Jamaican Stories

Week 8: African Traditions - Assignments - Reading - Resources - Images

Man is Stronger (Simeon Falconer, Santa Cruz Mountains)

Reading time: 3 minutes. Word Count: 300 words

This story is somewhat similar to an Aesop's fable that is about a fox and the lion's encounter with an armed man. This story is more elaborate, and it is about the lion and the tiger.

The Lion and the Tiger were very good friends. Tiger says, "No one beat us in strength!" Lion said, "No, my friend, somebody that's stronger than we. Tiger said no, no, he cannot believe that.

Lion said there was a little something called "Man" that was stronger. So Tiger says he will have to find that something called 'Man."

And he go hunting the Man and he buck up Mr. Ram-goat and he ask him if him name "Man". Goat says yes. And he asked him if the two things he had up here called "gun". And he asked him if that long scat he have on belly, called "ram-rod." And he asked him if that bag he had, called "shot-bag." And Goat said yes. And Tiger walk up and lick him flat on the ground. Goat holla "Wi-i! wi-i-i!" And Tiger went back to Lion and say he find something called "Man" and single lick he lick him, fa' dead. Lion say, "No, me friend! dat no 'Man', for Man have two feet an' dat you tell me have four legs." Tiger say will have to go back again find Man, for he bound to have that something called "Man".

And he went out again seeking after "Man", and a Hunter was out. And he saw the Hunter and he said, "Now this yeah mus' Man!" And so him gwine up to de man, de Hunter aiming for him with the gun, and ask if him name "Man". And the Hunter drive at him with the gun. And he run back to Lion and could only say, "I find 'Man' an' him single answer him answer me, blood fly all t'ru me body!" and him dead. Lion says, "I tell you; you no believe me; but you believe me now!"'

Questions. Make sure you can answer these questions about what you just read:

  • what did Lion tell Tiger about Man?
  • why did Tiger think that Goat was a man?
  • what happened to Lion when he met a man?

Source: Jamaica Anansi Stories by Martha Warren Beckwith (1924). Weblink.

Modern Languages / Anthropology 3043: Folklore & Mythology. Laura Gibbs, Ph.D. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License. You must give the original author credit. You may not use this work for commercial purposes. If you alter, transform, or build upon this work, you may distribute the resulting work only under a license identical to this one.
Page last updated: October 9, 2004 12:52 PM