The tale of Keloğlan and chickpeas

The tale of Keloğlan and chickpeas

Once upon a time a woman had a bald son. One day he found a chickpea while playing in the dirt, he took it and started to calculate: One chickpea will make ten chickpeas, ten chickpeas will make one scale, one scale will make ten scales, so he took the scale of chickpeas and stopped in front of the door of a rich man.

As the rich landlord was walking out the door, he saw Keloğlan in front of the door.

“What do you want?” he asked. Keloğlan asked the rich man:

I had five hundred camel loads of chickpeas. On the way to Aleppo, the ruins robbed us, took my chickpeas, killed my men, stripped me of my clothes, dressed me in bad clothes, blindfolded me and put me on a mountain. So I ran away and came here. The rich man immediately took him to his house, dressed him in a new layer of clothes; after sitting for five or ten days, Keloğlan said, “Let me go.” The rich man gave Keloğlan a horse.

Keloğlan set off on his journey. One day he reached Aleppo. In Aleppo, he received money from the merchants saying “I have five hundred camel loads of chickpeas coming”. Everyone started to praise this man, saying that he was rich like this and rich like that. One day the governor of Aleppo invited him to dinner. He accepted the invitation.

Keloğlan gave his servant twenty liras:

“Give this money to the governor’s servants,” he said. They went to the governor’s house with him in the front and his servant in the back. On the way back from the invitation, Keloğlan’s servant gave five liras to one of the governor’s servants, ten liras to the other, and two and a half liras each to the others. After a day or two, the governor sent a message. “If he takes my daughter, I will give her to him without any expense,” he said. And this one accepted. Their wedding lasted forty days and forty nights. Keloğlan took the governor’s daughter. One day the governor’s daughter asked her husband for five liras to go to the bathhouse, and no matter which merchants he called, no one gave him any money. During these times, Keloğlan became poorer and poorer; they did not even have any firewood. They were managing by cutting down the big tut tree inside their house. One day, while cutting the tree again, gold started to flow out of it. He immediately took a stick and hit the wall.

Hearing the sound of the stick, the governor rushed to his son-in-law’s house, asking, “What’s going on?” Keloğlan,

“They sold my five hundred camel loads of chickpeas and brought me this much gold in return, so I am fighting for it.” They collected the money and took him inside.

Keloğlan opened a store and started trading. He took out that single chickpea from its hiding place and said, “This chickpea made me rich” and put it in his mouth.

and He ate and drank and lived to his heart’s content.

Journal of Turkish Folklore Research, 1954, issue:54

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