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Home » Tale

A Balinese Folktale: Amad and Mohamad  

by on Sunday, 29 July 2007No Comment | 958 views

Nakoda prince of Sam dreamed of a white dove with red spots. He asked a priest if this was lucky or unlucky. ‘Very lucky indeed’ said the priest ‘if you could obtain such a bird.’ The king inquired everywhere and was told that there was a white dove with red spots in the house of the widow Kasihan. He at once went to her house but she refused to give him the bird, because it was the pet of her two sons Amad and Mohamad. The prince was wretched and complained to the priest who gave him a love-spell so that when he went back to the widow’s house she at once fell madly in love with him. But he would only consent to sleep with her if she would kill the bird and give it to him.

When Amad and Mohamad came home they looked every where for their bird but could not find it. Then the servant told them how it had been killed by Nakoda, who was inside sleeping whit their mother. The children found bird lying dead on the roof Amad ate the head and Mohamad the heart and they both ran far away into the forest.

When nakoda awoke has asked for the bird and was told what had happen to it. He was furious and on gave orders to find the two rascals and bring them to him. But they were being sheltered by a hermit in his cave. And the hermit, when knew their story, gave them weapons to fight against Nakoda, and they fought and won.

Now the King of Mesir (Egypt) died and left no heir and it was proclaimed abroad that whoever can ride his white elephant, which was very wild and savage should marry his daughter Ratna Kusuna and become the King of Egypt. All neighboring princes and nobles came together, but nobody succeed in mounting the white elephant, and it ran away into the forest where Amad and Mohamad were hiding. It found Mohamad sleep alone under the banyan-tree, while Amad was away fetching water, and it picked him up and set him on its back. Mohamad tore up his head-cloth into little bits and threw them along the track of the elephant so that Amad might be able to find him. At last they came to a great lake, which elephant sprang with one bound and brought Mohamad to Mesir. And he was made king, but refused to marry Ratna Kusuna till his brother has been found.

Meanwhile Amad returned to the Banyan-tree and found no Mohamad. He followed the track of bits of the stuff till reached the shore of the lake, but when it ended there he sat down bitterly. One day a widow of Krandan went into the forest and found Amad weeping beside the lake. She took him home and with her and he helped her garden, and tied the flowers in the beautiful bunches which the widow sold in the market.

The brother of the late King of Egypt had a daughter named Siti Bregedab, who sent her maid one day to market to buy flowers, and by chance she bought them from the wodow of Krandan. When Siti saw how tastefully the flowers were arranged, she sent for the widow, and learned that it was the work of Amad. He was called to the palace and arranged flower all day till the evening when princess gave him food and drink. But when he had eaten he became drunk and brought up the dove’s head. A bright light shone from which enchanted Siti Bregedab, who swallowed the head herself and drove Amad away.

In the forest he met two young genies disputing about three wonders they had received from their father: a flaying shirt, an arrow which always returned to the bow, and a sack always full of one’s favorite food. They could not decide how to divide these wonders between them, and asked Amad’s help. ‘I will shoot the arrow and you shall both run after it, whoever catches it shall keep it.’ So Amad shot the arrow and they both set off running. Then he held up the bow and the arrow returned to it. He put on the shirt, took the sack and flew straight to Siti Bregedab’s palace. ‘Well, where have you come from?’ she said. ‘I wanted to offer you something good in return for what you gave me!’ then he opened the sack and took out the most delicious food and drink. She in her turn ate and drank and became very drunk. And she vomited and brought up the dove’s head, which Amad immediately seized and flew away to his foster-mother, the widow of Krandan.

When Siti Bregedab came to herself, she was in fury, and sent her patih (minister) to Krandan with order to kill Amad. But it was the patih himself who died, by falling into a hedge of bamboo stakes. Amad flew at once to the palace with an intention of killing Siti. But in the moment that he aimed his arrow at her she threw off her clothes and stood naked before him. He was so enchanted that he forgot his rage and wanted to take her on the spot. But she insisted on going to an island where they could be alone, and when they were under a Kastuba tree, she said they must wait until she cooled down. While he was waiting for her to cool he fell asleep, and she stole his three wonders and flew away. Amad awoke and heard two birds talking together in the branches about the secret of Kastuba tree. And when they had flown away he climbed the tree and broke the most easterly bough, which changed into a flying hiorse. Then he broke off the topmost bough, and it became a golden whip. So he mounted the horse and took the whip and flew away.

Amad came to the land of Sulaiman where Dewi Soja was queen. She had gone to the sea to bathe. But when she returned and found Amad’s horse tied up in the palace she was very angry and ordered her patihs to kill Amad. Amad flew up to the sky, and the patihs flew up after him but were beaten down by golden whip. The queen herself flew up to fight him; but her father, Nabi Sulaiman appeared and reproached her for fighting against man she was destined to marry. She would consent tomarry im her patihs were restored to life, Nabi Sulaiman, who was a magician restored them all, and a great wedding was celebrated. Amad became the King of Sulaiman and lived happily until she became pregnant. Then he bade her farewell and set off to visit his foster-mother, the widow of Krandan. Here he heard that Siti Bregedab had been stolen by the King of Besah. Her father proclaimed that whoever brought her back should marry her; so Amad set off in search of her to Besah. He killed two patihs who were guarding her and carried her back to Egypt. Their wedding was celebrated, Mohamad recognized his long-lost brother, and at last was able to celebrate his own wedding with Ratna Kusuna, the Queen of Egypt.

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