How the Monkey Became a Trickster


How the Monkey Became a Trickster

A Brazilian fairy tale

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Once upon a time there was a beautiful garden in which grew all sorts of fruits. Many beasts lived in the garden and they were permitted to eat of the fruits whenever they wished. But they were asked to observe one rule. They must make a low, polite bow to the fruit tree, call it […]

Finders Keepers

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A Story of work and greed from Ghana One day the squirrel was looking for new places to farm. The squirrel had farmed so much on his current farm that the land was not fertile anymore. The squirrel went to the tops of the trees so that he could see all the land around and […]

The Twelve Dancing Princesses

From the Brothers Grimm

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There was a king who had twelve beautiful daughters. They slept in twelve beds all in one room; and when they went to bed, the doors were shut and locked up; but every morning their shoes were found to be quite worn through as if they had been danced in all night; and yet nobody […]

An Aesop Fable A slave named Androcles once escaped from his master and fled to the forest. As he was wandering about there he came upon a lion lying down moaning and groaning. At first he turned to flee, but finding that the lion did not pursue him, he turned back and went up to […]

The Collared Crow

A tale from Africa

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Once upon a time there were a man and his wife who had lived together for years, but they had no children to look after them in their old age. This was very sad for them, but they had no idea what to do about it. You can neither make nor order children, nor do […]

A tale by Fanny Hagin Mayer in her book Ancient Tales in Modern Japan. (Definitions in this story.  A Jizo is a popular icon in Japan that is a protector of children and travelers. Mochi is a Japanese rice cake made of glutinous rice pounded into paste and molded into shape.) Once upon a time […]

The Apples of Youth and the Living Water

A warrior adventure tale from Russia

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In a certain kingdom, in a certain land, there lived a Tsar, and he had three sons. The eldest was named Fedor, he second was named Vasilli, and the youngest was named Ivan. This Tsar was in his old age, and his eyesight was poor. And he heard that beyond three-nine lands, into the three-tenth […]

A Lenni Lenape tale as retold by S. E. Schlosser It was so cold. Snow fell constantly, and ice formed over all the waters. The animals had never seen snow before. At first, it was a novelty, something to play in. But the cold increased tenfold, and they began to worry. The little animals were […]

Yu’pik (a Native Alaskan tribe) myth about the orgin of earthquakes One time Spider Woman and her sister were arguing about who should cook food there in the sky camp, one would pull the food and try to jerk it away from her sister.  When Negury’aq, Spider Woman’s husband returned from hunting he heard all […]

Martha and the Meadowlark

Lev Ropes

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The Strange Visitor

From When The Lights Go Out: Twenty Scary Tales To Tell by Margaret Read MacDonald

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There was an old woman sat all alone in her cabin one night spinning her wool. And so she sat, and so she spun, and so she waited for someone to come. Then there came a knocking on the door. Come in! Called the old woman. Screeeeak went the door. And in came a pair […]

The Legend of the Bluebonnet

A Comanche Legend

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Long ago in the land we now call Texas there was a drought.  It had not rained for a long, long time.  The ground was so dry and parched that nothing grew and the animals and the Comanche Indian people who lived there were dying of hunger. The people had danced and drummed and prayed […]

The Six Swans

A Grimm’s Fairy Tale

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A king was once hunting in a great forest, and he chased his prey so eagerly that none of his men could follow him. As evening approached he stopped and looked around, and saw that he was lost. He looked for a way out of the woods, but he could not find one. Then he […]

The Man Who Had No Story

a tale from Ireland

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Once there was a man who lived in Barr an Ghaoith long ago, his name was Brian Ó Braonachain. He would cut rods, make them into baskets, and sell them. One day there wasn’t a rod he hadn’t already cut, made into a basket, and sold; Brian didn’t know what to do. There was a […]

Silver Hoof

A tale from Russia

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A long time ago, there was an old widowed hunter named Kokovanya. He was lonely so he adopted Daryonka, a poor little orphan girl. When he took Daryonka into his home with him, he also let her bring her scrawny kitten. Kokovanya, Daryonka, and the kitten were not rich but they had a good life. […]

Gold Tree and Silver Tree

Scottish fairy tale collected by Joseph Jacobs in his Celtic Fairy Tales. It is Aarne-Thompson type to Snow White.

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Once upon a time there was a king who had a wife, whose name was Silver-tree, and a daughter, whose name was Gold-tree. On a certain day of the days, Gold-tree and Silver-tree went to a glen, where there was a well, and in it there was a trout. Said Silver-tree, “Troutie, bonny little fellow, […]

The Three Army Surgeons

A grisly Grimm's Fairy Tale

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Three army surgeons, who thought they knew their art perfectly, were traveling about the world. When they came to an inn where they wanted to pass the night. The host asked from where they came, and where they were going? “We are roaming about the world and practicing our art.” “Show me what you can […]

The North Wind and the Sun

Unknown Author

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Once in a far-away time on a cool winter day the North Wind and the Sun were having an argument about who was the strongest. “Let us decide by having a contest,” said the Sun. They looked down from the sky and saw a man walking on a winding road. He was wearing a warm […]

The Rich Man’s Guest

A tale from Turkey

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Many years ago there lived a very wise king in a country far from here.  One day while he was out riding he passed a beautiful house. “Who lives in that house?” he asked. “O king,” answered the servant, “the richest man in the country lives there.  He gives the most wonderful feasts every day […]

The Monster That Grew Small

By Aaron McEmrys

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Far to the south, beyond the great river, there was a small village, where a boy lived with his uncle.  The uncle was known far and wide as “The Brave One,” for he was a mighty hunter, but the boy was called “Miobi,” which meant, basically – “Scaredy-Cat” because he did not like to hunt, […]

The Three Laughs

Jewish (Hasidic - Poland)

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When the Baal Shem Tov laughs three times during the Sabbath meal, his disciples ask him to explain. He was inspired by an elderly bookbinder who sang and danced on the Sabbath in celebration of his many years of marriage. The man is recognized for celebrating his true love for his wife, even if on […]

An Achomawi Legend Sixty little spider children shivered as they slept. Snow had fallen every day for months. All the animals were cold, hungry, and frightened. Food supplies were almost gone. No one knew what to do. Blue jay and Redheaded Woodpecker sang and danced for Silver Gray Fox, who floats above the clouds. Since […]

Native American Story from the Sammish people of the Northwest (This is a Native American Story from the Sammish people of the Northwest as heard told on the web by Johnny Moses whose traditional name is Walking Medicine.) Long ago there lived a very large grandmother cedar tree.  She was tall and strong, but she […]

The Frog Princess

Unknown Author

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Once long ago there was a peasant woman who had three sons. Though they were peasants they were well off, for the soil on which they lived was fruitful, and yielded rich crops. One day the sons told their mother they wished to get married. “Do as you like”, said their mother, “but see that […]

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