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TITLE
The Wise Folk
EXTERNAL ID
HC_GAELICSTORYTAPE_014
DATE OF RECORDING
1997
PERIOD
1990s
CREATOR
unknown
SOURCE
The Highland Council
ASSET ID
2347
KEYWORDS
oral tradition
folklore
stories
Gaelic
story telling
audio

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This story is recorded in Gaelic and the following is an English translation.

The Wise Folk.

Once upon a time there lived, in a little village, people who did such foolish and strange things that they called them "The wise folk".

These wise folk liked to hear the cuckoo singing. Now, in our country the cuckoo sings only during a month or two at the beginning of summer. But the wise folk wanted to hear it from end to end of the year, and they decided at last that they would try to make it sing all the time.

They all assembled in a park near the village in which they lived. There were large, tall trees growing all round this park. The poor people therefore thought that there was now no way of getting out of the park or into it. So then, they caught a cuckoo and put it into the park.

"You had better stay there from now on", said they, "And sing for us all year, otherwise you'll get nothing to eat."

As soon as the cuckoo was in the park it rose up on the wing and off it went to the woods. The wise folk stood for an instant quite speechless, looking at one another in amazement. Then one of them said, "Just you think of that!! It must be that the trees weren't tall enough."

One day, one of the wise folk went to the town and bought a three-legged stool. He set off briskly home with the stool but after a while he grew tired. He put the stool down on the ground and he sat down beside it. Then he faced the stool and said to it, "Aren't you the lazy one! You have three legs and I have only two. You are, therefore, much better at walking than I am. You can just go home on your own then."

He set off then and left the stool there and went home on his own. His wife was waiting for him, standing at the door of the cottage in which they lived.

"Where was the stool you were going to bring me?" she asked. The poor old man didn't know what to say when he heard this.

"What do you mean?" he said. "Surely to goodness it's here now! It has three legs, hasn't it? I have only two. I thought it would arrive home much faster than myself. It should have been here a long time ago."

"You useless, hopeless man," said his wife in a temper; and off she went to see if she could find the stool. She found it right enough, just where he had left it, and she carried it home...and the old man sat on it!

This story is from a collection of stories available on tape, with an accompanying book, under the title 'Am Bloigh Beag le Beannachd'

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The Wise Folk

1990s

oral tradition; folklore; stories; Gaelic; story telling; audio

The Highland Council

Am Bloigh Beag le Beannachd (Cassette)

This story is recorded in Gaelic and the following is an English translation.<br /> <br /> The Wise Folk.<br /> <br /> Once upon a time there lived, in a little village, people who did such foolish and strange things that they called them "The wise folk".<br /> <br /> These wise folk liked to hear the cuckoo singing. Now, in our country the cuckoo sings only during a month or two at the beginning of summer. But the wise folk wanted to hear it from end to end of the year, and they decided at last that they would try to make it sing all the time.<br /> <br /> They all assembled in a park near the village in which they lived. There were large, tall trees growing all round this park. The poor people therefore thought that there was now no way of getting out of the park or into it. So then, they caught a cuckoo and put it into the park.<br /> <br /> "You had better stay there from now on", said they, "And sing for us all year, otherwise you'll get nothing to eat."<br /> <br /> As soon as the cuckoo was in the park it rose up on the wing and off it went to the woods. The wise folk stood for an instant quite speechless, looking at one another in amazement. Then one of them said, "Just you think of that!! It must be that the trees weren't tall enough."<br /> <br /> One day, one of the wise folk went to the town and bought a three-legged stool. He set off briskly home with the stool but after a while he grew tired. He put the stool down on the ground and he sat down beside it. Then he faced the stool and said to it, "Aren't you the lazy one! You have three legs and I have only two. You are, therefore, much better at walking than I am. You can just go home on your own then."<br /> <br /> He set off then and left the stool there and went home on his own. His wife was waiting for him, standing at the door of the cottage in which they lived.<br /> <br /> "Where was the stool you were going to bring me?" she asked. The poor old man didn't know what to say when he heard this.<br /> <br /> "What do you mean?" he said. "Surely to goodness it's here now! It has three legs, hasn't it? I have only two. I thought it would arrive home much faster than myself. It should have been here a long time ago."<br /> <br /> "You useless, hopeless man," said his wife in a temper; and off she went to see if she could find the stool. She found it right enough, just where he had left it, and she carried it home...and the old man sat on it!<br /> <br /> This story is from a collection of stories available on tape, with an accompanying book, under the title 'Am Bloigh Beag le Beannachd'