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Main > Czechoslovak folktale > Fairy tale "The Betrothal Gifts: The Story of Kubik and the Frog"

The Betrothal Gifts: The Story of Kubik and the Frog

Then they all stepped into the old kitchen that was black with the smoke of many years and the handsome young lord sat down on the bench behind the table as though that was where he always sat. The two brothers and their brides shrank back against the oven and held their breath.

Then the handsome young lord said to the old man: “Don’t you know me?”

“Where could I ever have seen your lordship?” the farmer asked, humbly. He kept bobbing so low it was a wonder he didn’t bump his head against the floor.

“And do neither of your sons know me? I think these are your sons, aren’t they?”

The farmer kept on bowing and the two sons looked down, too embarrassed to speak.

At length the handsome young lord said: “What, don’t you know your own son, Kubik, whom you used to beat for stealing when he showed you his betrothal gifts?”

At that the old man looked at him closely and cried out: “Bless my soul, I believe it is our Kubik! But who could recognize the boy!... And is this his bride? That settles it! Kubik shall have the farm! Kubik has brought home the most beautiful bride!”

“Kubik doesn’t need the farm,” the old queen said, “nor will you need it any longer nor your other sons. You will all come home with us to our kingdom over which Kubik is now king. And may God grant you many years to live on in peace and quiet.”

The farmer was overjoyed at this arrangement. He embraced his son, and his son’s bride, and his son’s royal mother-in-law.

He gave his farm to the poorest man in the village and then he and his sons accompanied Kubik back to his kingdom. There he lived long in peace and comfort enjoying the thought that good fortune had come to them all on account of his determination not to divide the farm.

The poor man who inherited the farm prayed for him and his sons every night and never tired of telling the story of how Kubik became a king and his brothers courtiers.

So for many years the memory of Kubik was kept green. Now people are beginning to forget him, so I thought it was time that I tell his story again.

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