Thursday, April 18, 2013
P is for the Pirate Princess
Today's princess is brought to you from the amazing world of Hasidic Jewish folkales - particularly, from this very entertaining book.
I love this story because, although it does present certain classic elements, it generally does not follow the fairy tale course. It is full of miscommunications, misunderstandings, and good old-fashioned screw-ups on everybody's part. The lovers, princess and prince (princess being the daughter of an emperor!) are destined for each other since before they were conceived by their parents, yet they have to go through hell to get to the happy ending. They lose each other, they find each other, they lose each other again. Not everything is neatly arranged.
Okay, so technically this lady is not a pirate per se, but she does steal more ships during the course of the story than Captain Jack Sparrow in three movies, so I decided she does qualify. Deal with it. Also, even though most versions of the story are titled "The King and the Emperor" many popular re-tellings call it "The Rebel Princess" or "The Pirate Princess" (see the story collection above).
Hasidic folktales are amazing. They are beautiful, full of adventure and miracles and vivid images. Once at the Sharing the Fire storytelling conference I have heard master storyeller Rabbi Rachmiel Tobesman tell a full hour of these tales. It was magical.