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Main > Slavic Folktale > Fairy tale "The Nightingale in the Mosque - The Story of the Sultan's Youngest Son and the Princess Flower o' the World"

The Nightingale in the Mosque - The Story of the Sultan's Youngest Son and the Princess Flower o' the World

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"Brothers," the youngest suggested, "let us go to the Dervish and ask him why it is that the third mosque is not yet beautiful enough. Perhaps he will tell us what is lacking."

So they went to the Dervish and asked him what he meant by saying to the Sultan that the third mosque was not yet beautiful enough and they begged him to tell them what it was that was lacking.

The Dervish fixed his eyes in the distance and slightly swaying his body back and forth answered them in his sing-song tone.

"The mosque is beautiful," he said, "and the fountain in its midst is beautiful, but where is the glorious Nightingale Gisar? With the Nightingale Gisar singing beside the fountain, then indeed would the Sultan's third mosque be the most beautiful mosque in the world!"

"Only tell us where this glorious Nightingale is," the brothers begged, "and we will get him if it costs us our lives!"

"I cannot tell you that," the Dervish droned. "You will have to go out into the world and find him for yourselves."

So the three brothers returned to the Sultan and told him what the Dervish had said.

"All your third mosque lacks to be the most beautiful mosque in the world," they told him, "is the Nightingale Gisar singing beside the fountain. So grieve no more, father. We, your three sons, will go out into the world in quest of this glorious bird and within a year's time we will return with the bird in our hands if so be that it is anywhere to be found in all the wide world."

The Sultan blessed them and they set forth the three of them, side by side. They traveled together until they reached a place where three roads branched. Upon the stone of the left-hand road nothing was written. Upon the stone of the middle road was the inscription: Who goes this way returns. The inscription on the third stone read: Who goes this way shall meet many dangers and may never return.

"Let us part here," the oldest brother said, "and each take a separate road. Then if all goes well, let us meet here again on this same spot one year hence.

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