "but the water is so low in your pond. I
could easily carry you one by one on my back to that other pond where
there is plenty of water and food and cool shade."

"I don't believe there is any such pond," said the little Fish. "What
you wish to do is to eat us, one by one."

"If you don't believe me," said the Crane, "send with me one of the
Fishes whom you can believe. I'll show him the pond and bring him back
to tell you all about it."

A big Fish heard the Crane and said, "I will go with you to see the
pond--I may as well be eaten by the Crane as to die here."

So the Crane put the big Fish on his back and started for the deep
woods.

Soon the Crane showed the big Fish the pool of water. "See how cool and
shady it is here," he said, "and how much larger the pond is, and how
full it is!"

"Yes!" said the big Fish, "take me back to the little pond and I'll
tell the other Fishes all about it." So back they went.

The Fishes all wanted to go when they heard the big Fish talk about the
fine pond which he had seen.

[Illustration: So the Crane put the big Fish on his back and started
for the deep woods.]

Then the Crane picked up another Fish and carried it away. Not to the
pool, but into the woods where the other Fishes could not see them.

Then the Crane put the Fish down and ate it. The Crane went back for
another Fish. He carried it to the same place in the woods and ate it,
too.

This he did until he had eaten all the Fishes in the pond.

The next day the Crane went to the pond to see if he had left a Fish.
There was not one left, but there was a Crab on the sand.

"Little Crab," said the Crane, "would you let me take you to the fine
pond in the deep woods where I took the Fishes?"

"But how could you carry me?" asked the Crab.

"Oh, easily," answered the Crane. "I'll take you on my back as I did
the Fishes."

"No, I thank you," said the Crab, "I can't go that way. I am afraid you
might drop me. If I could take hold of your neck with my claws, I would
go. You know we Crabs have a tight grip."

The Crane knew about the tight grip of the Crabs, and he did not like
to have the Crab hold on with his claws. But he was hungry, so he said:

"Very well, hold tight."

[Illustration: And off went the Crane with the Crab.]

And off went the Crane with the Crab.

When they reached the place where the Crane had eaten the Fishes, the
Crane said:

"I think you can walk the rest of the way. Let go of my neck."

"I see no pond," said the Crab. "All I can see is a pile of Fish bones.
Is that all that is left of the Fishes?"

"Yes," said the Crane, "and if you will let go of my neck, your shell
will be all that will be left of you."

And the Crane put his head down near the ground so that the Crab could
get off easily.

But the Crab pinched the Crane's neck so that his head fell off.

"Not my shell, but your bones are left to dry with the bones of the
Fishes," said the Crab.



XVIII

WHY THE OWL IS NOT KING OF THE BIRDS


Why is it that Crows torment the Owls as they sleep in the daytime? For
the same reason that the Owls try to kill the Crows while they sleep at
night.

Listen to a tale of long ago and then you will see why.

Once upon a time, the people who lived together when the world was
young took a certain man for their king. The four-footed animals also
took one of their number for their king. The fish in the ocean chose
a king to rule over them. Then the birds gathered together on a great
flat rock, crying:

"Among men there is a king, and among the beasts, and the fish have
one, too; but we birds have none. We ought to have a king. Let us
choose one now."

And so the birds talked the matter over and at last they all said, "Let
us have the Owl for our king."

[Illustration: "See how sour he looks right now."]

No, not all, for one old Crow rose up and said, "For my part, I don't
want the Owl to be our king. Look at him now while you are all crying
that you want him for your king. See how sour he looks right now. If
that's the cross look he wears when he is happy, how will he look when
he is angry? I, for one, want no such sour-looking king!"

Then the Crow flew up into the air crying, "I don't like it! I don't
like it!" The Owl rose and followed him. From that time on the Crows
and the Owls have been enemies. The birds chose a Turtle Dove to be
their king, and then flew to their homes.


THE END





*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Jakata tales" ***

Doctrine Publishing Corporation provides digitized public domain materials.
Public domain books belong to the public and we are merely their custodians.
This effort is time consuming and expensive, so in order to keep providing
this resource, we have taken steps to prevent abuse by commercial parties,
including placing technical restrictions on automated querying.

We also ask that you:

+ Make non-commercial use of the files We designed Doctrine Publishing
Corporation's ISYS search for use by individuals, and we request that you
use these files for personal, non-commercial purposes.

+ Refrain from automated querying Do not send automated queries of any sort
to Doctrine Publishing's system: If you are conducting research on machine
translation, optical character recognition or other areas where access to a
large amount of text is helpful, please contact us. We encourage the use of
public domain materials for these purposes and may be able to help.

+ Keep it legal -  Whatever your use, remember that you are responsible for
ensuring that what you are doing is legal. Do not assume that just because
we believe a book is in the public domain for users in the United States,
that the work is also in the public domain for users in other countries.
Whether a book is still in copyright varies from country to country, and we
can't offer guidance on whether any specific use of any specific book is
allowed. Please do not assume that a book's appearance in Doctrine Publishing
ISYS search  means it can be used in any manner anywhere in the world.
Copyright infringement liability can be quite severe.

About ISYS® Search Software
Established in 1988, ISYS Search Software is a global supplier of enterprise
search solutions for business and government.  The company's award-winning
software suite offers a broad range of search, navigation and discovery
solutions for desktop search, intranet search, SharePoint search and embedded
search applications.  ISYS has been deployed by thousands of organizations
operating in a variety of industries, including government, legal, law
enforcement, financial services, healthcare and recruitment.



Home