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so happened that a great forest-fire arose and threatened to engulf the serpent's lair. The serpent was in a state of consternation and could find no means of extricating himself from the perilous situation. A beggar happened to pass by the place with a wicker wallet slung over his shoulder. The snake saw the man and appealed to him for succour. Said the mendicant :-"How can I befriend one who is man's avowed enemy? Were I to save you your first act will perhaps be to swallow your benefactor.” On this the snake swore hard and took many solemn oaths and appealed so abjectly as to melt the beggar's heart. The man mad, a long arm and placed his bag in front of the snake's hole. The snake promptly jumped into the bag and was rescued from the fire. As soon as he found himself out of danger the snake proceeded to devour the beggar calling him a fool for having saved his enemy. As if to add insult to injury he said :--" Don't you know that it is only natural for me to prey on men? Herein no injustice is involved. It is but a fulfilment of Nature's law.” The poor beggar began to lament piteously and he roundly charged the snake with ingratitude. At last it was agreed that the matter should be referred to arbitration. So they went on together in order to find some one who could settle the point one way or the other. They at last met an old ox and told him about the facts of the matter and asked him to pronounce his decision. The ox thus addressed the snake :-- Man is forsooth an ungrateful creature. Just see, I ploughed his lands for him and toiled and moiled for him while I was young, but now that I am stricken in years he refuses to give me food and has turned me out of doors. It is well that you should swallow up this beggar.” The man would not accept the verdict and demanded an unbiassed tribunal. The snake agreed and the two went on their way until they met an ewe and acquainted her with the facts. The ewe said to the snake :--" It is well that

you should eat up

Look at man's perfidy. I gave birth to many a lamb but the greedy fellow killed them all and ate them, and now that I have become old and weak he will not give me any fodder and I have been turned adrift to eke out a miserable existence as best I can." The man said :--- No, I cannot aocept her verdict. She is too full of prejudice against man to return a true award. Let

the man.

us place the matter before an unbiassed arbitrator. So they continued their journey until they met a fox. The fox was duly acquainted with the facts and then he said in a grave and golemn tone:

"It is impossible for one to arbitrate as I cannot accept the facts which you have placed before me. It is an impossible story that you have stated. How can I believe that só big a snake found room in so tiny a wallet ? I would reserve my verdict until I have seen the miracle accomplished in my presence. Upon this the snake quite unsuspectingly re-entered the bag, and uttered a' cry to assure the fox that he was really inside. The fox now gave a significant hint to the mendicant who, acting on the hint, promptly secured the flap of the wallet with a piece of string and killed the snake. Thus the fox by his adroitness managed to save the man's life.*

24.-The STORY OF A Dakua +

A Mupờã had occasion to pay a visit to the Piş Mānki, and he was attended, as usual by his Dakua: The Mundá såluted the Mānki and when the Dakua, who was inexperienced in these matters, saw this he inferred that the Mānki was superior in rank to the Muņdā. To make sure, he asked the Mundā if the Mānki was indeed his superior, and when he was re-assured on the point he expressed a desire to become the Mānki's Dakua. His wish was gratified. One day the Mānki went on a visit to the King and the Dākua as is usual on such occasions, accompa

* Cf. Story No. 14 in Vol. II, Part III, p. 289 of this Journal and also stories Nos. 20 and 22 ante.

+ Under the revende system in force in the Kolhan there ale 73' local divisions, each comprising a group of villages. Each of these divisions has a Mãnki o; divisions head-man who is responsible for the collection of revenue and exercises the powers of a Police Sub-Inspector. Each Manki has ander him Mundãs or village headmen exercising revenge and Police powers in each village. Mãnkis and Mandãs have under them Dakgås who act as revende messengers and Police constables.

was so.

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nied the Manki. The Mānki made his obeisance to the King, and on seeing him do so the Dakua took it that the King must be superior in rank to the Mānki. He questioned the Manki on the point and when he came to know for certain that the King's rank was superior to the Mānki's he wanted to become the King's Dakua. His request was granted. One day the King went into the jungles to hunt and on seeing a fox he nodded to that animal. Seeing that the Dakua fancied that the fox must be superior to the King and he asked the King if that

The King said :-"Yes, indeed, the fox is my superior.” The Dakua told the king that he would in that case prefer the service of the fox. His request was again granted and he became the fox’s Dakua. The fox soon began to regard the Dakui as an incubus as the latter constantly followed him about and hardly gave bim a chance of enjoying a quiet meal. The fox hit upon a plan in order to get rid of the man. He gave his Dakua an ox and said :-“You have served me faithfully. This is your reward. Take it home with you. You need not dance attendance on me any longer.” While on his way home, the man passed a night in a certain village and put up in the house of a Teli (an oil-manufacturer), and tied the ox to the wooden oilmill. At day-break the Teli gave out that his will had brought forth an ox over-night. The Dakua pleaded in vain that it was his own ox and that he had kept it tied to the mill-post. As his claim was stoutly contested by the Teli there was nothing for him but to lay the matter before the King. The King heard both the claimants and failing to decide the claim asked the Dakua to produce the fox to testify to his ownership of the disputed ox. The Dakua went and told the fox all about his trouble and asked him to appear before the King and give his testimony, Said the fox :-" Very well go ahead and tcil the King to have

all the dogs in his palace tied up securely. I will appear before his majesty in due course." On receiving this message the King ordered all the dogs to be secured with ropes, and then the fox came and lay down in front of the royal court and nodded off into a doze. The King spoke aloud and asked him as to what

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the facts of the case were. The fox half opened his eyes just for one moment and went off to sleep again. The King was greatly offended and called upon the fox peremptorily to give his testimony on oath as to the point in issue. The fox stretched his limbs and yawned and then he said :-"My lord, the sea caught fire last night and I had to pass a sleepless night in trying to put out the fire. Hence the drowsiness that is creeping on me in your royal presence." Said the king :-"What nonsense you are

: talking; it is impossible for the sea to be on fire.” “Indeed, Sire,” said the fox; “ but equally impossible is it for a piece of dry wood to bring forth a live ox.” The man then got back his

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ox.

25.—THE STORY OF A BRIDE, A young woman's marriage had been duly arranged and a day was appointed for the wedding. hr older brother's wife

Hər told her to go into the jungle, and pluck leaves for the purpose of making plates and cups for the entertainment of the bridegroom's party, and the woman further suggested that she should deposit the leaves under different Roong creepers (the fibrous bark of which is used as ropes). The young woman did exactly as she was bidden, but her sister-in-law (Hili) nagged her about the small quantity of leaves she had collected and told her to go into the jungles again and fetch more leaves. The poor bride returned to the jungles to fetch more leaves although it was a late hour when it was unsafe for people to be alone in the wild country; and in the gloaming she encountered a huge tiger. The tiger thus addressed her :“What are you searching for, my dear grand-child ?" Said the young bride :-"Grand-papa, I have to go to my brothers in order to entertain them with my songs and earn my wages.” The tiger pointed to his den and said :-"Well then, go over to

.“ my house and sit there until your brothers who have gone ahunting (sangar*) return home.” She accordingly went and seated herself at the entrance to the great tiger's cave. When the tigers returned from their hunt the great one said to them :-"Here is your sister. What have you done about giving her a warm welcome ?”

Mundari sendera.

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Thereupon some of them bronght rice, some brought cookingpots while others brought salt, turmeric and dishes and then they asked her to cook the meat and rice. After they had alb dined the great tiger sail to the maiden :-"Come now my grand-child and sing to your brothers.” She then started singing this song :

Bo'tedo ițulad mițulad

Kāța'tedo dārpil mārpil." [Note- This is a sort of gibberish which appears to constitute a barbed innuenda referring to the disproportion in size between the large head (60') and small lege (kata') of a tiger.]

The great tiger interrupted her and said :-" "My dear granddaughter, you will offend your brothers by singing this song. Sing to them a better one." She then began to sing another song :

Rupa rupā norāgo norāgod ko
Tiri-riu tiri-riu koado

Lih sālong lih.sālong." [Translation (free) :-There goes a handsome swain, playing a tane on a flate as he gambles along.] As soon as she commenced this song all the tigers joined hands (each placing one foot on the shoulder of the tiger next to it) and began to dance. The tigers were greatly, delighted, and gave her nice clothes, anklets (andu) an1 bracelets. (sākom, to bedeck herself with. In this manner did she regale the tigers: from day to day. After some time bad elapsed the young woman thus addressed the great tiger :-" Dear grandfather, I am dying of ennui. Do let me go to my people for a change. I will come back again to you.” Her prayer was readily grant: ed. A basketful of rice, one jar full of Diang (rice-beer), and a castrated goat were given to her to serve as viatienm and the great tiger deputed two of the tigers to see her home and particularly warned them to behave properly on the way. After going some distance her attendants asked her how fax away her bome was ; to which she replied :-" My home is in the kingdom of Tu-tu-goyākan.” The two tigers, repeated their inquiry reyeral times, but each time she gave them the same answer.

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