Chapter 3: Legends

Introduction

Lao people, like those in other parts of the world, regard legends as true accounts that can be used to explain how things happen the way they do in terms of natural pheonomena, names of places, animals, and trees. Legends have an important place in Lao culture as they can be historical accounts.   There are several stories in this group of the so called historical accounts or phuen sueb, according to Jaruwan Thammawat. In this course, this set of legends are classed as "historical chronicles" and will be discussed separately.

The following stories are examples mostly of legends that Lao people tell to explain natural phenomena. Most stories presented here are from "Laolum" or the lowland Lao people. Read the following Lao legends and see what each story attempts to explain. Bachieng and Malong (The Love Story of Bachieng and Malong), Phu Phra Phu Nang (The Prince and Princess Mountains), The Black Smith, Crow and Peacock, Dog and Pig, Chakcan (The Cicadas), Maeng Nguan (The Singing Cricket), and The Dog's Urinating Habit.

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Bachieng and Malong

        Once upon a time in Champanakhon there was a king who had a beautiful daughter called Malong.  Near the big city where they lived there were two tribes. One lived in the hills called the "Laothoeng" tribe, and one lived in the lowlands, the "Laolum" tribe.

     When the king's daughter was of a marrigable age, two young men fell in love with her.   Bachieng was the head of the Laothoeng poeple.   He was very rich, but he was not good looking.  Champasak was one of the Laolum people.  He was very poor, but he was handsome, kind, and brave.   More important, Princess Malong loved him.   However, the queen wanted her daughter to marry the rich man, Bachieng.  So she began to make plans for the wedding.   Champasak was deeply in love with Malong, and he was heart-broken when he heard that she was going to marry Bachieng.  So he set off, travelling southwards, wrapped up in his grief and thinking about Malong as he went along.  Meanwhile, the day for the wedding was drawing near and Malong was also heart-broken.  She tried to find a way to escape the arranged marriage to the man whom she did not love.

        Bachieng's house was on the left bank of the Mekong.  It took a day and a night's journey to get to Malong's royal palace.   There was great rejoicing there among Bachieng's family because he was going to marry a rich and beautiful woman. Bachieng was saying to himself:

 "How well I have done for myself. I will certainly become king one day."

   Two days before the wedding, the groom's party set out on foot for the bride's palace, where final preparations were being made for a magnificent wedding feast. Very early in the morning, on the day that the wedding was due to take place, while it was still dark, a little door at the back of the palace was opened silently and a small figure appeared.   It was Malong.  She hurried southwards, hoping to catch up with Champasak and to escape from Bachieng forever.

        When Bachieng and his party arrived at the palace, Malong was nowhere to be found, and when Bachieng discovered that she had run away from him to be with Champasak, he was overcome with sorrow.  He decided to take his own life. At that place where he died there is a fine mountain.  To this day, it is still called Bachieng Mountain in honour of the man who truly loved Malong and who lost her to the handsome Champasak.

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Phu Phra Phu Nang (Prince Mountain and Princess Mountain)

      On the right bank of the Mekong River near Siangman Village, opposite to Luang Phrabang, there are two mountains called "Phu Phra or Prince Mountain " and   "Phu Nang or Princess Mountain."  These two mountains look like two human beings lying on their backs.

      The story about these two mountains has been passed down from one generation to the next, right down to the present day.

       Once upon a time there was a very poor wood-cutter who had a wife and twelve daughters.  Because they were so poor they took their children to the forest one day and abandoned them there.  The girls wandered around the forest and soon they met an ogress who had a daughter called "Kang Hi."  The ogress took them to her home and raised them with her own daughter

        They stayed with the ogress until they were grown up.  One day, the girls decided to escape.  The ogress went out searching for them.  When she was about to catch them, they hid in the mouth of the King of Bulls. The ogress gave up the search and returned home.  The twelve girls continued their journey.  When they arrived at a city, the king saw them and fell in love with them.  He married all of them.

        When the ogress found out that the girls had married the king, she was very angry so she set out for her revenge.   She transformed herself into a beautiful girl and went to see the king.  The king fell in love with her and made her his queen.

        Not long after that she pretended to be ill.   She would not eat anything, so she grew pale and thin.  Then she asked the king to consult an astrology to find out about her illness.  Then she transformed herself into an astrology, waiting for the king's men to come to consult her.  She said that the twelve sisters were the cause of her illness. The king must have the eyes of the twelve sisters taken out for a sacrifice and send them away.  Otherwise, she would die.   The king agreed.  After having the eyes of the twelve sisters, the ogress sent them to her daughter, Kanghi, to keep.

        At that time, the king's twelve wives were pregnant.  The were locked up in a cave with no food.   They became so hungry that they ate each baby after any sister had delivered a baby.  The younger sister was fortunate to have only one eye taken out.  She could not eat any of the baby.  She kept her portion to give to her sisters, telling them it was her child who had died in her womb.  Her son was the only baby that survived.

        Later, a wild rooster came to live with them and gave them some rice to eat so all of them were alive.  When the son of the twelfth daughter grew up, she told her sisters that her child was alive.  One day the boy left his mother and aunts, taking the wild rooster into the nearby village and joined the cockfighting.   At sunset, the village children gave him food which he brought to his mother and aunts.

        Shortly after that the boy went to take part in some games in the king's palace. The boy was a  very good player, so the king asked to see him. When the king asked him about his family, the boy said he was the son of the youngest of the twelve sisters. The king knew that they boy was his own son.  So, he took the boy to live in  the palace, giving him the name "Phutthasen."   Every day the little boy would sneak out food to give to his mother and aunts.

        When the ogress found out who the boy really was, she decided to kill him. She pretended to be ill again.  One day she said to the king:  "The only medicine that can cure me is in my own city, and the only person who can go and fetch the medicine for me is Phutthasen."  And so the king sent him to get the medicine, as the queen wished. Phutthasen asked for a magic flying good horse for the journey.   Before he set out, the ogress gave him a letter and said to him: " Take this letter to my daughter, Kang Hi and she will give you many things."

       Phutthasen tied the letter to his horse's neck and set out on his journey.  After a while he grew tired so he stopped for a rest near an ascetic's hut.  After he and his horse fell fast asleep, the ascetic came over and saw the letter.  He read the message: " Kang Hi, my daughter, when this young man comes to you,  please capture him and kill him at once. He is our enemy."

        The ascetic felt sorry for the young man so he re-wrote the letter:  "This young man is our king's son, and he is to become your husband.  Please welcome him as such."

        When the young man came to Kang Hi, she opened the letter and read it.  She was very pleased and was delighted to make him her husband because he was very handsome.

        Later, she showed him around the palace grounds, pointing out many wondrous things like the magic lemons, the palace where the twelve ladies' eyes were kept, and where her mother's heart was kept too.  Phutthasen was very pleased to see all of these things, and started  looking for a way to escape and to bring back the eyes to his mother and his aunts.

        One day he asked her to arrange a big banquet and  to invite all of her men to come and enjoy it. He himself gave his wife and her men a lot of drink and soon they got drunk and fell asleep. When they were all sleeping soundly, he went to collect the eyes, the ogress's heart, the magic lemons, and other magic things.  Then, he got on his horse and rode away into the night. When Kang Hi and her men awoke and saw that her husband was missing, they set out in search of him.  Phouthasen had expected that, so he started to throw some of the magic things in her path.  He threw down a magic potion that created a barrier of thorny bamboo forest.

        Eventually she and her men made their way through it and set continued to follow Phutthasen.  Then he threw down another magic potion that brought about a turbulent river full of huge waves.  It was impossible for Kang Hi to cross the river.   She cried out to him, begging him to come back to her.  But he would not come back, and after a while Kang Hi gave up, and led her men back home.  She was so broken-hearted at losing Phutthasen that she became very ill and could neither eat nor sleep.  In a very short time she died.  Before she died, she put a curse on Phutthasen, saying :

        " May you die for love, just as I have done. "

        Meanwhile, Phutthasen returned to his home city; he gave the eyes back to his mother and his aunts.  Then he squeezed the juice of the magic lemons into their eyes and every one's sight was restored.  His mother and aunts were, of course, delighted to be able to see again.

        Then Phutthasen set off to his father's palace. The wicked ogress saw him and became angry and amazed, because she had given Kang Hi orders to kill him.   How could he have come back again?  She became so furious that she forgot to maintain her identity as a beautiful young princess.    She was transformed into an ogress once more.  She charged at Phutthasen in her rage, hoping to kill him, but Phutthasen pierced her heart with his sword and she dropped down dead immediately. After that, Phutthasen went to bring his mother and his aunts to live in the palace again.  Then, he said goodbye to his mother, his father, and his aunts, and went back to the home of Kang Hi, his wife.

        To his sorrow, Putthasen found on his arrival that his wife had already died.  He suddenly felt so overwhelmed by his love for her that he could no longer stand.   He collapsed and died with his head on her feet.

        Now the gods in the heavens thought this was not as it should be,  because in the future, women, learning from Kang Hi's story, would not trust men at all.  Therefore  the gods came down and changed the position of Phutthasen's body to lie on his back.

        The ancient people of  Laos have told this story and it has been handed down from generation to generation.  It is said that the bodies of Kang Hi and Phutthasen became "Phu Phra Phu Nang which means Prince Mountain and Princess Mountain" and these mountains can still be seen to this very day. They are just like two human beings lying their backs.

 

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The Blacksmith

A blacksmith was pounding iron to make knives in front of a hot fire,

"peng, peng, peng,"

complaining,  "I am so unhappy . . .  I don't want to be a blacksmith anymore!"

Then he looked up and saw a large stone standing on the mountain.

And the breeze blew it all the time, "wee, wee, wee". . .

"If I could be that stone, I would be so happy."

Suddenly a devata (devine being) appeared and said,

"If he wants that, he will have that."

The devata  recited words of incantation.

"Ohm piang!"

The blacksmith was turned into a stone standing on the mountain,

and the wind blew all around him "wee wee wee". . .

"I am so happy now," he thought.

He was so happy until . . .

"Ouch! Ouch! What is this?

He looked around and saw a stone carver hitting him with a chisel and a hammer.    He complained again,

"Why are you doing this to me?  I am so unhappy . . . "

The blacksmith looked at the stone carver and said,

"If I could be that stone carver, I would be so happy."

Suddenly a devata appeared and said,

"If he wants that, he will have that."

The devata recited words of incantation . . .    "Ohm piang!"

The blacksmith was turned into a stone carver

and the wind blew all around him "wee wee wee". . .

"I am so happy," he thought.

He was so happy looking for a stone to carve.

But he could not find the right stone to carve.

So he complained again,

"This one is too big! This one is too small!"

The sun was shining so brightly,

and the blacksmith who was the stone carver felt so tired.

So, he cried out,

"I am so unhappy . . . I don't want to be a stone carver anymore."

Then he looked at the sun and said,

"If I could be the sun, I would be so happy."

Suddenly a devata appeared and said,

"If he wants that, he will have that."

The devata recited words of incantation . . .

"Ohm piang!"

The blacksmith was turned into the sun.

He was so happy shining early in the morning

and the wind blew all around him "wee wee wee" . . .

"I am so happy," he thought.

But when it got later, he began to feel hotter and hotter.

So, he shouted,

"I am so unhappy . . . I don't want to be the sun anymore."

Then he looked across the sky and saw the moon.

"If I could be the moon, I would be so happy," said he.

Suddenly a devata appeared and said,

"If he wants that, he will have that.."

The devata recited words of incantation . . .

"Ohm piang!"

The blacksmith was turned into the moon .

He was so happy appearing in the sky early that night

and the wind blew "wee wee wee" . . .

"I am so happy," he thought.

But when it got later, and later, he began to feel so cold.

He shouted,

"I am so unhappy . . . I don't want to be the moon anymore."

The blacksmith who was the moon thought about how hot it was

when he was the blacksmith.

And he said, "If I could be the blacksmith I was, I would be so happy."

Suddenly a devata appeared and said,

"If he wants that, he will have that."

The devata recited words of incantation,

"Ohm piang!"

The blacksmith who was the moon was turned into the blacksmith he was.

But now he was not pounding iron on earth!

He was pounding iron in the moon.

And it was so cold there.   The blacksmith got so cold

that he had to pound iron in front of a hot fire everyday.

If you look up on the night of full moon,

you will see the blacksmith, pounding in the moon, "peng peng peng" . . .

Well at least he is not hot any more!

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Crow and Peacock

Listen to the story: Lao English

Retold by Dr. Wajuppa Tossa and Prasong Saihong

Once, long ago, the crow and the peacock were good friends.

Everyday they would go out together to work or to play.

Now in those days the crow and the peacock both had plain white feathers.

One day they were playing in a field of brightly colored flowers.

"Look, friend Peacock.

Don't you wish we wore bright colors like those flowers?"

"I think that would be wonderful, friend Crow.

I am tired of these plain white feathers."

Then crow had an idea.

"Why don't we PAINT ourselves?

I can paint your feathers and you can paint mine!"

The peacock agreed.

So the next day Crow began to paint Peacock's feathers.

He used the most beautiful colors.

He painted peacock's breast and head a magnificent blue.

On peacock's tail feathers he drew elaborate designs.

He created large rainbow spots like brilliant eyes on peacock's tail.

Crow spent many hours painting his friend.

When he was finished Peacock spread his tail feathers

and began to strut around. He wanted to go and show everyone

his beautiful feathers.

"Now it is your turn to paint me," said Crow.

But Peacock did not want to waste time drawing designs on Crow.

He simply took a pot of black ink and poured it over crow's head.

"There you are. That should do."

And the proud Peacock strutted off to show his feathers to the world.

So today the crow is all plain.

And even though Peacock IS beautiful,

It is clear that he is too proud for his own good.

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Dog and Pig

Once a farmer raised a pig and a dog to help him work.

One day he had to go to town, so he told his pig and dog:

"Now, I have to go to town. You two must go to plough the field and try to finish before I come back home."

Pig and Dog went to the field. Once they arrived at the field, the pig said:

"This is a big field. Why don't I do half and you do the other half?   

Pig why don't you go first. When you finish, let me know."

Dog then took a nap and Pig began ploughing the field diligently.

"Oint, oint, oint" . . .

When he finished his half, he called out to Dog:

"Dog, I've finished my half.  It's your turn now."

"Oh, Pig, can you go on ploughing the field? I don't feel well.  I have a headache."

Dog went on sleeping and Pig continued ploughing the field

until he almost finished.  Then he went to Dog again.

"Dog, I almost finished your half.  How are you feeling?"

"Oh, Pig, can you go on ploughing the field? I don't feel well.  I have a stomachache."

Dog went on sleeping and Pig continued ploughing the field

until he finished ploughing the entire field.   Then he went to Dog again.

"Dog, I have finished everything.  How are you feeling?"

"Finished?  I feel much better now.   How about you?"

"I feel exhausted," said Pig.

"Now why don't you take your nap?  I will do a little exercise."

So, the pig took a nap and the dog ran around all over the field until sunset.

"Pig, wake up and let's go home before dark."

When they got home, the farmer asked: "Have you finished ploughing the field?"

"Yes," the pig said.

"I did all the work, Father. I feel ache and pain all over," the dog said.

"What? I did all the work myself." The pig said. "Dog did not do anything. He just slept all day."

"No, I did all the work myself; Pig slept until I woke him up."

Pig and Dog began to quarrel.  The farmer became annoyed so he said:  

"Stop fighting.  Now, let's go to the field and prove.   

The one who did the most work will have left footprints in the ground."

So, they all went to the field.

"Look, father, look at my footprints," said the dog.

There were Dog's footprints everywhere.

"Where is my footprint?" asked the pig.

"Yes, where is your footprint, Pig?  

Pig, you did not do any work.   From now on you must eat bran and stay in the mud.

Dog, you are good, now you can eat rice and whatever I eat and stay in the house

with me."

Since then, Pig eats bran and stays in the mud.

And Dog eats rice and stays in the house.

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Chakacan (The Cicada)

Once the cicada cried lii lae lii lae haad ... lii lae lii lae haad...  To the sleepy owl the sounds seemed to say,

lii lae lii lae,
caa 
khwaung hae
sai hua nok khao

which means

lii lae lii lae
I will dare
cast a net
over the head of that owl.

The frightened owl defended himself by saying, "hok sak hok sak (I will throw a lance; I will throw a lance.)

The frightened deer under a mimosa tree heard that and thought that someone was throwing a lance at him.

He ran away so fast that he kicked the sesame vines and the sesame seeds hit the eyes of a wild pheasant.

The blinded pheasant at once scratched the ground ants' nest.

The startled ant ran to bite the snake's naval.

The painful snake then bit the guord's vine, and a guord fell right on the head of the chameleon's baby.

The chameleon went to the lion, "Please, king of the jungle, the snake bit the guord's vine that made a guord fall right on my baby."

The lion sent for the snake right away.  Once there, the lion inquired, "why did you bite the guord's vine?  That made a guord fall right on the chameleon's baby?"

"Oh, please sire, the ant bit my naval and I was hurt, so I bit whatever was near," replied the snake.

The lion then sent for the ant right away.  Once there, the lion inquired, "why did you bite the snake's naval?  That made the snake bite the guord's vine and the guord fell right on the chameleon's baby?"

"Oh, please sire, the wild pheasant scratched my nest that made me startled so I bit whatever was near," replied the ants.

The lion then sent for the wild pheasant right away.  Once there, the lion inquired, "why did you scratch the ants' nest?  That made the ant bite the snake's naval.  That made the snake bite the guord's vine, and made the guord fall right on the chameleon's baby?"

"Oh, please sire, the deer kicked the sesame vine and made the sesame seeds hit my eyes and blinded my vision, so at once I scratched the ants' nest," replied the wild pheasant.

The lion then sent for the deer right away.  Once there, the lion inquired, "why did you kick the sesame vine and make the sesame seeds hit the wild pheasant's eyes and blind its vision.   That's the reason why she scratched the ants' nest and made the ants bite the snake's naval and made the snake bite the guord's vine and the guord fell right on the chameleon's baby?

"Oh, please sire, the owl cried, "hok sak hok sak" (I will throw a lance; I will throw a lance.) that frightened me so much that I ran and kicked whatever was in my way."

The lion then sent for the owl right away.  Once there, the lion inquired, "why did you cry, "hok sak hok sak" (I will throw a lance; I will throw a lance.) that frightened the deer who ran and kicked the sesame vine and the sesame seeds hit the wild pheasant's eyes and blinded its vision.   That's the reason why she scratched the ants' nest and made the ant bite the snake's naval that made the snake bite the guord's vine and the guord fell right on the chameleon's baby?

"Oh, please sire, the cicada cried, "lii lae lii lae, ca khwuang hae sai hua nok khao"(lii lae lii lae, I will dare cast a net over the head of that owl.)  I was so frightened that I defended myself by crying, "hok sak hok sak" (I will throw a lance; I will throw a lance.)

The lion then sent for the cicada right away.  Once there, the lion inquired, "why did you cry, lii lae lii lae, ca khwuang hae sai hua nok khao" (lii lae lii lae, I will dare cast a net over the head of that owl" that frightened the owl so much that he cried in defense of himself, "hok sak hok sak" (I will throw a lance; I will throw a lance.) that frightened the deer who ran and kicked the sesame vine and the sesame seeds hit the wild pheasant's eyes and blinded its vision.   That's the reason why she scratched the ants' nest and made the ant bite the snake's naval that made the snake bite the guord's vine and the guord fell right on the chameleon's baby?

"Oh, please sire, that's the way I have been taught to cry," replied the cicada.

So the lion said, "Ha, now we know the root cause of all this.  So, it is you, cicada, who caused the death of the chameleon's baby."  Then the lion said, "Let's punish the cicada by making him pay tribute to us all."

The frightened cicada then replied, "Oh, please sire, I don't have anything to pay tribute with."

The lion then said, "Well, then we can all take your inside as payment."

Since then, the cicada's body has been hollow.

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Maeng Nguan (The Singing Cricket)

    One night, Indra heard a beautiful sound of music that went "yong, yong, yong." He was so pleased that he wanted to give a reward to the singer.   So, he said to his courtiers, "You must bring whoever that sang the beautiful song last night to me.  I wish to hear more of the beautiful song."

    So the courtiers went out making announcement, "Whoever sang the beautiful song last night must come forward; the Great Indra wishes to hear more of your song."

    The gekko stepped forward and said, "It's me that sang the beautiful song last night."

    "Then tell me what I need to prepare for your performance tonight for the Great Indra," asked one of the courtiers.

    "Oh, you must prepare a good size bamboo pipe and hang it on a pillar at the Great Indra's hall," said the gekko.

    All was done before night fell.  When night fell, the gekko crawled inside the bamboo pipe and began his song, "thod, thod, thod, tappo, tappo, tappo."

    The Great Indra then said, "Oh, you sang a beautiful song; I will give you a colorful jacket to wear."

    In the evening, the Great Indra again heard, "yong, yong, yong," the beautiful song again.  "The one that sang last night was beautiful, but it is not the same."  So, he said to his courtiers, "Do you know that I still hear the beautiful song?  The one I heard before the gekko came to sing?  Please go to find the singer for me."

    So the courtiers went out making the same announcement, "Whoever sang a beautiful song last night must come forward; the Great Indra wishes to hear more of your song."

    The bullfrog stepped forward and said, "It's me that sang the beautiful song last night."

    "Then tell me what I need to prepare for your performance tonight for the Great Indra," asked one of the courtiers.

    "Oh, you must prepare a good size bowl of water and place it at the foot of the stairs of the Great Indra's hall," said the bullfrog.

    All was done before night fell.  When night fell, the bullfrog crawled onto the bowl of water and began his song, "hueng aang, hueng aang, hueng aang."

    The Great Indra then said, "Oh, you sang a beautiful song; I will give you a vest to wear."

    In the evening, the Great Indra again heard, "yong, yong, yong," the beautiful song again.  "The one that sang last night was beautiful, but it is not the same."  So, he said to his courtiers, "Do you know that I still hear the beautiful song?  The one I heard before the gekko came to sing?  Please go to find the singer for me."

    This time the courtiers came across Maeng Nguan, the singing cricket.  So, they asked, "Did you sing a beautiful song last night?"

    "Yes, I did.  Why did you ask?" asked Maeng Nguan, the singing cricket.

    "Oh, the Great Indra wants to hear you sing again tonight.   Would you come?"

    "Yes, I will come," said Maeng Nguan, the singing cricket.

   "Then tell me what I need to prepare for your performance tonight for the Great Indra," asked one of the courtiers.

    "Oh, absolutely nothing.  I will just fly to light at a pillar of the Great Indra's hall and sing," said Maeng Nguan, the singing cricket.

    So, that night Maeng Nguan, the singing cricket went to light at a pillar of the Great Indra's hall and began singing, "yong, yong, yong."

    The Great Indra was so delighted that he granted divine food to Maeng Nguan, the singing cricket and gave him divine eyes so he can see both night and day.  So, the cricket takes no normal food.  All he enjoys is the dew drops from heaven.

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The Dog's Urinating Habit

    Once the dog had three legs.  He was not happy with that because he could not run as fast as other animals and could not jump as far or as high as others who had four legs.  So, he went up to the Great Indra's heaven to ask for his fourth leg.

    "Oh, Great Indra, please give me the fourth leg like you did to other animals," asked the dog.

    The Great Indra said, "Well, there is no leg left.   I have given them all away to the other animals that came earlier.  You are too late, Dog."

    "Oh, please, Great Indra, please give it to me.   If I don't get my fourth leg, I won't go down to earth," said the determined dog.

    "I don't have any more leg to give you.  I have given all legs away.  All I have now are the legs of my stool.  Well, since you insist, why don't you take one of the legs of my stool," suggested Indra.

    "Oh, thanks so much Great Indra.  Now I can jump as high or as far as others and I can run as fast as them too," said the dog.

    "Now that you have the leg of my stool, Dog, you must promise to keep it as clean as possible.  Don't you ever soil it in anyway," commanded Indra.

    "Yes, Sire," confirmed the dog.   "Even when I urinate, I will lift my fourth leg up to keep it clean."

 

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Notes

     Bachieng and Malong was retold by Bounma Khounethalangsy in The Great Gourd Of  Heaven : A Selection of the Folk-tales and Stories of Laos. Collected by Roisin O Boyle and Thavisack Phanmathanh, Vientiane: Vannasin Magazine, The Ministry of Information and Culture, 1992, pp. 5-7.  

   Samrit Buasisavath (In other places, his name is spelled Samlid Buasisawat), retold the story of Phu Phra and Phun Nang in The Great Gourd Of  Heaven : A Selection of the Folk-tales and Stories of Laos. Collected by Roisin O Boyle and Thavisack Phanmathanh, Vientiane: Vannasin Magazine, The Ministry of Information and Culture, 1992, pp. 9-17.  It is well-known that this story is adapted by the Lao people from one of the Jataka tales called Suddhanu Jataka.

    The Black Smith was first collected in So Phlainoi's Collection of Lao Folktales, Retold in English by Wajuppa Tossa and Prasong Saihong.

    Crow and Peacock was first retold in English by Margaret Read MacDonald, from Thai Tales by Supaporn Vathanaprida, Fulcrum, 1996.

      Dog and Pig was first retold by Rachan Ninlawannapha; translated into English by Wajuppa Tossa.

   The Cicada story was retold by Mr. Bunyok Saensunthon on 11 January 2001 at his home in Vientiane.  He is 69 years old.  He received his highest level of Pali education from Wat Ongtue in Vientiane in 1957.  He has been a teacher in several temples in Vientiane until he retired from the teaching job in 1992.  Presently, he is a consultant to the Preservation of Lao Manuscripts Project under the supervision of the Ministry of Information and Culture.  

    The Cricket story was retold by Mr. Bunyok Saensunthon on the same day as the Cicada story.

   The Dog story was also retold by Mr. Bunyok Saensunthon on the same day as the other two in this type.

 

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