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Panchatantra

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The tales of Panchatantra, perhaps, are the oldest stories known in the literature of India. The dates of the Panchatantra are not known and these tales are usually attributed to Vishnu Sharma.

The popular story about the origin of Panchatantra goes like this: Once there was a king who has three son who are dull and without any wit or wisdom. Worried about the wellbeing of his sons the king approaches a wise brahmin called Vishnu Sharma and prays him to impart wisdom into his sons. Since the songs of the king are dimwits, he chooses to pass the wisdom in the form of interesting fables. The stories narrated by Vishnu Sarma contains animals and birds and he makes them speak and behave like humans.

 

Panchatantra tells about five ways that help the human being succeed in life. Pancha means five and tantra means ways (or strategies or principles). Addressed to the king’s children, the stories are primarily about statecraft and are popular throughout the world. The five
strategies are:
•Quarrel among friends (mitra-beda)
•Gaining friends (mitra labha)
•Of crows and owls
•Loss of gains
•Imprudence (mindless action)

 

Panchatantra Tales 
First Strategy: The Loss of Friends
1The Loss of Friends
2The Monkey and The Wedge
3The Jackal and The Drum
4The Fall and Rise of A Merchant
5The Foolish Sage and The Jackal
6The Crafty Crane and The Craftier Crab
7The Cunning Hare and The Witless Lion
8The Bug and The Poor Flea
9The Story of The Blue Jackal
10The Camel, The Jackal and The Crow
11The Bird Pair and The Sea
12Tale of The Three Fish
13The Elephant and The Sparrow
14The Lion and The Jackal
15Suchimukha and The Monkey
16How a Sparrow Came to Grief
17The Foolish Crane and The Mongoose
18The King and The Foolish Monkey
Second Strategy: Gaining Friends
1Gaining Friends
2The Crow-Rat Discourse
3Meeting a New Friend
4The Hermit and The Mouse
5Shandili and Sesame Seeds
6Story of The Merchant’s Son
7The Unlucky Weaver
8The Rescue of a Deer
Third Strategy: Of Crows and Owls
1Of Crows and Owls
2Elephants and Hares
3The Cunning Mediator
4The Brahmin and The Crooks
5The Brahmin and The Cobra
6The Old Man, His Young Wife and The Thief
7The Tale of Two Snakes
8The Wedding of The Mouse
9Tale of The Golden Droppings
10Frogs That Rode a Snake
Fourth Strategy: Loss of Gains
1The Croc and The Monkey
2The Greedy Cobra and The King of Frogs
3The Lion and The Foolish Donkey
4The Story of The Potter
5A Three-in-One Story
6The Carpenter’s Wife
7The Price of Indiscretion
8The Jackal’s Strategy
Fifth Strategy: Imprudence
1Imprudence
2The Brahmani and The Mongoose
3The Lion That Sprang to Life
4The Tale of Two Fish and a Frog
5The Story of The Weaver
6The Miserly Father
7Tale of The Bird With Two Heads
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