Myth, Ritual, and Religion/Volume 2/Chapter 18

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CHAPTER XVIII.

HEROIC AND ROMANTIC MYTHS.

A new class of myths—Not explanatory—Popular tales—Heroic and romantic myths—(1.) Savage tales—(2.) European Contes—(3.) Heroic myths—Their origin—Diffusion—History of their study—Grimm's theory—Aryan theory—Benfey's theory—Ancient Egyptian stories examined—Wanderung's theorie—Conclusion.

The myths which have hitherto been examined possess, for the most part, one common feature. All, or almost all of them, obviously aim at satisfying curiosity about the causes of things, at supplying gaps in human knowledge. The nature-myths account for various aspects of Nature, from the reed by the river-side that once was a fair maiden pursued by Pan, to the remotest star that was a mistress of Zeus; from the reason why the crow is black, to the reason why the sun is darkened in eclipse. The divine myths, again, are for the more part essays in the same direction. They try to answer these questions: "Who made things?" "How did this world begin?" "What are the powers, felt to be greater than ourselves, which regulate the order of events and control the destinies of men?" Myths reply to all these questionings, and the answers are always in accordance with that early nebulous condition of thought and reason where observation lapses into superstition, religion into science, science into fancy, knowledge into fable. In the same manner the myths which we do not treat of here—the myths of the origin of death, of man's first possession of fire, and of the nature of his home among the dead—are all tentative contributions to knowledge. All seek to satisfy the eternal human desire to know. "Whence came death?" man asks, and the myths answer him with a story of Pandora, of Maui, of the moon and the hare, or the bat and the tree. "How came fire to be a servant of ours?" The myths tell of Prometheus the fire-stealer, or of the fire-stealing wren, or frog, or coyote, or cuttlefish. "What manner of life shall men live after death? in what manner of home?" The myth answers with tales of Pohjola, of Hades, of Amenti, of all that, in the Australian black-fellow's phrase, "lies beyond the Rummut," beyond the surf of the Pacific, beyond the "stream of Oceanus," beyond the horizon of mortality. To these myths, and to the more mysterious legend of the Flood, we may return some other day. For the present, it must suffice to repeat that all these myths (except, perhaps, the traditions of the Deluge) fill up gaps in early human knowledge, and convey information as to matters outside of practical experience.

But there are classes of tales, or märchen, or myths which, as far as can be discovered, have but little of the explanatory element. Though they have been interpreted as broken-down nature-myths, the variety of the interpretations put upon them proves that, at least, their elemental meaning is dim and uncertain, and makes it very dubious whether they ever had any such significance at all. It is not denied here that some of these myths and tales may have been suggested by elemental and meteorological phenomena. For example, when we find almost everywhere among European peasants, and among Samoyeds and Zulus, as in Greek heroic-myths of the Jason cycle, the story of the children who run away from a cannibal or murderous mother or stepmother, we are reminded of certain nature-myths. The stars are often said[1] to be the children of the sun, and to flee away at dawn, lest he or their mother, the moon, should devour them. This early observation may have started the story of flight from the cannibal parents, and the legend may have been brought down from heaven to earth. Yet this were, perhaps, a far-fetched hypothesis of the origin of a tale which may readily have been born wherever human beings have a tendency (as in North America and South Africa) to revert to cannibalism.

The peculiarity, then, of the myths which we propose to call "Heroic and Romantic Tales" (märchen, contes populaires), is the absence, as a rule, of any obvious explanatory purpose. They are romances or novels, and if they do explain anything, it is rather the origin or sanction of some human law or custom than the cause of any natural phenomenon that they expound.

The kind of traditional fictions here described as heroic and romantic may be divided into three main categories.

(1.) First we have the popular tales of the lower and more backward races, with whom may be reckoned, for our present purpose, the more remote and obscure peoples of America. We find popular tales among the Bushmen, Kaffirs, Zulus, Samoans, Maoris, Hurons, Samoyeds, Eskimo, Crees, Blackfeet, and other so-called savage races. We also find tales practically identical in character, and often in plot and incident, among such a people as the Huarochiris, a civilised race brought under the Inca Empire some three generations before the Spanish conquest. The characteristics of these tales are the presence of talking and magically helpful beasts; the human powers and personal existence of even inanimate objects; the miraculous accomplishments of the actors; the introduction of beings of another race, usually hostile; the power of going to and returning from Hades—always described in much the same imaginative manner. The persons are sometimes anonymous, sometimes are named while the name is not celebrated; more frequently the tribal culture-hero, demiurge, or god is the leading character in these stories. In accordance with the habits of savage fancy, the chief person is often a beast, such as Ananzi, the West African spider; Cagn, the Bushman grasshopper; or Michabo, the Algonkin white hare. Animals frequently take parts assigned to men and women in European märchen.

(2.) In the second place, we have the märchen, or contes, or household tales of the modern European, Asiatic, and Indian peasantry, the tales collected by the Grimms, by Afanasief, by Yon Hahn, by Miss Frere, by Miss Maivé Stokes, by M. Sébillot, by Campbell of Islay, and by so many others. Every reader of these delightful collections knows that the characteristics, the machinery, all that excites wonder, are the same as in the savage heroic tales just described. But it is a peculiarity of the popular tales of the peasantry that the places are seldom named; the story is not localised, and the characters are anonymous. Occasionally our Lord and his saints appear, and Satan is pretty frequently present, always to be defeated and disgraced; but, as a rule, the hero is "a boy," "a poor man," "a fiddler," "a soldier," and so forth, no names being given.

(3.) Thirdly, we have in epic poetry and legend the romantic and heroic tales of the great civilised races, or races which have proved capable of civilisation. These are the Indians, the Greeks, Romans, Celts, Scandinavians, and Germans. These have won their way into the national literatures and the region of epic. We find them in the Odyssey, the Edda, the Celtic poems, the Ramayana, and they even appear in the Veda. They occur in the legends and pedigrees of the royal heroes of Greece and Germany. They attach themselves to the dim beginnings of actual history, and to real personages like Charlemagne. They even invade the legends of the saints. The characters are national heroes, such as Perseus, Jason, Œdipus, and Olympian gods, and holy men and women dear to the Church, and primal heroes of the North, Sigurd and Signy. Their paths and places are not in dim fairyland, but in the fields and on the shores we know—at Roland's Pass in the Pyrenees, on the enchanted Colchian coast, or among the blameless Ethiopians, or in Thessaly or in Argos.

Now, in all these three classes of romance, savage fables, rural märchen, Greek or German epics, the ideas and incidents are analogous, and the very conduct of the plot is sometimes recognisably the same. The moral ideas on which many of the märchen, sagas, or epic myths turn are often identical. Everywhere we find doors or vessels which are not to be opened, regulations for the conduct of husband and wife which are not to be broken; everywhere we find helpful beasts, birds, and fishes; everywhere we find legends proving that one cannot outwit his fate or evade the destiny prophesied for him.

The chief problems raised by these sagas and stories are—(1.) How do they come to resemble each other so closely in all parts of the world? (2.) Were they invented once for all, and transmitted all across the world from some centre? (3.) What was that centre, and what was the period and the process of transmission?

Before examining the solutions of those problems, certain considerations may be advanced.

The supernatural stuff of the stories, the threads of the texture, the belief in the life and personality of all things—in talking beasts and trees, in magical powers, in the possibility of visiting the dead—must, on our theory as already set forth, be found wherever men have either passed through savagery, and retained survivals of their intellectual condition, and wherever they have borrowed or imitated such survivals.

By this means, without further research, we may account for the similarity of the stuff of heroic myths and märchen. The stuff is the same as in nature-myths and divine myths.

But how is the similarity of the arrangement of the incidents and ideas into plots to be accounted for? The sagas, epic myths, and märchen do not appear to resemble each other everywhere (as the nature-myths do), because they are the same ideas applied to the explanation of the same set of natural facts. The sagas, epics, and märchen seem to explain nothing, but to be told, in the first instance, either to illustrate and enforce a moral, or for the mere pleasure of imaginative narration.

We are thus left, provisionally, with the notion that occasionally the resemblance of plot and arrangement may be accidental. In shaking the mental kaleidoscope, which contains a given assortment of ideas, the same combination may not impossibly be now and then produced everywhere. Or the story may have been invented once for all in one centre, but at a period so incalculably remote that it has filtered, in the exchanges and contacts of prehistoric life, all over the world, even to or from the Western Pacific and the lonely Oceanic Islands. Or, once more, the story may have had a centre in the Old World, say, in India; may have been carried to Europe by oral tradition or in literary vehicles, like the Pantschatantra or the Hitopadesa; may have reached the sailors, and trappers, and miners of civilisation, and may have been communicated by them (in times subsequent to the discovery of America by Columbus) to the backward races of the world.

These are preliminary statements of possibilities, and theories more or less based on those ideas are now to be examined.

The best plan may be to trace briefly the history of the study of popular tales. As early as Charles Perrault's time (1696), popular traditional tales had attracted some curiosity, more or less scientific. Mademoiselle L'Héritier, the Abbé Villiers, and even the writer of the dedication of Perrault's Contes to Mademoiselle, had expressed opinions as to the purposes for which they were first told, and the time and place where they probably arose. The Troubadours, the Arabs, and the fanciful invention of peasant nurses were vaguely talked of as possible first authors of the popular tales. About the same time, Huet, Bishop of Avranches, had remarked that the Hurons in North America amused their winter leisure with narratives in which beasts endowed with speech and reason were the chief characters.

Little was done to secure the scientific satisfaction of curiosity about traditional folk-tales, contes, or märchen till the time when the brothers Grimm collected the stones of Hesse. The Grimms became aware that the stories were common to the peasant class in most European lands, and that they were also known in India and the East. As they went on collecting, they learned that African and North American tribes also had their märchen, not differing greatly in character from the stories familiar to German firesides.

Already Sir Walter Scott had observed, in a note to the Lady of the Lake, that "a work of great interest might be compiled upon the origin of popular fiction, and the transmission of similar tales from age to age, and from country to country. The mythology of one period would then appear to pass into the romance of the next, and that into the nursery tales of subsequent ages." This opinion has long been almost universal. Thus, if the story of Jason is found in Greek myths, and also, with a difference, in popular modern märchen, the notion has been that the märchen is the last and youngest form, the detritus of the myth. Now, as the myth is only known from literary sources (Homer, Mimnermus, Apollonius Rhodius, Euripides, and so on), it must follow, on this theory, that the people had borrowed from the literature of the more cultivated classes. As a matter of fact, literature has borrowed far more from the people than the people have borrowed from literature, though both processes have been at work in the course of history. But the question of the relations of märchen to myths, and of both to romance, may be left unanswered for the moment. More pressing questions are, what is the origin, and where the original home of the märchen or popular tales, and how have they been so widely diffused all over the world?

The answers given to these questions have naturally been modified by the widening knowledge of the subject. One answer seemed plausible when only the common character of European contes was known; another was needed when the Aryan peoples of the East were found to have the same stories; another, or a modification of the second, was called for when märchen like those of Europe were found among the Negroes, the Indians of Brazil, the ancient Huarochiri of Peru, the people of Madagascar, the Samoyeds, the Samoans, the Dènè Hareskins of the extreme American North-West, the Zulus and Kaffirs, the Bushmen, the Finns, the Japanese, the Arabs, and the Swahilis.

The Grimms, in the appendix to their Household Tales,[2] give a list of the stories with which they were acquainted. Out of Europe they note first the literary collections of the East, the Thousand and One Nights and the Hitopadesa, which, with the Book of Sindabad, and the Pantschatantra, and the Katharit Sagara, contain almost all of the Oriental tales that filtered into Western literature through written translations. The Grimms had not our store of folk-tales recently collected from the lips of the Aryan and non-Aryan natives of Hindostan, such as the works of Miss Maivé Stokes, of Miss Frere, of Captain Steel, of Mr. Lal Behar Day, and the few Santal stories. But the Grimms had some Kalmuck stories.[3] One or two Chinese and Japanese examples had fallen into their hands, and all this as early as 1822. In later years they picked up a Malay story, some Bechuana tales, Koelle's Kanuri or Bornu stories, Schoolcraft's and James Athearn Jones's North American legends, Finnish, Esthonian, and Mongolian narratives, and an increasing store of European contes. The Grimms were thus not unaware that the märchen, with their surprising resemblances of plot and incident, had a circulation far beyond the limits of the Aryan peoples. They were specially struck, as was natural, by the reappearance of incidents analogous to those of the German contes (such as Machandelboom and the Singing Bone, 47, 28) among the remote Bechuanas of South Africa. They found, too, that in Sierra Leone beasts and birds play the chief parts in märchen. "They have a much closer connection with humanity, . . . nay, they have even priests," as the animals in Guiana have peays or sorcerers of their own. "Only the beasts of the country itself appear in the märchen." Among these Bornu legends they found several tales analogous to Faithful John (6), and to one in Straparola's Piacevoli Notti (Venice, 1550), a story, by the way, which recurs among the Santals, an "aboriginal" tribe of India. It is the tale of the man who knows the language of animals, and is warned by them against telling secrets to women. Among the Indians of North America Grimm found the analogue of his tale (182) of the Elves' Gifts, which, by the way, also illustrates a proverb in Japan. Finnish, Tartar, and Indian analogues were discovered in plenty.

Such were Grimm's materials; much less abundant than ours, indeed, but sufficient to show him that "the resemblance existing between the stories, not only of nations widely removed from each other by time and distance, but also between those which lie near together, consists partly in the underlying idea and the delineation of particular characters, and partly in the weaving together and unravelling of incidents." How are these resemblances to be explained? that is the question. Grimm's answer was, as ours must still be, only a suggestion. "There are situations so simple and natural that they reappear everywhere, just like the isolated words which are produced in a nearly or entirely identical form in languages which have no connection with each other, by the mere imitation of natural sounds." Thus to a certain, but in Grimm's opinion to a very limited extent, the existence of similar situations in the märchen of the most widely separated peoples is the result of the common facts of human thought and sentiment.

To repeat a convenient illustration, if we find talking and rational beasts and inanimate objects, and the occurrence of metamorphosis and of magic, and of cannibals and of ghosts (as we do), in the märchen as in the higher myths of all the world, and if we also find certain curious human customs in the contes, these resemblances may be explained as born of the same early condition of human fancy, which regards all known things as personal and animated, which believes in ghosts and magic, while men also behave in accordance with customs now obsolete and forgotten in civilisation. These common facts are the threads (as we have said) in the cloth of myth and märchen. They were supplied by the universal early conditions of the prescientific human intellect. Thus the stuff of märchen is everywhere the same. But why are the patterns—the situations, and the arrangements, and sequence of incidents—also remarkably similar in the contes of unrelated and unconnected tribes and races everywhere?

Here the difficulty begins in earnest.

It is clearly not enough to force the analogy, and reply that the patterns of early fabrics and the decorations of early weapons, of pottery, tattooing marks, and so forth, are also things universally human.[4] The close resemblances of undeveloped Greek and Mexican and other early artistic work are interesting, but may be accounted for by similarity of materials, of instruments, of suggestions from natural objects, and of inexperience in design. The selection of similar situations and of similar patterns into which these are interwoven by Greeks, Huarochiris of Peru, and Samoans or Eskimo, is much more puzzling to account for.

Grimm gives some examples, in which he thinks that the ideas, and their collocations in the story, can only have originally occurred to one mind, once for all. How is the wide distribution of such a story to be accounted for? Grimm first admits as rare exceptions "the probability of a story's passing from one people to another, and firmly rooting itself in foreign soil." But such cases, he says, are "one or two solitary exceptions," whereas the diffusion of stories which, in his opinion, could only have been invented once for all is an extensive phenomenon. He goes on to say, "We shall be asked where the outermost lines of common property in stories begin, and how the lines of affinity are gradated?" His answer was not satisfactory even to himself, and the additions to our knowledge have deprived it of any value. "The outermost lines are coterminous with those of the great race which is called Indo-Germanic." Outside of the Indo-Germanic, or "Aryan" race, that is to say, are found none of the märchen which are discovered within the borders of that race. But Grimm knew very well himself that this was an erroneous belief. "We see with amazement in such of the stories of the Negroes of Bornu and the Bechuanas (a wandering tribe in South Africa) as we have become acquainted with an undeniable connection with the German ones, while at the same time their peculiar composition distinguishes them from these." So Grimm, though he found "no decided resemblance" in North American stories, admitted that the boundaries of common property in märchen did include more than the "Indo-Germanic" race. Bechuanas, and Negroes, and Finns, as he adds, and as Sir George Dasent saw,[5] are certainly within the fold.

There William Grimm left the question in 1856. His tendency apparently was to explain the community of the märchen on the hypothesis that they were the original common store of the undivided Aryan people, carried abroad in the long wanderings of the race. But he felt that the presence of the märchen among Bechuanas, Negroes, and Finns was not thus to be explained. At the same time he closed the doors against a theory of borrowing, except in "solitary exceptions," and against the belief in frequent, separate, and independent evolution of the same story in various unconnected regions. Thus Grimm states the question, but does not pretend to have supplied its answer.

The solutions offered on the hypothesis that the märchen are exclusively Aryan, and that they are the detritus or youngest and latest form of myths, while these myths are concerned with the elemental phenomena of Nature, and arose out of the decay of language, have been so frequently criticised that they need not long detain us.[6] The most recent review of the system is by M. Cosquin.[7] In place of repeating objections which have been frequently urged by the present writer, an abstract of M. Cosquin's reasons for differing from the "Aryan" theory of Von Hahn may be given. Von Hahn was the collector and editor of stories from the modern Greek,[8] and his work is scholarly and accomplished. He drew up comparative tables, showing the correspondence between Greek and German märchen on the one side, and Greek and Teutonic epics and higher legends or sagas on the other. He also attempted to classify the stories in a certain number of recurring formulæ or plots. In Von Hahn's opinion, the stories were originally the myths of the undivided Aryan people in its central Asian home. As the different branches scattered and separated, they carried with them their common store of myths, which were gradually worn down into the detritus of popular stories, "the youngest form of the myth." The same theory appeared (in 1859) in Mr. Max Müller's Chips from a German Workshop.[9] The undivided Aryan people possessed, in its mythological and proverbial phraseology, the seeds or germs, more or less developed, which would flourish, under any sky, into very similar plants,—that is, the popular stories.

Against these ideas M. Cosquin argues, that if the Aryan people before its division preserved the myths only in their earliest germinal form, it is incredible that, when the separated branches had lost touch of each other, the final shape of their myths, the märchen, should have so closely resembled each other as they do. The Aryan theory (as it may be called for the sake of brevity) rejects, as a rule, the idea that tales can, as a rule, have been borrowed, even by one Aryan people from another.[10] "Nursery tales are generally the last things to be borrowed by one nation from another."[11] Then, says M. Cosquin, as the undivided Aryan people had only the myths in their least developed state, and as the existing peasantry have only the detritus of these myths—the märchen—and as you say borrowing is out of the question, how do you account for a coincidence like this? In the Punjaub, among the Bretons, the Albanians, the modern Greeks, and the Russians, we find a conte in which a young man gets possession of a magical ring. This ring is stolen from him, and recovered by the aid of certain grateful beasts, whom the young man has benefited. His foe keeps the ring in his mouth, but the grateful mouse, insinuating his tail into the nose of the thief, makes him sneeze, and out comes the magical ring!

Common-sense insists, says M. Cosquin, that this detail was invented once for all. It must have first occurred, not in a myth, but in a conte or märchen, from which all the others alike proceed. Therefore, if you wish the idea of the mouse and the ring and the sneeze to be a part of the store of the undivided Aryans, you must admit that they had contes, märchen, popular stories, what you call the detritus of myths, as well as myths themselves, before they left their cradle in Central Asia. "Nos ancêtres, les pères des nations européennes, auraient, de cette façon, emporté dans leurs fourgons la collection complete de contes bleus actuels." In short, if there was no borrowing, myths had been reduced (on the Aryan theory) to the condition of detritus, to the diamond dust of märchen, before the Aryan people divided. But this is contrary to the hypothesis.

M. Cosquin does not pause here. The märchen,—mouse, ring, sneeze, and all,—is found among ' non-Aryan tribes, "the inhabitants of Mardin in Mesopotamia and the Kariaines of Birmanie."[12] Well, if there was no borrowing, how did the non-Aryan peoples get the story?

M. Cosquin concludes that the theory he attacks is untenable, and determines that, "after having been invented in this place or that, which we must discover" [if we can], "the popular tales of the various European nations (to mention these alone) have spread all over the world from people to people by way of borrowing."

In arriving at this opinion, M. Cosquin admits, as is fair, that the Grimms, not having our knowledge of non-Aryan märchen (Mongol, Syrian, Arab, Kabyle, Swahili, Annamite—he might have added very many more), could not foresee all the objections to the theory of a store common to Aryans alone.

Were we constructing an elaborate treatise on märchen, it would be well in this place to discuss the Aryan theory at greater length. That theory turns on the belief that popular stories are the detritus of Aryan myths. It would be necessary then to discuss the philological hypothesis of the origin and nature of these original Aryan myths themselves; but to do so would lead us far from the study of mere popular tales.[13]

Leaving the Aryan theory, we turn to that supported by M. Cosquin himself—the theory, as he says, of Benfey.[14]

Inspired by Benfey, M. Cosquin says, "The method must be to take each type of story successively, and to follow it, if we can, from age to age, from people to people, and see where this voyage of discovery will lead us. Now, travelling thus from point to point, often by different routes, we always arrive at the same centre, namely, at India, not the India of fabulous times, but the India of actual history."

The theory of M. Cosquin is, then, that the popular stories of the world, or rather the vast majority of them, were invented in India, and that they were carried from India, during the historical period, by various routes, till they were scattered over all the races among whom they are found.

This is a venturesome theory, and is admitted, apparently, to have its exceptions. For example, we possess ancient Egyptian popular tales corresponding to those of the rest of the world, but older by far than historical India, from which, according to M. Cosquin, the stories set forth on their travels.[15]

One of these Egyptian tales, The Two Brothers, was actually written down on the existing manuscript in the time of Rameses II., some fourteen hundred years before our era, and many centuries before India had any known history. No man can tell, moreover, how long it had existed before it was copied out by the scribe Ennànà. Now this tale, according to M. Cosquin himself, has points in common with märchen from Hesse, Hungary, Russia, modern Greece, France, Norway, Lithuania, Hungary, Servia, Annam, modern India, and, we may add, with Samoyed märchen, with Hottentot märchen, and with märchen from an "aboriginal" people of India, the Santals.

We ask no more than this one märchen of ancient Egypt to upset the whole theory that India was the original home of the contes, and that from historic India they have been carried by oral transmission, and in literary vehicles, all over the world. First let us tell the story briefly, and then examine its incidents each separately, and set forth the consequences of that examination.

According to the story of The Two Brothers

"Once upon a time there were two brothers; Anapou was the elder, the younger was called Bitiou. Anapou was married, and Bitiou lived with him as his servant. When he drove the cattle to feed, he heard what they said to each other, and drove them where they told him the pasture was best. One day his brother's wife saw him carrying a very heavy burden of grain, and she fell in love with his force, and said, 'Come and lie with me, and I will make thee goodly raiment.'

"But he answered, 'Art thou not as my mother, and my brother as a father to me? Speak to me thus no more, and never will I tell any man what a word thou hast said.'

"Then she cast dust on her head, and went to her husband, saying, 'Thy brother would have lain with me; slay him or I die.'

"Then the elder brother was like a panther of the south, and he sharpened his knife, and lay in wait behind the door. And when the sun set, Bitiou came driving his cattle; but the cow that walked before them all said to him, 'There stands thine elder brother with his knife drawn to slay thee.'

"Then he saw the feet of his brother under the door, and he fled, his brother following him; and he cried to Ra, and Ra heard him, and between him and his brother made a great water flow full of crocodiles.

"Now in the morning the younger brother told the elder all the truth, and he mutilated himself, and cast it into the water, and the calmar fish devoured it. And he said, 'I go to the Valley of Acacias' (possibly a mystic name for the next world), 'and in an acacia tree I shall place my heart; and if men cut the tree, and my heart falls, thou shalt seek it for seven years, and lay it in a vessel of water. Then shall I live again and requite the evil that hath been done unto me. And the sign that evil hath befallen me shall be, when the cup of beer in thy hand is suddenly turbid and troubled.'

"Then the elder brother cast dust on his head and besmeared his face, and went home and slew his wicked wife.

"Now the younger brother dwelt in the Valley of Acacias, and all the gods came by that way, and they pitied his loneliness, and Chnum made for him a wife.[16] And the seven Hathors came and prophesied, saying, 'She shall die an ill death and a violent.' And Bitiou loved her, and told her the secret of his life, and that he should die when his heart fell from the acacia tree.

"Now, a lock of the woman's hair fell into the river, and it floated to the place where Pharaoh's washermen were at work. And the sweet lock perfumed all the raiment of Pharaoh, and the washermen knew not wherefore, and they were rebuked. Then Pharaoh's chief washerman went to the water and found the hair of the wife of Bitiou; and Pharaoh's magicians went to him and said, 'Our lord, thou must marry the woman from whose head this tress of hair hath floated hither.' And Pharaoh hearkened unto them, and he sent messengers even to the Valley of Acacias, and they came unto the wife of Bitiou. And she said, 'First you must slay my husband;' and she showed them the acacia tree, and they cut the flower that held the heart of Bitiou, and he died.

"Then it so befell that the brother of Bitiou held in his hand a cup of beer, and, lo! the beer was troubled. And he said, 'Alas, my brother!' and he sought his brother's heart, and he found it in the berry of the acacia. Then he laid it in a cup of fresh water, and Bitiou drank of it, and his heart went into his own place, and lived again.

"Then said Bitiou, 'Lo! I shall become the bull, even Apis' (Hapi); and they led him to the king, and all men rejoiced that Apis was found. But the bull went into the chamber of the king's women, and he spake to the woman that had been the wife of Bitiou. And she was afraid, and said to Pharaoh, 'Wilt thou swear to give me my heart's desire?' and he swore it with an oath. And she said, 'Slay that bull, that I may eat his liver.' Then felt Pharaoh sick for sorrow, yet for his oath's sake he let slay the bull. And there fell of his blood two quarts on either side of the son of Pharaoh, and thence grew two persea trees, great and fair, and offerings were made to the trees, as they had been gods.

"Then the wife of Pharaoh went forth in her chariot, and the tree spake to her, saying, 'I am Bitiou.' And she let cut down that tree, and a chip leaped into her mouth, and she conceived and bare a son. And that child was Bitiou; and when he came to full age and was prince of that land, he called together the councillors of the king, and accused the woman, and they slew her. And he sent for his elder brother, and made him a prince in the land of Egypt."

We now propose to show, not only that the incidents of this tale—far more ancient than historic India as it is—are common in the märchen of many countries, but that they are inextricably entangled and intertwisted with the chief plots of popular tales. There are few of the main cycles of popular tales which do not contain, as essential parts of their machinery, one or more of the ideas and situations of this legend. There is thus at least a presumption that these cycles of story may have been in existence in the reign of Rameses II., and for an indefinite period earlier; while, if they were not, and if they are made of borrowed materials, it may have been from the Egypt of an unknown antiquity, not from much later Indian sources, that they were adapted.

The incidents will now be analysed and compared with those of märchen in general.

To this end let us examine the incidents in the ancient Egyptian tale of The Two Brothers. These incidents are—

(1.) The spretæ injuria formæ of the wedded woman, who, having offered herself in vain to a man, her brother-in-law, accuses him of being her assailant. This incident, of course, occurs in Homer, in the tale of Bellerophon, before we know anything of historic India. This, moreover, seems one of the notions (M. Cosquin admits, with Benfey, that there are such notions) which are "universally human," and might be invented anywhere.

(2.) The Egyptian Hippolytus is warned of his danger by his cow, which speaks with human voice. Every one will recognise the ram which warns Phrixus and Helle in the Jason legend.[17] In the Albanian märchen,[18] a dog, not a cow nor a ram, gives warning of the danger. Animals, in short, often warn of danger by spoken messages, as the fish does in the Brahmanic deluge-myth, and the dog in a deluge-myth from North America.

(3.) The accused brother is pursued by his kinsman, and about to be slain, when Ra, at his prayer, casts between him and the avenger a stream full of crocodiles. This incident is at least not very unlike one of the most widely diffused of all incidents of story—the flight, in which the runaways cause magical rivers or lakes suddenly to cut off the pursuer. This narrative of the flight and the obstacles is found in Scotch, Gaelic, Japanese (no water-obstacle), Zulu, Russian, Samoan, and in "The Red Horse of the Delawares," a story from Dacotah, as well as in India and elsewhere.[19] The difference is, that in the Egyptian conte, as it has reached us in literary form, the fugitive appeals to Ra to help him, instead of magically making a river by throwing water or a bottle behind him, as is customary. It may be conjectured that the substitution of divine intervention in response to prayer for magical self-help is the change made by a priestly scribe in the traditional version.[20]

(4.) Next morning the brothers parley across the stream. The younger first mutilates himself (Atys), then says he is going to the vale of the acacia, according to M. Maspero, probably a name for the other world.[21] Meanwhile the younger brother will put his heart in a high acacia tree. If the tree is cut down, the elder brother must search for the heart, and place it in a jar of water, when the younger brother will revive. Here we have the idea which recurs in the Samoyed märchen, where the men lay aside their hearts, in which are their separable lives. As Mr. Ralston says,[22] "This heart-breaking episode occurs in the tales of many lands." In the Russian the story is Koschchei the deathless, whose "death" (or life) lies in an egg, in a duck, on a log, in the ice.[23] As Mr. Ralston well remarks, a very singular parallel to the revival of the Egyptian brother's heart in water is the Hottentot tale of a girl eaten by a lion. Her heart is extracted from the lion, is placed in a calabash of milk, and the girl comes to life again.[24]

(5.) The younger brother gives the elder a sign magical, whereby he shall know how it fares with the heart. When a cup of beer suddenly grows turbid, then evil has befallen the heart. This is merely one of the old sympathetic signs of story—the opal that darkens; the comb of Lemminkainen in the Kalewala, that drops blood when its owner is in danger; the stick that the hero erects as he leaves home, and which will fall when he is imperilled. In Australia the natives practise this magic with a stick, round which they bind the hair of the distant person about whose condition they want to be informed.[25] This incident, turning on the belief in sympathies, might perhaps be regarded as "universally human" and capable of being invented anywhere.

M. Cosquin has found in France the trait of the blood that boils in the glass when the person concerned is in danger.

(6.) The elder brother goes home and kills his wife. The gods pity the younger Bitiou in the Valley of Acacias, and make him a wife.

(7.) The three Hathors come to her creation, and prophesy for her a violent death. For this incident compare Perrault's The Sleeping Beauty and Maury's work on Les Fées. The spiritual midwives and prophetesses at the hour of birth are familiar in märchen as Fairies, and Fates, and Mæræ.

(8.) The river carries a tress of the hair of Bitiou's wife to the feet of Pharaoh's washermen; the scent perfumes all the king's linen. Pharaoh falls in love with the woman from whose locks this tress has come. For this incident compare Cinderella. In Santal and Indian märchen a tress of hair takes the place of the glass-slipper, and the amorous prince or princess will only marry the person from whose head the lock has come. Here M. Cosquin himself gives Siamese, Mongol, Bengali (LaL Behar Day, p. 86), and other examples of the lock of hair doing duty for the slipper with which the lover is smitten, and by which he recognises his true love.

(9.) The wife of Bitiou reveals the secret of his heart. The people of Pharaoh cut down the acacia tree.

(10.) His brother reads in the turbid beer the death of Bitiou. He discovers the heart and life in a berry of the acacia.

It is superfluous to give modern parallels to the various transformations of the life of Bitiou. He becomes an Apis bull, and his faithless wife desires his death, and wishes to eat his liver, but his life goes on in other forms. This is merely the familiar situation of the ass in Peau d'Ane (the ass who clearly, before Perrault's time, had been human).

Demandez lui la peau de ce rare animal!

In most traditional versions of Cinderella will be found examples of the beast, once human, slain by an enemy, yet potent after death. This beast takes the part given by Perrault to the fairy godmother. The idea is also familiar in Grimm's Machandelboom (47), and was found by Casalis among the Bechuanas.

(11.) The wicked wife obtains the bull Apis's death by virtue of a hasty oath of Pharaoh's (Jephtha, Herodias).

(12.) The blood of the bull grows into two persea trees.

Here M. Cosquin himself supplies parallels of blood turning into trees from Hesse (Wolf, p. 394) and from Russian. We may add the ancient Lydian myth. When the gods slew Agdistis, a drop of his blood became an almond tree, the fruit of which made women pregnant.[26]

(13.) The persea tree is also cut down by the wicked wife of Bitiou. A chip from its boughs is swallowed by the wicked wife, who conceives, like Margata in the Kalewala, and bears a son.

The story of Agdistis, just quoted, is in point, but the topic is of enormous range, and the curious may consult Le Fils de Vierge by M. H. De Charencey. Compare also Surya Bay in Old Deccan Days (6). The final resurrection of Surya Bay is exactly like that in the Hottentot tale already quoted. Surya is drowned by a jealous rival, becomes a golden flower, is burned, becomes a mango; one of the fruits falls into a calabash of milk, and out of the calabash, like the Hottentot girl, comes Surya!

(14.) The son of tliepersea tree was Bitiou, born of his own faithless wife; and when he grew up he had her put to death.

Even a hasty examination of these incidents from old Egypt proves that before India was heard of in history the people of the Pharaohs possessed a large store of incidents perfectly familiar in modern märchen. Now, if one single Egyptian tale yields this rich supply, it is an obvious presumption that the collection of an Egyptian Grimm might, and probably would, have furnished us with the majority of the situations common in popular tales. M. Cosquin himself remarks that these ideas cannot be invented more than once (I. lxvii.) The other Egyptian contes, as that of Le Prince Prédestiné (twentieth dynasty), and the noted Master Thief of Herodotus (ii. 121), are merely familiar märchen of the common type, and have numerous well-known analogues.

From all these facts M. Cosquin draws no certain conclusions. He asks, Did Egypt borrow these tales from India, or India from Egypt? And were there Aryans in India in the time of Rameses II.?

These questions are beyond conjecture. We know nothing of Egyptian relations with prehistoric India. We know not how many æons the tale of The Two Brothers may have existed in Egypt before Ennànà, the head librarian, wrote it out for Pharaoh's treasurer, Qagabou.

What we do know is, that if we find a large share of the whole stock of incident of popular tale fully developed in one single story long before India was historic, it is perfectly vain to argue that all stories were imported from historic India. It is impossible to maintain that the single centre whence the stories spread was not the India of fable, but the India of history, when we discover such abundance of story material in Egypt before, as far as is known, India had even become the India of fable.

The topic is altogether too obscure for satisfactory argument. Certainly the märchen were at home in Egypt before we have even reason to believe that Egypt and India were conscious of each other's existence. The antiquity of märchen by the Nile-side touches geological time, if we agree with M. Maspero that Bitiou is a form of Osiris, that is, that the Osiris myth may have been developed out of the Bitiou märchen.[27] The Osiris myth is as old as the Egypt we know, and the story of Bitiou may be either the detritus or the germ of the myth. This gives it a dateless antiquity; and with this märchen the kindred and allied märchen establish a claim to enormous age. But it is quite impossible to say when these tales were first invented. We cannot argue that the cradle of a story is the place where it first received literary form. We know not whence the Egyptians came to Nile-side; we know not whether they brought the story with them, or found it among some nameless earlier people, fugitives from Kôr, perhaps, or anywhere else. We know not whether the remote ancestors of modern peoples, African, or European, or Asiatic, who now possess forms of the tale, borrowed it from a people more ancient than Egypt, or from Egypt herself. These questions are at present insoluble. We only know for certain that, when we find anywhere any one of the numerous incidents of the story of The Two Brothers, we can be certain that their original home was not historic India. There is also the presumption that, if we knew more of the tales of ancient Egypt, we could as definitely refuse to regard historic India as the cradle of many other märchen.

Thus, in opposition to the hypothesis of borrowing from India, we reach some distinct and assured, though negative, truths.

1. So far as the ideas in The Two Brothers are representative of märchen (and these ideas are inextricably interwoven with some of the most typical legends), historic India is certainly and demonstrably not the cradle of popular tales. These are found far earlier already in the written literature of Egypt.

2. As far as these ideas are representative of märchen, there is absolutely no evidence to show that märchen spring from India, whether historical or prehistoric; nor is any connection proved between ancient Egypt and prehistoric India.

3. As far as märchen are represented by the ideas in The Two Brothers and the Predestined Prince, there is absolutely no evidence to show in what region or where they were originally invented.

The Bellerophon story rests on a donnée in The Two Brothers; the Flight rests on another; Cinderella reposes on a third; the giant with no heart in his body depends on a fourth; the Milk-White Dove on the same; and these incidents occur in Hottentot, Bechuana, Samoyed, Samoan, as well as in Greek, Scotch, German, Gaelic. Now, as all these incidents existed in Egyptian märchen fourteen hundred years before Christ, they may have been dispersed without Indian intervention. One of the white raiders from the Northern Sea may have been made captive, like the pseud-Odysseus, in Egypt; may have heard the tales; may have been ransomed, and carried the story to Greece or Libya, whence a Greek got it. Southwards it may have passed up the Nile to the Great Lakes, and down the Conogo and Zambesi, and southward ever with the hordes of T'Chaka's ancestors. All these processes are possible and even probable, but absolutely nothing is known for certain on the subject. It is only as manifest as facts can be that all this might have occurred if the Indian peninsula did not exist.

Another objection to the hypothesis of distribution from historic India is the existence of sagas or epic legends corresponding to märchen in pre-Homeric Greece. The story of Jason, for example, is in its essential features, perhaps, the most widely diffused of all.[28] The story of the return of the husband, and of his difficult recognition by his wife, the central idea of the Odyssey, is of wide distribution, and the Odyssey (as Fénélon makes the ghost of Achilles tell Homer in Hades) is un amas de contes de vieilles. The Cyclops, the Siren, Scylla, and the rest,[29] these tales did not reach Greece from historic India at least, and we have no reason for supposing that India before the dawn of history was their source.

The reasons for which India has been regarded as a great centre and fountain-head of popular stories are, on the other hand, excellent, if the theory is sufficiently limited. The cause is vera causa. Märchen certainly did set out from mediæval India, and reached mediæval Europe and Asia in abundance. Not to speak of oral communications in the great movements, missions, and migrations, Tartar, crusading, commercial, and Buddhistic—in all of which there must have been "swopping of stories"—it is certain that Western literature was actually invaded by the contes which had won a way into the literature of India.[30] These are facts beyond doubt, but these facts must not be made the basis of too wide an inference. Though so many stories have demonstrably been borrowed from India in the historical period, it is no less certain that many existed in Europe before their introduction. Again, as has been ably argued by a writer in the Athenæum (April 23, 1887), the literary versions of the tales probably had but a limited influence on the popular narrators, the village gossips and grandmothers. Thus no collection of published tales has ever been more popular than that of Charles Perrault, which for many years has been published not only in cheap books, but in cheaper broadsheets. Yet M. Sébillot and other French collectors gather from the lips of peasants versions of Cinderella, for example, quite unaffected by Perrault's version, and rich in archaic features, such as the presence of a miracle-working beast instead of a fairy godmother. That detail is found in Kaffir, and Santhal, and Finnish, as well as in Celtic, and Portuguese, and Scottish variants, and has been preserved in popular French traditions, despite the influence of Perrault. In the same way, M. Carnoy finds only the faintest traces of the influence of a collection so popular as the Arabian Nights. The peasantry regard tales which they read in books as quite apart from their inherited store of legend.[31]

If printed literature has still so little power over popular tradition, the manuscript literature of the Middle Ages must have had much less, though sometimes contes from India were used as parables by preachers. Thus we must beware of over-estimating the effect of importations from India, even where it distinctly existed. Even the versions that were brought in the Middle Ages by oral tradition must have encountered versions long settled in Europe—versions which may have been current before any scribe of Egypt perpetuated a legend on papyrus.

Once more, the Indian theory has to account for the presence of tales in Africa and America among populations which are not known to have had any contact with India at all. Where such examples are urged, it is usual to say that the stories either do not really resemble our märchen, or are quite recent importations by Europeans, Dutch, French, English, and others.[32] Here we are on ground where proof is difficult, if not impossible. Assuredly French influence declares itself in certain narratives collected from the native tribes of North America. On the other hand, when the märchen is interwoven with the national traditions and poetry of a remote people, and with the myths by which they account to themselves for the natural features of their own country, the hypothesis of recent borrowing from Europeans appears insufficient. A striking example is the song of Siati (a form of the Jason myth) among the people of Samoa.[33] Even more remarkable is the presence of a crowd of familiar märchen in the national traditions of the Huarochiri, a pre-Inca civilised race of Southern Peru. These were published, or at least collected and written down, by Francisco de Avila, a Spanish priest, about 1608. He remarks that "these traditions are deeply rooted in the hearts of the people of this province."[34] These traditions refer to certain prehistoric works of engineering or accidents of soil, whereby the country was drained. The Huarochiris explained them by a series of märchen about Huthiacuri, Pariaca (culture-heroes), and about friendly animals which aided them in the familiar way. In the same manner exactly the people of the Marais of Poitou have to account for the drainage of the country, a work of the twelfth century. They attribute the old works to the local hero, Gargantua, who "drank up all the water."[35] No one supposes that this legend is borrowed from Rabelais, and it seems even more improbable that the Huarochiris hastily borrowed märchen from the Spaniards, and converted them before 1600 into national myths.

We have few opportunities of finding examples of remote American märchen recorded so early as this, and generally the hypothesis of recent borrowing from Europeans, or from Negroes influenced by Europeans, is at least possible, and it would be hard to prove a negative. But the case of the Huarochiri throws doubt on the hypothesis of recent borrowing as the invariable cause of the diffusion of märchen in places beyond the reach of historic India.

The only way (outside of direct evidence) to prove borrowing would be to show that ideas and customs peculiarly Indian (for example) occur in the märchen of people destitute of these ideas. But it would be hard to ask believers in the Indian theory to exhibit such survivals. In the first place, if contes have been borrowed, it seems that a new "local colour" was given to them almost at the moment of transference. The Zulu and Kaffir märchen are steeped in Zulu and Kaffir colour, and the life they describe is rich in examples of rather peculiar native rites and ceremonies, seldom if ever essential to the conduct of the tale. Thus, if stories are "adapted" (like French plays) in the moment of borrowing, it will be cruel to ask supporters of the Indian theory for traces of Indian traits and ideas in European märchen. Again, apart from special yet non-essential matters of etiquette (such as the ceremonies with which certain kinsfolk are treated, or the initiation of girls at the marriageable age), the ideas and customs found in märchen are practically universal. As has been shown, the supernatural stuff—metamorphosis, equality of man, beasts, and things, magic, and the like—is universal. Thus little remains that could be fixed on as especially the custom or idea of any one given people. For instance, in certain variants of Puss in Boots, Swahili, Avar, Neapolitan, the beast-hero makes it a great point that, when he dies, he is to be honourably buried. Now what peoples give beasts honourable burial? We know the cases of ancient Egyptians, Samoans, Arabs, and Athenians (in the case, at least, of the wolf), and probably there are many more. Thus even so peculiar an idea or incident as this cannot be proved to belong to a definite region, or to come from any one original centre.[36]

By the very nature of the case, therefore, it is difficult for M. Cosquin and other supporters of the Indian theory to prove the existence of Indian ideas in European märchen. Nor do they establish this point. They urge that charity to beasts and the gratitude of beasts, as contrasted with human lack of gratitude, are Indian, and perhaps Buddhist ideas. Thus the Buddha gave his own living body to a famished tigress. But so, according to Garcilasso, were the subjects of the Incas wont to do, and they were not Buddhists. The beasts in märchen, again, are just as often, or even more frequently, helpful to men without any motive of gratitude; nor would it be fair to argue that the notion of gratitude has dropped out, because we find friendly beasts all the world over, totems and manitous, who have never been benefited by man. The favours are all on the side of the totems. It is needless to adduce again the evidence on this topic. M. Cosquin adds that the belief in the equality and interchangeability of attributes and aspect between man and beast is "une idée bien indienne," and derived from the doctrine of metempsychosis, "qui efface la distinction entre l'homme et l'animal, et qui en tout vivant voit un frère." But it has been demonstrated that this belief in the equality and kinship not only of all animate, but all inanimate nature, is the very basis of Australian, Zuni, and all other philosophies of the backward races. No idea can be less peculiar to India; it is universal. Once more, the belief that shape-shifting (metamorphosis) can be achieved by skin-shifting, by donning or doffing the hide of a beast, is no more "peculiarly Indian" than the other conceptions. Benfey, to be sure, laid stress on this point;[37] but it is easy to produce examples of skin-shifting and consequent metamorphosis from Roman, North American, Old Scandinavian, Thlinkeet, Slav, and Vogul ritual and myths.[38] There remains only a trace of polygamy in European märchen to speak of specially Indian influence.[39] But polygamy is not peculiar to India, nor is monogamy a recent institution in Europe.

Thus each "peculiarly Indian" idea supposed to be found in märchen proves to be practically universal. So the whole Indian hypothesis is attacked on every side. Contes are far older than historic India. Nothing raises even a presumption that they first arose in prehistoric India. They are found in places where they could hardly have travelled from historic India. Their ideas are not peculiarly Indian, and though many reached Europe and Asia in literary form derived from India during the Middle Ages, and were even used as parables in sermons, yet the majority of European folk-tales have few traces of Indian influence. Some examples of this influence, as when the "framework" of an Oriental collection has acquired popular circulation, will be found in Professor Crane's interesting book, Italian Popular Tales pp. 168, 359. But to admit this is very different from asserting that German Hausmärchen are all derived from "Indian and Arabian originals, with necessary changes of costume and manners," which is, apparently, the opinion of some students.

What remains to do is to confess ignorance of the original centre of the märchen, and inability to decide dogmatically which stories must have been invented only once for all, and which may have come together by the mere blending of the universal elements of imagination. It is only certain that no limit can be put to a story's power of flight per ora virum. It may wander wherever merchants wander, wherever captives are dragged, wherever slaves are sold, wherever the custom of exogamy commands the choice of alien wives. Thus the story flits through the whole race and over the whole world. Wherever human communication is or has been possible, there the story may go, and the space of time during which the courses of the sea and the paths of the land have been open to story is dateless and unknown. Here the story may dwindle to a fireside tale; there it may become an epic in the mouth of Homer or a novel in the hands of Madame D'Aulnoy or Miss Thackeray. The savage makes the characters beasts or birds; the epic poet or saga-man made them heroic kings, or lovely, baleful sorceresses, daughters of the Sun; the French Countess makes them princesses and countesses. Like its own heroes, the popular story can assume every shape; like some of them, it has drunk the waters of immortality.[40]

Notes[edit]

  1. Nature-Myths, vol. i. p. 130. The story is "Asterinos und Pulja" in Von Hahn's Griech. und Alban. Märchen. Compare Samojedische Märchen, Castren, Vorles. über die Alt. Volk, p. 164; Callaway, Uzembeni.
  2. Mrs. Hunt's translation, London, 1884.
  3. "The Relations of Ssidi Kür," in Bergmann's Nomadische Streifereien, vol. i.
  4. See Custom and Myth, "The Art of Savages," p. 288.
  5. Popular Tales from the Norse, 1859, pp. liv.–lv.
  6. See our Introduction to Mrs. Hunt's translation of Grimms' Household Tales.
  7. Contes Populaire de Lorraine, Paris, 1886, pp. i., xv.
  8. Grieschische und Albanesische Märchen, 1864.
  9. Vol. ii. p. 226.
  10. Cox, Mythol. of Aryan Nations, i. 109.
  11. Max Müller, Chips, ii. 216.
  12. Cosquin, I, xi., xii., with his authorities in note I.
  13. It has already been attemped in our Custom and Myth ; Introduction to Mrs. Hunt's Grimm; La Mythologie, and elsewhere.
  14. For M. Benfey's notions, see Bulletin de l'Académie de Saint Petersbourg, September, 4–16, 1859, and Pantschatantra, Leipzig, 1859.
  15. See M. Maspero's collection, Contes Populaires de l'Egypte Ancienne, Paris, 1882.
  16. Chnum is the artificer among the gods.
  17. The authority cited by the scholiast (Apoll. Rhod., Argon., i. 256) is Hecatæus. Scholiast on Iliad, vii. 86, quotes Philostephanus.
  18. Von Hahn, i. 65.
  19. See Folk-Lore Journal, April 1886, review of Clouston's Popular Stories, for examples of the magic used in the flight.
  20. Maspero, Contes, p. 13, note i.
  21. Russian Folk-Tales, 109.
  22. Custom and Myth, London, 1884, pp. 99–101.
  23. In Norse, Asbjornsen and Moe, 36; Dasent, 9, Gaelic, Campbell, i. 4, p. 81. Indian, "Punchkin," Old Deccan Days, pp. 13–16. Samoyed, Castren, Ethnol. Vorles. über die Altaischen Völker., p. 174.
  24. Bleek, Reynard the Fox in South Africa, p. 57.
  25. Dawson, Australian Aborigines, p. 36, 1881. The stick used is the "throwing stick" wherewith the spear is hurled.
  26. Pausanias, vii. 17.
  27. Maspero, op. cit., p. 17, note 1.
  28. Custom and Myth, "A Far-Travelled Tale."
  29. Gerland, Alt Griechische Märchen in der Odyssee.
  30. Cosquin, op. cit., I. xv., xxiv,; Max Müller, "The Migrations of Fables," Selected Essays, vol. ii., Appendix; Benfey, Pantschatantra; Comparetti, Introduction to Book of Sindibad, English translation of the Folk-Lore Society.
  31. Sébillot's popular Cendrillon is Le Taureau Bleu in Contes de la Haute Bretagne. See also M. Carnoy 's Contes Français, 1885, p. 9.
  32. Cosquin, op. cit., 1, xix.
  33. Turner's Samoa, p. 102.
  34. Rites of the Incas. Hakluyt Society. The third document in the book. The märchen have been examined by me in The Marriage of Cupid and Psyche, p. lxxii.
  35. Revue des Traditions Populaires, April 25, 1887, p. 186.
  36. See Deulin, Contes de ma Mère l'Oye, and Reinhold Köhler in Gonzenbach's Sicilianische Märchen, No. 65.
  37. Pantschatantra, i. 265.
  38. Marriage of Cupid and Psyche, pp. lx., lxiv., where examples and authorities are given.
  39. Cosquin, op. cit., i. xxx.
  40. A curious essay by Mr. H. E. Warner, on "The Magical Flight," urges that there is no plot, but only a fortuitous congeries of story-atoms (Scribner's Magazine, June 1887). There is a good deal to be said, in this case, for Mr. Warner's conclusions.