Top 5 Folk tales about the “The Hare” – a cunning and deceitful character

In folk and fairy tales around the world the hare is portrayed as a cunning and clever character.

Sometimes, as far as I know, especially in African stories, his wittiness is mixed with a vicious deceitfulness (like in “The hare and the quail” or “Sympathy killed Mr. Kapangula” on

Without further ado, here are my five favorite stories about “The hare”:

5. How the Hare deceived the Tiger

This is a story of Shan folk lore. The Shan people live in the area of modern day Myanmar as well as Thailand or Laos.

In the “How the Hare deceived the tiger”, the hare proves that though small she (yes – the hare is translated as a woman here) was full of wisdom, and although the tiger was bigger, stronger, and fiercer than she, yet she, through her wisdom, was able to deceive him and lure him into a trap.

4. The Adventures of Kintaro, the Golden Boy

In this beautiful story our friend Long-ears is not the main character, but only a retainer of Kintaro, the Golden Boy. If you ever wondered how a wrestling match between a hare and a monkey would look like, it’s best to read “The Adventures of Kintaro”.

3. The Hare and the Tortoise

An all time classic by the famous Aesop. If you want to learn more about the “The Life of Aesop” check out what George Fyler Townsend wrote about him.

In this story the Hare, for a change, doesn’t get his way, but is too overconfident.

2. The Story of Hare

The “Story of Hare” is a crazy African story with quite some unnecessary bloodshed featuring an “Inkalimeva”, a type of fabulous animal.

1. The Origin of Death

Here is yet aAnother African tale.

Do you know why we have to die? No? Do you at least know why the hare’s nose is slit? Also no?

Read “The Origin of Death” and find out!

Bonus tale

When I posted my Top 5 List of “Stories about the Hare” my friend Dyna was inspired to put out another of her translations on Therefore as a bonus or memorable mention I am also happy to share with you “The greedy Hare”. Do I feel sorry for the hare now? Kind of, but at least for once he got what he desserved.

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3 Responses

  1. February 12, 2019

    […] When it comes to African folk tales I don’t even know where to start. Well, actually I do: The Jackal’s bride is a good starting point. If you like it, also check out since Dyna has put together plenty of stories with hunger as a main theme, such as The hare and the quail or Hyena and Hare as friends. Talking about the Hare, I have also got a Top 5 List of Stories about the Hare. […]

  2. May 17, 2019

    […] I love the tale since it also reveals an interessting detail about one of the most famous characters in folk tales, who I devoted the Top 5 tales about the hare. […]

  3. April 16, 2020

    […] As a frequent reader, you might also remember that the rabbit or hare is a prominent character in folk- and fairy tales, often a cunning and deceitful character. For more see read our collection about the Top stories about “The Hare”. […]

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