The Wonderful Frog

: The Folk-tales Of The Magyars

There was once, I don't know where, a man who had three daughters. One

day the father thus spoke to the eldest girl: "Go, my daughter, and

fetch me some fresh water from the well." The girl went, but when she

came to the well a huge frog called out to her from the bottom, that he

would not allow her to draw water in her jug until she threw him down

the gold ring on her finger. "Nothing else? is that all you want?"

ed the girl, "I won't give away my rings to such an ugly creature

as you," and she returned as she came with the empty pitchers. So the

father sent the second girl, and she fared as the first; the frog would

not let her have any water, as she refused to throw down her gold ring.

Her father gave his two elder daughters a good scolding, and then thus

addressed the youngest: "You go, Betsie, my dear, you have always been a

clever girl: I'm sure you will be able to get some water, and will not

allow your father to suffer thirst; go, shame your sisters!" Betsie

picked up the pitchers and went, but the frog again refused the water

unless she threw her ring down; but she, as she was very fond of her

father, threw the ring in as demanded, and returned home with full

pitchers to her father's great delight.

In the evening, as soon as darkness set in, the frog crawled out of the

well, and thus commenced to shout in front of Betsie's father's door:

"Father-in-law! father-in-law! I should like something to eat." The man

got angry, and called out to his daughters; "Give something in a broken

plate to that ugly frog to gnaw." "Father-in-law! father-in-law! this

won't do for me; I want some roast meat on a tin plate," retorted the

frog. "Give him something on a tin plate then, or else he will cast a

spell on us," said the father. The frog began to eat heartily, and,

having had enough, again commenced to croak: "Father-in-law!

father-in-law! I want something to drink." "Give him some slops in a

broken pot," said the father. "Father-in-law! father-in-law! I won't

have this; I want some wine in a nice tumbler." "Give him some wine

then," angrily called out the father. He guzzled up his wine and began

again: "Father-in-law! Father-in-law! I would like to go to sleep."

"Throw him some rags in a corner," was the reply. "Father-in-law!

father-in-law! I won't have that; I want a silk bed," croaked the frog.

This was also given to him; but no sooner has he gone to bed than again

he began to croak, "Father-in-law! father-in-law! I want a girl,

indeed." "Go, my daughter, and lie by the side of him," said the father

to the eldest. "Father-in-law! father-in law! I don't want that, I want

another." The father sent the second girl, but the frog again croaked:

"Father-in-law! father-in-law! I don't want that, Betsie is the girl I

want." "Go, my Betsie," said the father, quite disheartened, "else this

confounded monster will cast a spell on us." So Betsie went to bed with

the frog, but her father thoughtfully left a lamp burning on the top of

the oven; noticing which, the frog crawled out of bed and blew the lamp


The father lighted it again, but the frog put it out as before, and so

it happened a third time. The father saw that the frog would not yield,

and was therefore obliged to leave his dear little Betsie in the dark by

the side of the ugly frog, and felt great anxiety about her. In the

morning, when the father and the two elder girls got up, they opened

their eyes and mouths wide in astonishment, because the frog had

disappeared, and by the side of Betsie they found a handsome Magyar lad,

with auburn locks, in a beautiful costume, with gold braid and buttons

and gold spurs on his boots. The handsome lad asked for Betsie's hand,

and, having received the father's consent, they hastened to celebrate

the wedding, so that christening might not follow the wedding too soon.

The two elder sisters looked with invidious eyes on Betsie, as they also

were very much smitten with the handsome lad. Betsie was very happy

after, so happy that if anyone doubt it he can satisfy himself with his

own eyes. If she is still alive, let him go and look for her, and try to

find her in this big world.