Tales that are told around the open fire
Southern Africa has a long history of people and wild animals living side-by-side, and folklore plays an important part in all the major cultures of the region. These stories are of deep interest and value to South Africans, and hopefully will be of some value to those of you who have either an interest in animals or who appreciate the folklore of other countries.
This was a way in which these people passed on life lessons to their children and to one another, teaching good moral values.
We have selected a few of our favourites below for you to enjoy too.
When The Cheetah Cried
One day, a hunter left his village to go and find food for his family. He passed a small clearing, and noticed a young Impala who had strayed away from the main herd...
Why Lion Hunt Buffalo
Why The Rhino Is Bad-Tempered
In the Beginning, the Giraffe had a normal neck, and looked a bit like a large Antelope...
Why The Hippo Scatters His Dung
Why The Snake Can Shed His Skin
In The Beginning, Man struck a deal with The Creator that he would not die. Instead, when he got old, The Creator would send down a new skin for Man to put on, which would make him young again...
Why The Elephant Has A Trunk
How The Elephant Got His Tusks
The Warthog used to have beautiful long ivory tusks, but his friend, the Elephant, only had small, curling tusks...
Why The Warthog Is So Ugly
The Waterbuck's White Circle
One very dark night, a mother Waterbuck was grazing near the Tribesman's wooden hut with her young calf. The Tribesman had been very busy that day, painting his hut white, and had left the tin of white paint outside his door ready to continue his work the next morning...