Philippine Folk-Tales eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 222 pages of information about Philippine Folk-Tales.

Now, every day the kingfisher laid one egg, and that day she laid her egg as usual.  But when the egg hatched out, it was no feathered nestling, but a baby-boy, that broke the shell.

“Oh!” cried the frightened bird.  “What will become of me?” Then she ran off a little way from her nest, and started to fly away.

But the little boy cried out, “Mother, mother, don’t be afraid of me!”

So the kingfisher came back to her baby.  And the child grew bigger every day.

After a while, the boy was old enough to walk and play around.  Then one day he went alone to the house of the Maganud, and climbed up the steps and looked in at the door.  The Maganud was sitting there on the floor of his house; and the little boy ran up to him and hugged him, and cried for joy.  But the Maganud was startled and dismayed; for he was a chaste malaki, [126] and had no children.  Yet this boy called him “father,” and begged for ripe bananas in a very familiar manner.  After they had talked for a little while, the Maganud went with the child to the home of the kingfisher.

The kingfisher had made her nest at the foot of a great hollow tree.  She had dug out a hole, about four feet deep, in the soft ground, and fixed a roof by heaping over the hole the powdered rotten bark of the old tree.  The roof stood up just a few inches above the ground; and when the Maganud saw it, he thought it was a mere little heap of earth.  Immediately, however, as he looked at the lowly nest, it became a fine house with walls of gold, and pillars of ivory.  The eaves were all hung with little bells (korung-korung [127]); and the whole house was radiantly bright, for over it forked lighting played continually.

The kingfisher took off her feather coat, and became a lovely woman, and then she and the Malaki were married.  They had bananas and cocoanut-groves, and all things, and they became rich people.

The Woman and the Squirrel

One day a woman went out to find water.  She had no water to drink, because all the streams were dried up.  As she went along, she saw some water in a leaf.  She drank it, and washed her body.  As soon as she had drunk the water, her head began to hurt.  Then she went home, spread out a mat, lay down on it, and went to sleep.  She slept for nine days.  When she woke up, she took a comb and combed her hair.  As she combed it, a squirrel-baby came out from her hair.  After the baby had been in the house one week, it began to grow and jump about.  It staid up under the roof of the house.

One day the Squirrel said to his mother, “O mother!  I want you to go to the house of the Datu who is called ‘sultan,’ and take these nine kamagi [128] and these nine finger-rings to pay for the sultan’s daughter, because I want to marry her.”

Then the mother went to the sultan’s house and remained there an hour.  The sultan said, “What do you want?”

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Project Gutenberg
Philippine Folk-Tales from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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