Folk tales Collection

51 stories

Nelly, the Knocker

By

On the stone, at the dead hour of the night, might be discerned a female figure wrapped in a grey cloak. She was incessantly knock, knock, knocking, in a fruitless endeavour to split the impenetrable rock.

EuropeEnglandNorthumberland

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Peach Darling

By

As he was going along a dog came up and sniffed hungrily at the dumplings. Peach Darling thought, ‘This poor dog is hungry, and I can do with one less dumpling.’ So he gave a dumpling to the dog.

East AsiaJapan

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Robin Hood

Unknown writer

No man could travel alone through Sherwood Forest, without being stripped of his money.

EuropeEngland

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Sindbad the Sailor

Unknown writer

Sindbad’s life is full of peril, full of shipwrecks, full of famine; full of riches of great worth, full of every thing but truth.

Arab worldMiddle East

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The Animals’ Peace Party

By

The young pigs and the old ones talked together and the old ones said, ‘Maybe they will have some good things for us to eat at the party. I think we should go.’

East AsiaChina

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The City of Fortune

By

They took out what remained of Rupert's heart and put a pretty one inside of him, made of steel, but hard as a diamond. Only one little fibre escaped their search, which passed unnoticed behind the metal heart.

EuropeSpain

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The Evergreen Tree and the Wilderness Marigold

By

These people take our flowers home. Some of us they put in baskets and call basket flowers. Some they put in the maidens’ hair and they call us maiden flowers.

East AsiaChina

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The Good Thunder

By

Rai-Taro grew up straight and strong, the tallest, gayest boy of all that country-side. He was the delight of his foster-parents, and all the neighbours loved him.

East AsiaJapan

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The Grinding-Stone that Ground Flour by Itself

By and

Spider's cousin, while hunting one morning, had discovered a wonderful stone that ground flour of its own accord. Not being a greedy man, he took away with him only enough for his family's needs.

AfricaEast Africa

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The History of Jack Jingle

Unknown writer

Jack ran away crying as loud as he could, ‘A Shilling! a penny! a halfpenny! and a plumcake! Huzza!’ till he came to his father's cottage.

EuropeEngland

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The History of Whittington and his Cat

Unknown writer

Poor Dick ran off as fast as his legs could carry him; he walked about the streets till it grew dark, and finding nothing but dirt instead of gold, he sat down in a corner, and cried himself to sleep.

EuropeEngland

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The King’s Son and the Magic Song

By and

The Fairy also taught him a magic song, ‘Come, cattle, come, all you cattle come to me,’ the melody of which was so enchanting that all cattle who heard it followed the singer.

AfricaSouth AfricaSwazi People

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The Little Birds Who Lived in a Cave

By and

A tiny bird entered the cave and flew straight to a little bird who was only a hen. ‘You,’ said he, ‘shall kill the blackbird.’

AfricaSouth AfricaZulu People

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The Old Man with a Wart

By

The old man could not sit still. He sprang into the midst of the group and began to dance. He seemed to be dancing like the trees and flowers. Like a willow by the river he bent and swayed and bowed.

East AsiaJapan

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The Sea King and the Magic Jewels

By

Prince Fire Fade spoke to his elder brother, Prince Fire Flash, and said, ‘Brother, I am aweary of the green hills. Therefore let us now exchange our luck.’

East AsiaJapan

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The Spectre Coach

By

Then, all of a sudden, the gates swung back with a terrible clang, and there issued as strange a procession as Tom’s, or indeed mortal’s, eyes ever set on.

EuropeEnglandSuffolk

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The Squirrel and the Spider

By and

Squirrel appealed to the law, but the court decided that no one had ever had a farm without a road leading to it, therefore the fields must be Spider’s.

AfricaEast Africa

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The Star Lovers

By

Now the Maiden's father, the Deity of Light, grew angry. He said, ‘Daughter, you weave too much.’ ‘It is my duty,’ she said.

East AsiaJapan

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The Tavistock Witch

By

The boy, forgetting himself in a moment of alarm, was heard to exclaim: ‘Run, granny, run; run for your life!’

EuropeEnglandDevon

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The Tea-Kettle

By

And then, the wonderful thing happened. A hairy head, with two bright eyes, looked out of the spout. The lid jumped up and down. Four brown and hairy paws appeared, and a fine bushy tail.

East AsiaJapan

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