Cinderella: Three Hundred and Forty-five Variants of Cinderella, Catskin, and Cap O' Rushes, abstracted and tabulated UNDER CONSTRUCTION | Annotated Tale

8. Brother Ram, The

Armenische Bibliothek. Herausgegeben von Abgar Jannissiany. Leipzig, 1887. IV, pp. 1-10. "Märchenund Sagen", mit einer Einleitung von Griker Ohalatisam.



Ill-treated heroine and brother (by step persuaded to abandon them in the mountains. Brother is thirsty. Sister urges him not to drink (1) rain water in horse's hoof-prints, or he will turn into foal; (2) in print of ox-hoofs, or he will turn into calf; (3) buffalo-hoofs, (4) bear's paws, (5) pig's feet, and (6) wolf's feet, for fear of similar transformations. Finally, he drinks from print of sheep's foot, and is turned into ram. Heroine and ram reach home. Step-mother seeks to slay ram; heroine escapes with it to mountain. While spinning she drops distaff, which rolls into cave; goes after it, leaving ram grazing. Finds thousand- year-old crone (Dew), who offers her fish to eat, and brings snakes and dragons. Heroine is terrified, and weeps. Tells her story. Crone makes fire, puts fire-hook into stove, and says: "If Blackness passes by, don't wake me; if Rainbow-hued flies past, put glowing fire-rake to my feet to wake me." She goes to sleep, with head on heroine's knees. Black monster flies past. Presently, Rainbow-hued appears. Heroine throws fire-hook at feet of crone, who wakes, and finds heroine's locks and raiment turned to gold. Heroine takes leave of crone, and drives rain home. Buries gold clothes in hole near stove, and dons old ones before she is seen by step-mother, who notices gold locks, learns how she got them, and all that has happened. Sends own daughter to mountain to do likewise. Crone turns her into scare-crow, and sends her hack. Step-mother and step-sister go to see wedding. Heroine follows in Magic dress--Hurries home before them-- Lost shoe. It falls into stream. King's horses, seeing gold shoe, refuse to drink. Wise men discover reason: shoe taken to King--Shoe marriage test --Animal witness (cock)--Happy marriage -- Ram taken to palace--Step-mother and step-sister visit heroine; propose bathing; push her far out to sea. Fish swallows heroine. Substituted bride. Heroine, inside fish, hears voice of bell-ringer; begs him cross himself seven times, and tell King not to slay brother ram. King goes at night to sea-shore with bell-ringer; hears heroine's voice; springs into sea, cuts open fish with sword, and delivers her--Villain Nemesis. Step-mother and step-sister bound to horse's tail--Three apples fall from heaven.


(1) Widower with boy and girl marries widow with one daughter. Step-mother persuades father to desert his two children in the mountains. He leads them to uninhabited spot and bids them rest, he gives them bread; boy wants to drink; father puts his stick in ground, throws his coat over it, and tells children to sit in shade of coat whilst he fetches them water. He leaves them sorrowfully, but never returns; and they seek him in vain.-- (2) At last one takes the stick the other the coat, and they wander on and on. Presently they see the prints of horses' hoofs filled with rain. Brother wants to drink, but sister stops him or he would become a foal. They come upon prints of ox hoofs. Again brother would drink, but sister hinders him lest he turn into a calf. She forbids his drinking from the prints of buffalo hoofs, of bear's paws, of pig's feet, of wolf's paws, of sheep's feet, for fear of similar transformations. But brother is dying of thirst and drinks from the print of sheep's feet, and is transformed into a ram, and runs bleating after sister.-- (3) They wander for a long time; at length reach home. Step-mother tells father to kill ram, which she craves to eat. Sister saves ram at the last moment and leads him into the mountains.-- (4) Every day she takes him to pasture and meanwhile spins thread. Once her distaff falls from her hand and rolls into a cave. Leaving ram grazing she goes after distaff; finds in the cave a thousand-year- old Deva lying, who seeing girl says: "It is impossible for feathered bird or creeping snake to penetrate here; how have you managed to enter, maiden?" Heroine in terror replies: "From love to you, grandmamma!" Old woman makes heroine sit by her and asks her about this and that; then says: "I will fetch you fish; you must be hungry." She brings snakes and dragons, and heroine afraid, weeps. Old woman asks why, and she says:" I remember my mother and therefore weep." She then tells all that has befallen her.-- (5) Old woman says she will sleep with head on heroine's knees. She makes a fire, puts fire-hook into stove and says: "If Blackness passes by, don't wake me; if Rainbow-hued flies past, put the glowing fire-rake to my feet that I may wake." Then she goes to sleep. Soon afterwards heroine sees a hideous black monster fly past, and she remains silent. Pre she sees the Rainbow-hued; then she seizes the glowing fire-hook and flings it at feet of old woman, who says: "Bah! how the fleas bite!" and wakes up.-- (6) Heroine rises too; her locks and clothes have been changed to gold by the lustre of the Rainbow-hued. She kisses old woman's hand and asks permission to leave; then takes Brother Ram home. Step-mother is out when they arrive. Heroine secretly digs a hole near Stove and buries gold clothes, then dons old ones. Step-mother returns, notices her golden locks, and asks how she obtained them. Heroine tells her everything.-- (7) Next day step-mother sends own daughter to the mountain. There she purposely drops her distaff which rolls to cave. She goes after it; old Deva changes her into a scare and sends her home.-- (8) That day king's son is to be married. Step-mother adorns own daughter's head and takes her to palace to see wedding. Heroine dons gold dress and shoes and goes after them. Hurrying to reach home before step-mother she drops one gold shoe in the spring. King's horses are taken to well, start back at sight of shoe and refuse to drink. King sends for wise men to ask reason.-- (9) Gold shoe is found, and king proclaims his son shall wed whomsoever shoe fits. Shoe is tried throughout the city. Step-mother pushes heroine into stove and displays own daughter.-- (10) Cock flies over the threshold and crows three times: "Kikeriki! the fairest of the fair sits in the stove." King's messengers push step-mother aside, bring forth heroine and fit shoe. She is to be king's bride, and, clad in gold dress, driving Brother Ram before her, she goes to palace. King's son marries her, and they feast seven days and seven nights.-- (11) Ore day step-mother and step-sister go to visit heroine. Step-mother proposes bathing; then pushes heroine far out to sea and a large fish swallows her.-- (12) Than she dresses own daughter in gold dress and seats her in heroine's place at palace, hiding her face and head that she may not be recognised.-- (13) heroine from inside fish hears voice of bell- ringer and cries to him to cross himself seven times when he has summoned the people to church, then go and tell king's son not to slaughter Brother Ram. Bell-ringer twice hears the voice and goes to tell king's son, who returns with him at night to sea-shore.-- (14) heroine cries out as before, and king's son, recognising his wife's voice, draws sword, springs into sea, rips open fish, and delivers her. They go home.-- (15) King's son sends for step-mother and asks: "What present shall I make you? A barley-fed steed or a black-handled knife?" Step-mother says: "May the black-handled knife pierce the breast of your enemy, but give rue the barley-fed steed." King's son orders step-mother and daughter to be bound to the horse's tail and driven over hills and rocks till nothing is left of them but their ears and a tuft of hair. Brother Ram, heroine and king's son live happily together.

Three apples fall down from heaven.

Bibliographic Information

Tale Title: 8. Brother Ram, The
Tale Author/Editor: Cox, Marian Roalfe
Book Title: Cinderella: Three Hundred and Forty-five Variants of Cinderella, Catskin, and Cap O' Rushes, abstracted and tabulated UNDER CONSTRUCTION
Book Author/Editor: Cox, Marian Roalfe
Publisher: David Nutt for the Folklore Society
Publication City: London
Year of Publication: 1893
Country of Origin: Armenia
Classification: ATU 510A: Cinderella

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