Sacred Texts  Legends/Sagas  Roma  Index  Previous  Next 
Buy this Book at

Gypsy Folk Tales, by Francis Hindes Groome, [1899], at

Questions of Date.

Sometimes, however, a date does seem to preclude the notion that the dissemination of this or that folk-tale can have been due to Gypsies. The 'Grateful Dead,' the first of our collection, is a case in point. The Turkish-Gypsy version is excellent--as good, indeed, as any known to me; but the story seems to have been current in England as early, at any rate, as 1420--the date assigned to the metrical romance of 'Sir Amadas.' Again, according to Mr. Jacobs' More Celtic Fairy Tales, p. 229, 'the most curious and instructive parallel to Campbell's West Highland tale of "Mac Iain Direach" [= our No. 75] is that afforded by the Arthurian romance of Walewein or Gawain, now only extant in Dutch, which, as Professor W. P. Ker has pointed out in Folk-Lore, v. 121, exactly corresponds to the popular tale, and thus carries it back in Celtdom to the early twelfth century at the latest.' Only, how from Celtdom has the story wandered to the Polish Gypsies of Galicia, whose tale of 'The Golden Bush and the Good Hare' (No. 49) is clearly identical?

Next: Indian Parallels