Two Miao lads who caught flat fish.

Told by Yang Xiu-gong.


This story begins with a variation on the theme of fish which turn into girls, but it is mainly concerned with another theme common in Miao songs, namely that of the rivalry between, in this case, the two friends. The younger is good, industrious and clever, the older, foolish, lazy and crafty.

The malicious treatment of the innocent, if not very bright, Chinese pig-drover, is hardly excusable, but remembering the ill-treatment the Miao constantly received at the hands of unscrupulous Chinese in the markets, it is at least understandable. The man down the pothole, could not have seen the pig man coming, but was alerted by his cries as he drove the animals along. Moreover, he would have known at once that these were pigs, and not cattle or sheep, because a different cry was used for each kind of animal.

Literal Transcription

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