Tales of the Punjab

Flora Annie Steel

Tales Of The Punjab [with accents]

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Title: Tales Of The Punjab
Author: Flora Annie Steel
Release Date: July, 2004 [EBook #6145] [Yes, we are more than one year ahead of schedule] [This file was first posted on November 19, 2002]
Edition: 10
Language: English
Character set encoding: ISO-8859-1

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To the Little Reader
Sir Buzz The Rat's Wedding The Faithful Prince The Bear's Bad Bargain Prince Lionheart and his Three Friends The Lambkin Bopol?ch? Princess Aubergine Valiant Vicky, the Brave Weaver The Son of Seven Mothers The Sparrow and the Crow The Tiger, the Brahman, and the Jackal The King of the Crocodiles Little Anklebone The Close Alliance The Two Brothers The Jackal and the Iguana The Death and Burial of Poor Hen-Sparrow Princess Pepperina Peasie and Beansir The Jackal and the Partridge The Snake-woman and King Ali Mardan The Wonderful Ring The Jackal and the Pea-hen The Grain of Corn The Farmer and the Money-lender The Lord of Death The Wrestlers The Legend of Gwashbrari, the Glacier-Hearted Queen The Barber's Clever Wife The Jackal and the Crocodile How Raja Rasalu Was Born How Raja Rasalu Went Out Into the World How Raja Rasalu's Friends Forsook Him How Raja Rasalu Killed the Giants How Raja Rasalu Became a J?gi How Raja Rasalu Journeyed to the City of King Sarkap How Raja Rasalu Swung the Seventy Fair Maidens, Daughters of the King How Raja Rasalu Played Chaupur with King Sarkap The King Who Was Fried Prince Half-a-Son The Mother and Daughter Who Worshipped the Sun The Ruby Prince
Notes to the Tales

Many of the tales in this collection appeared either in the _Indian Antiquary_, the _Calcutta Review_, or the Legends of the Punjab. They were then in the form of literal translations, in many cases uncouth or even unpresentable to ears polite, in all scarcely intelligible to the untravelled English reader; for it must be remembered that, with the exception of the Adventures of Raja Rasalu, all these stories are strictly folk-tales passing current among a people who can neither read nor write, and whose diction is full of colloquialisms, and, if we choose to call them so, vulgarisms. It would be manifestly unfair, for instance, to compare the literary standard of such tales with that of the _Arabian Nights_, the _Tales of a Parrot_, or similar works. The manner in which these stories were collected is in itself sufficient to show how misleading it would be, if, with the intention of giving the conventional Eastern flavour to the text, it were to be manipulated into a flowery dignity; and as a description of the procedure will serve the double purpose of credential and excuse, the authors give it,--premising that all the stories but three have been collected by Mrs. F. A. Steel during winter tours through the various districts of which her husband has been Chief Magistrate.
A carpet is spread under a tree in the vicinity of the spot which the Magistrate has chosen for his _darbar_, but far enough away from bureaucracy to let the village idlers approach it should they feel so inclined. In a very few minutes, as a rule, some of them begin to edge up to it, and as they are generally small boys, they commence nudging each other, whispering, and sniggering. The fancied approach of a _chupras?_, the 'corrupt lictor' of India, who attends at every _darbar_, will however cause a sudden stampede; but after a time these become less and less frequent, the wild beasts, as it were, becoming tamer. By and by a group of women stop to gaze, and then the question 'What do you want?' invariably brings the answer 'To see your honour' (_ap ke darshan ae_). Once the ice is broken, the only difficulties are, first, to understand
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