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African Proverb

African Proverb
Distance diminishes the elephant

Hunters Attack Cowards Tell the Story

The myth story Hunters Attack Cowards Tell the Story retells why the true story of the coward was hidden and the hunter real death story is a secret.

Hunters Attack Cowards Tell the Story Myth


Hunters Attack Cowards Tell the Story

Bahasa had two sons; Okob and Elple, the younger one, Elple caused his father much trouble because he not only was lazy, disobedient and unruly, but he also was jealous of his older brother. Okob was the most famous hunter in the family skilled at stalking and killing every large dangerous animal that crossed his path in the forest.

One day after Okob stalked, caught and killed a large antelope he became very thirsty and wanted to go and drink water. He said to his little brother "Elple, you and your wife look after the antelope, I am going to get a drink of water. Don't you eat any; we will bring the meat back to the village for the Tihi festival tonight."

"Very well, big brother Okob." said the younger while lazily lying under an Ikro Tree with his equally lazy wife.

Okob went to the river and Elple quietly removed a rock on which Okob had to step to reach the bank on his return. Okob returned, but could not ascend the bank because of the missing stone. "Elple, my little brother, help me," Okob shouted.

Elple and his wife laughed at Okob and then ate greedily of the prized antelope.

Hours later after the antelope was eaten and Elple rested he finally answered, "Yes, big brother Okob, I will let down a rope and then you can climb up."

Elple whispered to his wife, "Give me one of the old, thin hide ropes." Then aloud he added, "Wife, give me one of the strong, buffalo ropes, so Big brother Okob won't fall."

His wife gave him an old rotten rope and they gradually let the rope down to pull Okob up but when he neared the edge Elple gave the rope a jerk. It broke and down Okob began to roll; in fact he rolled the whole way down, and finally lay at the foot near the river.

Elple howled, cried, and shouted: "Wife, why did you give me such a bad rope that caused Big brother Okob to fall?"

Okob heard the commotion and roared, "Elple, help me to climb up."

"Big brother Okob, I will give you a stronger rope!"

Whispering again to his wife, "Give me one of the old, thin ropes," and shouting aloud again, "Give me a strong, rope, wife, that will not break!"

Elple gave out the old rope, and when Okob had nearly reached the top, he cut the rope through and Okob began to roll to the bottom of the riverbank once again.

Elple again shouted, "Wife, why did you give me such a rotten rope? Didn't I tell you to give me a strong one?" Okob roared, "Elple, help me instantly or you will be sorry."

"Wife," Elple said aloud, "give me now the strongest rope you have," but then whispered to her, "Give me the worst rope of the lot."

Elple again let down a rope, but just as Okob reached the top, Elple gave a strong tug and broke the rope. Okob rolled down the side of the hill, lay there yelling in pain, and died a slow death.

Elple laughed and yelled down to the riverbank, "Big brother Okob, have you hurt yourself? Are you in pain? Wait a while; I am coming to help you."

Elple and his wife slowly walked back to the village where the family awaited the return of Okob and mountains of fresh meat from his hunting.

Father Bahasa asked his younger son, where is your brother? Why has he not returned with you and your wife?

Elple fell on his knees at his father’s feet and wept aloud saying” I do not know. He and I were not at the same place," he of course lied. Therefore, the true story of this jealous younger son was never found out leaving a grieving father and mother to forever wonder about the fate of their beloved son, Okob.

Okob at the riverbank


African Proverbs about not heeding your older brother’s counsel:

A person who is not disciplined cannot be cautioned.

A fool has many days.

A log in the river will never be a crocodile.

Two bulls can’t stay in the same kraal.

You cannot use a wild banana leaf to shield yourself from the rains and then tear it to pieces later when the rains come to an end.

If you refuse the elder’s advice you will walk the whole day.



Folklore storytelling is the most ancient art form of the African Community.


Time and effort must be given to becoming an African folklore storyteller, just as any artist must give time and effort to developing their skill.


African folklore is as old as Africa herself with a deep appreciation for antiquity expressed in artistic form.


More short folklore stories from Africa to make you fall in love with myths and legends again from the motherland.
  1. Why the bunny rabbit has wiggly slits for a nose
  2. Love Takes No Less Than Everything Marriage Folklore
  3. Hunters Attack Cowards Tell the Story
  4. One Do Wrong All Get Punished
  5. Mighty Little Hedgehog
  6. Blackman and White Snake Folklore Story
Chic African Culture and The African Gourmet=More African Proverbs

More African Myths

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Being African in America I have grown up learning about different ethnic cultures. My mother is a historian of African culture and history and her influence expanded my activities to several best-selling cookbooks, magazine columns, self-branded products, and a popular African culture and food blog.

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Elegant but earthy The African Gourmet and Chic African Culture highlights African culture, food recipes, modern and ancient history.

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