Korean Folk Tales: Imps, Ghosts and Fairies | Annotated Tale

COMPLETE! Entered into SurLaLune Database in October 2018 with all known ATU Classifications. Many of the tales in this collection included introductory and/or end note text which has been moved to the Notes section for each tale.

Renowned Maing, The

MINISTER of State Maing Sa-song once upon a time, dressed in plain clothes, started south on a long journey. On the way he was overtaken by rain, and turned into a side pavilion for rest and shelter. There was a young scholar already in the pavilion by the name of Whang Eui-hon, who with his two hands behind his back was reading the pavilion inscription board, on which verses were written. Long he read and long he looked about as though no one else were there. At last he turned to the old man, and said, "Well, grand-dad, do you know the flavour of verses like these?" The famous Minister, pretending ignorance, arose and said, "An old countryman like myself, could you expect him to know? Please tell me the meaning."

               Whang said, "These verses were written by the great men of the past. What they saw and experienced they wrote down to inspire the souls of those who were to come after them. They are like pictures of sea and land, for there are living pictures in poetry, you know."

               The Minister said, "Indeed, that's wonderful; but if it were not for men like yourself how should I ever come to know these things?"

               A little later came pack-horses loaded with all sorts of things; servants and retainers, too, a great company of them, tent poles, canvas packs and other equipment, a long procession.

               Whang, surprised by this, made inquiry, when, to his amazement, he learned that the old man was none other than Maing Sa-song. Unconsciously he dropped on to his knees in a deep and long obeisance. The Minister laughed and said, "That will do; there is no difference in the value of mere men, they are high or low according to the thoughts that prompt them, but unfortunately all are born with a proud heart. You are not a common scholar, why, therefore, should you be so proud to begin with and so humble now?" The Minister took him by the hand, led him to his mat, made him sit down, comforted him and sent him away.

                Yi Ryuk.

Bibliographic Information

Tale Title: Renowned Maing, The
Tale Author/Editor: Ryuk, Yi
Book Title: Korean Folk Tales: Imps, Ghosts and Fairies
Book Author/Editor: Bang, Im & Ryuk, Yi
Publisher: E. P. Dutton & Co.
Publication City: New York
Year of Publication: 1913
Country of Origin: Korea
Classification: unclassified

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