Russian Folktales from the Collection of A. Afanasyev: A Dual-Language Book

Russian Folktales from the Collection of A. Afanasyev: A Dual-Language Book

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Overview

Russian Folktales from the Collection of A. Afanasyev: A Dual-Language Book by Alexander Afanasyev

This original dual-language edition features new translations of stories selected from the authoritative three-volume collection by famed author Alexander Afanasyev, Popular Russian Tales. Afanasyev recorded hundreds of folktales, the first compilations of which were published between 1855 and 1867 and featured such characteristically Russian figures as Vasilisa, Baba Yaga, Ivan Tsarevich, and the glorious Firebird. This edition's fables include The Little Hen; The Cockerel and the Hand-Mill; Baba Yaga; The Little White Duck; and Ivanko Medvedko.
Suitable for high school and college intermediate-level Russian classes, these timeless tales will captivate readers of all ages. Left-hand pages feature the original Russian text; right-hand pages contain the new English translation by Sergey Levchin, who provides an informative Introduction.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780486493923
Publisher: Dover Publications
Publication date: 05/21/2014
Series: Dover Dual Language Russian
Pages: 240
Sales rank: 304,476
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

Russian folklorist Alexander Nikolayevich Afanasyev (1826–71) recorded and published more than 600 folk and fairy tales. His first collection was published in eight volumes from 1855 to 1867.
Kiev-born Sergey Levchin emigrated to the United States at the age of 12. He received his BA from St. John's College and an MA in Russian literature and linguistics from Columbia University. He is also the author of Dover's Easy Russian Phrase Book.

Read an Excerpt

Russian Folktales from the Collection of A. Afanasyev

A Dual-Language Book


By SERGEY LEVCHIN

Dover Publications, Inc.

Copyright © 2014 Dover Publications, Inc.
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-0-486-78298-0



CHAPTER 1

THE LITTLE HEN

There once lived an old man and a little old woman, they had a pretty little Tartary hen, it laid an egg in the corner by the window: a speckled, freckled, tough little, queer little egg! Put it up on the ledge; a mousy went by, flicked its tail, the ledge fell down and the egg broke up. The old man is crying, the old woman's wailing, the stove is blazing, the roof is quaking, their little granddaughter smothered herself from grief. Here comes the altar-bread baker, asking: what's all the crying about? So the old folks told her the whole thing from the start: "How could we not cry? We have a pretty little Tartary hen, it laid an egg in the corner by the window: a speckled, freckled, tough little, queer little egg! Put it up on the ledge; a mousy went by, flicked its tail, the ledge fell down, and the egg broke up! Me, the old man, I'm crying, the old woman's wailing, the stove is blazing, the roof is quaking, our little granddaughter smothered herself from grief." When the baker woman heard this—she broke all her breads and threw them away. Here comes the sexton, asking the baker: why she broke the breads and threw them away?

So she told him the whole of the trouble from the start; the sexton ran up the bell tower and smashed all the bells. Here comes the priest, asking the sexton: why he smashed all the bells? So the sexton told him the whole of the trouble, and the priest ran off and tore up all his books.

CHAPTER 2

THE FLY'S TOWER

A muzhik went driving with his pots and lost a great old pitcher. A fly came along and set up house inside. Well, a day goes by and another goes by. A mosquito comes along, knocking at the door: "Who's in the palace, the lofty palace?" — "Me, a buzz-fly; and who are you?" — "I'm whiner-mosquito." — "Come live with me." So the two of them were living together. Then a mouse came scurrying, knocking at the door: "Who's in the palace, the lofty palace?" — "Me, a buzz-fly and whiner-mosquito; and who are you?" — "I'm filch-on-the-sly." — "Come live with us." Then they were three. A frog came bounding, knocking at the door: "Who's in the palace, the lofty palace?" — "Me, a buzz-fly, whiner-mosquito and filch-on-the-sly; and who are you?" — "I'm babble-by-the-water." — "Come live with us." So then they were four.

A hare came, knocking at the door: "Who's in the palace, the lofty palace?" — "Me, a buzz-fly, whiner-mosquito, filch-on-the-sly, babble-by-the-water; and who are you?" — "I'm dodge-in-the-field." — "Come on in." So now they were five. A fox came too, knocking at the door: "Who's in the palace, the lofty palace?" — "Me, a buzz-fly, whiner-mosquito, filch-on-the-sly, babble-by-the-water, dodge-in-the-field; and who are you?" — "I'm fair-in-the-field." — "Come right in." A dog padded over, knocking at the door: "Who's in the palace, the lofty palace?" — "Me, a buzz-fly, whiner-mosquito, filch-on-the-sly, babble-by-the-water, dodge-in-the-field, and fair-in-the-field; and who are you?" — "I'm bow-wow." — "Come live with us." The dog clambered in.

Then a wolf ran up, knocking at the door: "Who's in the palace, the lofty palace?" — "Me, a buzz-fly, whiner-mosquito, filch-on-the-sly, babble-by-the-water, dodge-in-the-field, fair-in-the-field and bow-wow; and who are you?" — "I'm snatch-from-the-brush." — "Come live with us." So then all of them were living together. A bear caught wind of this palace and came knocking at the door—they can barely breathe in there: "Who's in the palace, the lofty palace?" — "Me, a buzz-fly, whiner-mosquito, filch-on-the-sly, babble-by-the-water, dodge-in-the-field, fair-in-the-field, bowwow and snatch-from-the-brush; and who are you?" — "I'm bane of the woods!" He sat down on the pitcher and squashed them all.

CHAPTER 3

THE GOLDEN FISH

In the sea, in the Nile, on Stormy Isle stood a little old rickety cabin; in that cabin lived an old man and an old woman. The two of them lived in great need; so the old man made a net and went down to the sea to fish: and that was all he could do to earn his daily livelihood. One time the old man cast his net, and as he drew it back, it seemed to him heavier than it had ever been before: he barely got it out. Only the net was empty; there was just one little fish in it, but it was no ordinary fish—the fish was golden. Then the fish pleaded with him in human tongue: "Don't take me, old man! Let me go back into the blue sea; I could be of use to you: whatever you ask, I'll do it!" The old man thought this over and said: "I don't need anything from you: go and roam the seas!" He tossed the golden fish back in the water and went home. So then the old woman asks him: "Did you catch much, old man?" — "Nothing but a measly golden fish, and even that I threw back in the water; she begged and pleaded with me: let me go back into the blue sea, she said. I could be of use to you: whatever you ask for, I'll do it! I pitied the little fish, didn't ask for a ransom, let her go scot-free." — "Ah, you old fiend! A great fortune fell right in your hands, and you let it slip away."

Well, the old woman raged and railed at the old man from morning to night, wouldn't give him a moment's peace. "Why couldn't you at least get some bread out of her! Soon there won't be so much as a dry crust left in the house; then what will you eat?" The old man couldn't take it anymore, he went to the golden fish for some bread; he came to the sea and cried in a loud voice: "Here, fishy, fishy! Turn your tail to the sea, your head to me." The fish swam out to the shore: "What do you need, old man?" — "The old woman's raging, get us some bread saying." — "Go on home, you'll have plenty of bread." The old man came back: "Well, old woman, have we got bread?" — "Bread we got plenty; here's the trouble: the washtub split, now there's no place to do the washing; go back to the golden fish, ask her for a new one."

The old man went down to the sea: "Here, fishy, fishy! Turn your tail to the sea, your head to me." The golden fish came out: "What do you need, old man?" — "The old woman sent me, she's asking for a new washtub." — "Fine, you'll have your washtub too." So the old man went home—no sooner is he in the door, than the old woman's at him again: "Go back to the golden fish," she's saying, "ask her to build us a new cabin; this one's not fit for living, it'll come crashing down any minute!" The old man went down to the sea: "Here, fishy, fishy! Turn your tail to the sea, your head to me." The fish swam up, turned her head to him, tail to the sea, asking: "What do you need, old man?" — "Build us a new cabin; the old woman's railing, won't leave me a moment's peace. I won't live in this old shack, she says, it'll come crashing down any minute!" — "Cheer up, old man! Go on home and pray to God, all will be done."

The old man came home—in his yard stands a cabin of oak so new and fine, and carved with wondrous designs. Then the old woman comes running out, raging and railing like never before. "Ah, you old cur! You don't know what to do with your luck! You got a new cabin, and you think you're all finished! Now, go on back to the golden fish and tell her: I won't be a peasant no more, I want to be governor, and have all the good folk doing my bidding, falling over themselves whenever they so much as catch a glimpse of me." The old man went down to the sea, crying out: "Here, fishy, fishy! Turn your tail to the sea, your head to me." The fish came out, turned her tail to the sea, her head to him: "What do you need, old man?" The old man says: "The old woman's gone clean mad, won't leave me be. She won't be a peasant no more, wants to be governor." — "Fine, cheer up! Go on home and pray to God, all will be done."

The old man came home—in his yard stands a cabin of oak so new and fine, and carved with wondrous designs. Then the old woman comes running out, raging and railing like never before. "Ah, you old cur! You don't know what to do with your luck! You got a new cabin, and you think you're all finished! Now, go on back to the golden fish and tell her: I won't be a peasant no more, I want to be governor, and have all the good folk doing my bidding, falling over themselves whenever they so much as catch a glimpse of me." The old man went down to the sea, crying out: "Here, fishy, fishy! Turn your tail to the sea, your head to me." The fish came out, turned her tail to the sea, her head to him: "What do you need, old man?" The old man says: "The old woman's gone clean mad, won't leave me be. She won't be a peasant no more, wants to be governor." — "Fine, cheer up! Go on home and pray to God, all will be done."

The old man came home, and there is a house of stone three stories high where the cabin used to stand: servants are running up and down the yard, cooks banging pots in the kitchen, the old woman is sitting on a high throne, decked out rich brocade, shouting orders. "Greetings, wife!" says the old man. "Ah, what a boor! How dare you call me, a governor, your wife? Hey, you there! Take this muzhichok to the stables and have him whipped so it counts." Straightaway servants came running, grabbed the old man by the scruff of his neck, and dragged him off to the stables; there the stable boys gave him a taste of their whips, and they feasted him so well, he barely got back on his feet. After that the old woman made him a sweeper; they gave him a broom, and told him to sweep the yard, and to take his food and drink in the kitchen. Those were bad times for the old man: do nothing but sweep the yard all day long, and if there's a speck of dirt any place—it's back to the stables! "Some witch!" thinks the old man. "All that good living's gone right to her thick head. Now she won't even count me for a husband!"

Well, this went on for a while, till the old woman had had enough of being governor. So she summons the old man and bids him: "Go to the golden fish, you old fiend; tell her: I won't be governor no more, I want to be queen." The old man went down to the sea: "Here, fishy, fishy! Turn your tail to the sea, your head to me." The golden fish came out: "What do you need, old man?" — "Well, my old woman's raving like never before: she won't be governor no more, wants to be queen." — "Cheer up! Go on home and pray to God, all will be done." The old man went back, lo—in place of the old house stands a lofty palace with a golden roof; sentries are marching up and down, slinging their rifles; a grand park is laid out in the back, a green meadow in the front, and all the troops are assembled on that meadow. The old woman, got up as a queen, comes out onto the balcony with her nobles and her generals, reviewing the troops: the drums are beating, the music's blaring, the soldiers are shouting "Hurray!"

Well, this went on for a while, till the old woman had had enough of being queen; so she bid her servants find the old man and bring him into her august presence. Then there was a great hubbub, the generals bustling, the nobles hustling: "What old man? Who?" At long last they found him in the back yard and took him to the queen. "Listen, old fiend!" the old woman says to him. "Go to the golden fish and tell her: I won't be queen no more, I'll be mistress of the seas, and have all the seas and all the fishes at my command." The old man tried to protest—nothing doing! Either you go or your head rolls! So the old man willy-nilly went down to the sea, he gets down there and says: "Here, fishy, fishy! Turn your tail to the sea, your head to me." The golden fish is nowhere to be seen. The old man called out again—again nothing! He called her a third time—suddenly the sea grew stormy and rough: it was clear and calm a moment ago, now it's nearly black. The golden fish swam out to the shore: "What do you need, old man?" — "The old woman's raving like never before; she won't be queen no more, wants to be mistress of the seas, ruling over all the waters, lording it over all the fishes."

But the golden fish said nothing; she just turned her tail and vanished in the deep sea waters. The old man came home, and he can't believe his eyes: the palace is clean gone, and in its place stands a little old rickety cabin, and in the cabin sits an old woman in a tattered tunic. And so they went back to their old life: the old man was fishing again, but no matter how many times he cast his nets into the sea, he could never catch the golden fish again.

CHAPTER 4

THE COCKEREL AND THE HAND-MILL

Once upon a time there lived an old man and an old woman, poor as dirt! They hadn't any bread, you see; so they drove out to the woods, gathered some acorns, brought them home, and that's what they ate. Well, there's no telling how long it went on like this, only one time the old woman dropped an acorn down into the cellar. The acorn sprouted, and in a little while the shoot reached up to the floor. The old woman took note of it, saying: "Old man! We'd better cut a hole in the floor; let the oak grow higher; when it's grown, we won't go to the woods for acorns, we'll pick them right in the house." The old man cut a hole in the floor; the sapling grew and grew, till it grew as high as the ceiling. The old man broke up the ceiling, and then took off the roof; the tree kept growing and growing, till it grew all the way up to heaven. Then the old folks had no more acorns, so the old man took a sack and climbed up the oak tree.

He climbed and climbed till he got up to heaven. He wandered in heaven for a while, when lo: a cockerel, golden coxcomb-jackanapes, and a hand- mill, one beside the other. Well, the old man didn't think too long, he grabbed the cockerel and the mill and climbed down to his hut. He gets down there and says: "What'll we do, old woman, what'll we eat?" "Hold on," says the old woman, "let me try this hand-mill." She took the hand-mill and started grinding; and it's cakes and pies, cakes and pies! A cake and a pie with every turn!.. So she fed her old man.

Then some lord was passing by, and he stopped in at the old folks' place. "Have you got anything to eat?" he asks. The old woman says: "What could we give you to eat, precious, maybe some cakes?" She took the mill and started grinding: cakes and pies plopped out of it. The guest finished eating and says: "Sell me your hand-mill, nanna."—"No," says the old woman. "That's not allowed." Well, he stole her hand-mill anyhow. When the old folks found that the mill had been stolen, they were heartbroken.

"Hold on," says the cockerel, golden coxcomb, "I'll fly after him!" He flew to the lord's palace, perched on the gates and cried out: "Cock-a-doodle- doo! Lord, O lord, give us our hand-mill, gold and blue! Lord, O lord, give us our hand-mill, gold and blue!" Soon as the lord heard this, he shouted: "Hey, boy! Take him and throw him in the water." They caught the cockerel and threw him down a well; so he started chattering: "Drink, little nose! Drink, little mouth!"—till he drank up all the water. He drank up all the water, and he flew to the lord's palace, perched on the balcony and cried out again: "Cock-a-doodle-doo! Lord, O lord, give us our hand-mill, gold and blue! Lord, O lord, give us our hand-mill, gold and blue!" The lord ordered his cook to throw him into a hot stove. They caught the cockerel and threw him in the stove—right into the fire; so he started chattering: "Pour, little nose! Pour, little mouth!" And he put out all the fire in the oven. He flapped his wings and flew into the lord's chambers, crying again: "Cock-a-doodle-doo! Lord, O lord, give us our hand-mill, gold and blue! Lord, O lord, give us our hand-mill, gold and blue!" The guests heard this and ran away, and the master of the house ran after them. The cockerel, golden coxcomb, snatched up the hand-mill and took it back to the old folks.

[Russian Text Not Reproducible in ASCII].


(Continues...)

Excerpted from Russian Folktales from the Collection of A. Afanasyev by SERGEY LEVCHIN. Copyright © 2014 Dover Publications, Inc.. Excerpted by permission of Dover Publications, Inc..
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Table of Contents

Contents

Introduction.,
The Little Hen.,
The Fly's Tower,
The Golden Fish.,
The Cockerel and the Hand-Mill.,
Right and Wrong.,
Baba Yaga,
Prince Danila-Govorila.,
The Little White Duck,
The Feather of Finist Splendid Falcon,
The Sea King and Vasilisa Most Ingenious,
The Tale of Ivan Tsarevich, the Fire-Bird and the Gray Wolf.,
The Bogatyrs Medvedko, Usynya, Gorynya and Dubynya,
Blast Bogatyr Ivan the Cow's Son.,
The Tale of the Famed and Valiant Bogatyr Ilya Muromite and the Robber Nightingale.,
Ivanko Medvedko.,
Ivanushka-Dummy,
The Hunter and His Wife.,
The Prankster.,

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