Saturday, April 28, 2018

Y is for the Yellow Death (WTF Hungary - Weird Things in Hungarian Folktales)

Welcome to this year's A to Z Challenge titled WTF Hungary - Weird Things in Hungarian Folktales! You can find all other participating blogs on the A to Z Challenge main blog.

Yet another cheerful little folktale for the end of this series...

A man has three daughters, one spinning, one sewing, and one plucking feathers. He asks them to warm water and wash his feet. The first two refuse, but the youngest sets out to get fire from the neighbor (who is a witch). She encounters four knights in a row: A white one (death), a red one (red flame), a blue one (blue flame), and a black one (the devil). They tell her to go or to stay; eventually she makes up her own mind to go, and gets the fire from the witch.
When she gets home, she warms water, and starts washing her father's feet. She notices that they are yellow.

"Father, what yellow feet you have!"
"I have walked in many graveyards with them."

"Father, what yellow hands you have!"
"I have buried many people with them."

"Father, what yellow teeth you have!"
"The better you eat you with!"

And then the yellow death eats the girl.

Nope, I don't know what this is all about either, but Little Red Riding Hood has never been creepier.


  1. It sounds like an awful lot of trouble to take to light a fire for warm water. And usually the youngest daughter or son is the one who gets the happy ending! You're right, very strange indeed - and the witch just hands over the fire? No tasks?

    I do like that picture.

    Aussie Children's Writers: Y is for Erica Yurnken

  2. Well, by the letter 'Y' this is just the norm now, in keeping with much of Hungarian folklore. I'm almost blasé about the whole thing :-)

  3. Thanks to this tale I'll be implementing a new policy. All requestee's must show me the color of their feet before I agree to wash them. :-)

  4. Wow. ok. So thought the title was so cheery to start with, but the story delivers on it. Very little red riding hood, but even darker. If yellow can be dark. :)

  5. Well, I didn't see that coming.
    Maybe it's like yellow fever or something. Or a warning about people with liver failure? Either way, awesome post.

  6. What an abrupt ending. I'm not too sure what this story is supposed to mean.

    You Belong With Me by Taylor Swift

  7. That is indeed creepy! So for once the first two daughters had it right?
    Tasha's Thinkings - Movie Monsters

  8. So glad I'm not reading this one before bed again! Poor girl, just trying to be the good daughter, and that's what she gets? Boo.
    Jamie Lyn Weigt | Writing Dragons