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Book No. 115


To first story in the book press: 4947

To last story in the book press: 4986

Slavonic Fairy Tales

Naaké John T.

Naaké John T., Slavonic Fairy Tales, London, 1874

SLAVONIC

FAIRY TALES.

 

COLLECTED AND TRANSLATED FROM

THE RUSSIAN, POLISH, SERVIAN, AND BOHEMIAN.

 

BY

 

JOHN T. NAAKÉ,

Of the British Museum

 

WITH FOUR ILLUSTRATIONS.

 

Henry S. King & Co.,

65 CORNHILL, AND 12 PATERNOSTER ROW, LONDON.

1874

PREFACE

It is no longer thought needful to apologise for a collection of folk-tales. They are not even the peculiar property of the children any longer; the gravest scholars do not disdain to examine and discuss them, and all parts of the world, from Mongolia to Cafraria, are ransacked to produce them. Here is presented a little gathering of these wild flowers, plucked not for their scientific interest, – though that they possess, – but for the wild fresh perfume that clings about them.

Poland, Russia, Bohemia, and Servia have contributed stories to this little collection. It may be said that the Bohemian tales, perhaps through the genius of the poets who have preserved them, have, in their original form, more art, more grace, more completeness of outline, than the others. Those from Poland reflect the passive virtues and genial warmth of the peasants whose lives they illustrate. A greater simplicity, amounting even to childishness, will be found to characterise the Russian stories. Those from Servia are in some features unique, and may be found the most interesting of the series. The exalted imagination of the Servian race is allied with keen and homely sense, and their vigorous and beautiful romances called forth the admiration of Goethe. It is hoped that these varied characteristics may not wholly have evaporated in translation.

The translator makes no claim to the honour of having collected these stories. He has selected his materials from the Polish of K. W. Wojcicki; from the Russian of M. Maksimovich, B. Bronnitsuin, and E. A. Chudinsky; from the Bohemian of K. J. Erben, M. Mikssichek, J. K. Z. Radostova, and J. K. Tyl; and lastly, from the Servian of W. S. Karajich. Wojcicki's work has appeared in German, and the Servian collection has been excellently rendered in the same language by the daughter of W. S. Karajich. But none of these tales, as far as the translator is aware, have hitherto appeared in an English dress.

J. T. N.

LONDON, April, 1874.

https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Slavonic_Fairy_Tales

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