Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review Volumes 32 and 33.djvu/209

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197
Provenience of Certain Negro Folk-Tales.

ready," reports the younger brother. Rombao goes to the assemblage and challenges the captain to produce the tongue of the whale. "The whale has not a tongue — it is rotten," declare the soldiers. Whereupon Rombao produces the tongue which he has salted, and the chief gives him his daughter, killing the captain and the soldiers.[1]

In America "Missing Tongues" is found among both Indians[2] and Negroes. Two Negro variants have been recorded in the United States, the Cape Verde Islands tale already given and a tale I heard in one of the Sea Islands of the Carolina coast; from the West Indies there are several variants, three from Jamaica, two from Antigua and one from the Bahamas.

The Carolinian version has been spliced into the tale of Escape Up the Tree, another tale of Hispanic provenience, and in the splicing the pattern has become considerably obscured.—John take his dawg an' gone. Walk twenty mile. Meet up wid a sign: any man dat enter de city an' kill de mighty beas' would marry de king daughter. . . . De beas' had been done ten or twelve mans cou'tin' de king daughter. So John an' his dawg enter into de city an' make right fo' de king house. An' when John get up on de step, put his firs' step, de beas' caught his laig. John cry, "Cut-His-T'roat, cut his t'roat!" De dawg cut his t'roat. John say, "Suck-his-Blood, suck his blood!" De dawg suck his blood. John now wen' into de house. Saw all de mans in de house. Had no perfection, glad when John come an' kill de beas'. John didn' know de king daughter, but de king daughter walk right to John, hug him an' kiss him, said, "Dis my husban'." Said, "Now, befo' we married, you got a sister, go get yer sister. Tell

  1. Macdonald, Duff, Africana, ii. 341-344, London, Edinburgh, Aberdeen, 1882.
  2. For its distribution among Indians, see Journal American Folk-Lore, xxv. 258, n. 4.