African Folktale King Akintunde the Spirit Catcher
King Akintunde the Spirit Catcher African folklore teaches ashes fly back in the face of those who throw them.
King Akintunde made up his mind to move his royal court to a new village. He found a piece of land that greatly pleased him high in the hills.
His nobles, however, did not want to move; some of them met together to make a plan which would force the King to change his mind.
They agreed to send four of the Kings ugliest servants to haunt the hill acting as if evil spirits so that the King would be afraid to build his new royal court. One noble sent a man with two flaming red eyes, another with big scars instead of ears, another a woman with blue skin and white hair with no teeth, and a fourth a man who was 8 feet tall with no nose.
When the King’s messengers arrived to survey the hill, they saw these strange evil spirits leaping about with torches in their hands, and shouting with one voice: “Ko si aye! Ko si aye!” No room! No room! They returned in terror to the King, and told him that evil spirits haunted the hill.
However, one of the royal advisers suspected a plot, and advised the King to send hunters to the hill to capture the evil spirits.
The King took this advice, and the hunters returned with the supposed evil spirits who were, of course, were the ugly servants. Instead of killing them, however, the King kept them hidden and invited all his nobles to a feast. After their bellies were full, the King gave each noble a calabash of palm wine by the hands of a servant.
To the horror of the four disobedient nobles, their palm wine was served one from his servant, the man with two flaming red eyes, another from his scared servant, and the others from the hands of the blue skin white haired woman and the 8 foot tall man with no nose!
Obviously, the plot had been discovered, and all four nobles expected to be put to death for opposing the King; but the wise Akintunde said no word about the matter, and the feast ended in silence.
Soon afterwards, the court moved to the new village on the hill without any resistance, and from this time on King Akintunde was known as the Spirit Catcher.
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