The monkey and the crocodile


At times presence of mind pays well
Long, long ago, there lived a huge crocodile in the river Ganges. The river flowed through a dense jungle. On both sides of the river there stood tall jamun and other fruit trees. In one such tree there lived a big monkey by the name of Raktamukha. He ate fruits from the tree and passed his days happily jumping from one tree to another. Sometimes, he climbed down the tree; took a bath in the river and rested for a while on its bank.

One day, the crocodile came out of the river and sat under the big jamun tree in which the monkey lived. The monkey who was sitting high on a branch saw the crocodile taking rest under the tree. He became very eager to talk to the crocodile and cultivate a friendship with him.

"Since you're taking rest under the tree", said the moneky, "you're my guest. It's my duty to offer you food."

The monkey gave jamuns and other fruits to the crocodile to eat. The crocodile ate them and thanked the monkey for his hospitality.

The monkey and the crocodile talked together for hours and soon they became friends. They developed such friendship that neither of the two was happy to miss each other's company even for a single day. Early since morning, the monkey would start looking for the crocodile, and the crocodile would also swim up to the jamun tree as early as possible. They would sit together, have a hearty chat and the monkey would offer him the delicious jamuns. This became their daily routine.

One day, the monkey gave some fruits to the crocodile for his wife, as well. The crocodile took the fruits happily to his wife and also narrated the whole story to her.

The next day, the crocodile's wife said to her husband, "Dear, if these fruits are so tasty, then the monkey who eats these fruits must be ten times more tasty. Why don't you bring the heart of this monkey for my meals?"

The crocodile was shocked to hear these words from his wife. He said, "Darling, the monkey is my friend. It would not be fair to take his heart away from him."

"That means, you don't love me", said the crocodile's wife and began to weep.

"Don't weep, dear", said the crocodile. "I'll bring the monkey's heart for you."

The crocodile swiftly swam to the other bank of the river and reached the tree where the monkey lived.

"My wife and I invite you to our home for a dinner. My wife is very angry with me for not having invited you earlier," the crocodile said in a sad tone.

"But how will I go with you?" asked the monkey. I don't know how to swim."

"Don't worry", said the crocodile. "Just ride on my back. I'll take you to my house."

The monkey happily sat on the back of the crocodile and the crocodile started his journey in the water.

While in mid stream, the monkey became frightened to see the water all around him and asked the crocodile to swim at a slow speed so that he did not fall into the river.

The crocodile thought that he could reveal his real intentions to the monkey, since it was impossible for him to escape from the middle of the river. So he said to the monkey, I am taking you to my home to please my wife. She wants to eat your heart. She says that since you eat tasty fruits day and night, your heart must be ten times more tasty than those fruits."

The monkey was taken aback to hear these words. He had never expected this type of a request from a friend. He kept his mental cool and said wittingly, "Very well friend. It would be my privilege to offer my heart to your charming wife. But alas! you didn't inform me earlier, otherwise, I'd have carried my heart with me. Which I usually keep in the hollow of the tree."

"Oh!" said the crocodile, "I didn't think of it earlier. Now we'll have to go back to the tree."

The crocodile turned and swam back to the bank of the river where the monkey lived.

Upon reaching the bank the monkey jumped off the crocodile's back and quickly climbed up his home tree.

The crocodile waited for hours together for the monkey to return carrying his heart.

When the crocodile realised that the monkey was taking too long searching for his heart, he called him from the ground and said, "Friend, I believe, you must have found your heart by now. Now, please come down. My wife must be waiting for us and getting worried."

But the monkey laughed and said sitting at the top of the tree, "My dear foolish friend. You've deceived me as a friend. Can any one take out his heart and keep that in a hollow. It was all a trick to save my life and teach a lesson to a treacherous friend like you. Now get lost."

The crocodile returned home with his head bent down.

Panchatantra Stories

1. A poor brahmin's dream
2. Beware of mean friends
3. Brahmadatta, the crab and the snake
4. Courtesy
5. Dantila the trader and gorambha the sweeper
6. Death and lord indra's parrot
7. Dharambuddhi and paapbuddhi
8. Hello! cave
9. King chandra and the monkey chief
10. King nanda and vararuchi
11. Somilaka the weaver
12. The bad lady and the wolf
13. The bats
14. The bear and golu and molu
15. The bird with two heads
16. The brahmin and the delicious dishes
17. The brahmin and the diamonds
18. The brahmin and the snake
19. The brahmin and the three thugs
20. The bullock and the lion
21. The camel with a bell round his neck
22. The cat, the rat and the hunter
23. The clever jackal
24. The cow and the tiger
25. The crow and the monkey
26. The crow and the water pitcher
27. The cunning judge
28. The cunning snake
29. The devta and the weaver
30. The dhobi's donkey
31. The dog in a foreign country
32. The donkey and the cunning fox
33. The donkey and the leopard's skin
34. The donkey who sang a song
35. The fake king
36. The falcon and the crow
37. The fool and the crooks
38. The foolish jackal
39. The four foolish brahmins
40. The four friends and the hunter
41. The fox and the elephant
42. The frog and the serpent
43. The giant and the helpless brahmin
44. The giant and the horse thief
45. The golden bird and the king
46. The golden birds and the golden swans
47. The golden goats
48. The hermit and the jumping rat
49. The horse and the lion
50. The hunter and the doves
51. The jackal and the arrow
52. The jackal and the drum
53. The king and the parrots
54. The king cobra and the ants
55. The lapwings and the sea
56. The lion and the hare
57. The lion and the woodcutter
58. The lion's bad breath
59. The lioness and the young jackal
60. The little mice and the big elephants
61. The louse and the bed-bug
62. The marriage of a snake
63. The merchant and the barber
64. The merchant's son
65. The mice that ate balance
66. The mongoose and the baby in the cradle
67. The monkey and the crocodile
68. The monkey and the log
69. The monkeys and the red berries
70. The mouse and the bull
71. The old greedy crane
72. The old wise crow
73. The peacock and the fox
74. The potter's truth
75. The prince and the bear
76. The prince and the seedling
77. The rabbits and the elephants
78. The revenge of the elephant
79. The rich mohan and the poor sohan
80. The rotating wheel
81. The sage and the mouse
82. The shepherd and the wolf
83. The stag and his antlers
84. The talkative tortoise
85. The thief and the sanyasi
86. The thief, the giant and the brahmin
87. The trick of the crow
88. The useful thief
89. The village mouse visits town mouse
90. The visit of the swan
91. The wind and the sun
92. The wise crab
93. The wolf and the crane
94. The wolf and the lamb
95. Three fish and the fishermen
96. Two fish and a frog
97. United we stand: divided we fall
98. When the lion came back to life
99. Who will bell the cat
100. Why the owls became enemies of the crows

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