Stories & Sayings

The baker and the hermit: A moral tale

Contributed by Arab Educational Institute on 27.05.2009:

Once there was a very wealthy baker living in Jerusalem. As a widower, and without relatives, he daily handed out bread for free to a hundred worthy people known to be in need. He did this for many years. With Allah’s blessing, his undertaking went well. One day a holy hermit came from his cave in the mountains and visited the baker. The hermit told him that he had received a vision in which (...)

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The juice seller and the king

Contributed by Arab Educational Institute on 28.03.2009:

I will never forget my childhood. My grandfather taught me how to enjoy life, how to imagine, to learn from the past, how to gain more wisdom in life.I remember when I was seven or eight mum used to take us, my brothers and sisters, to my grandfather’s farm fields. There was a big room with a terrace and a well in front of the field that was 20 dunam large. This field had olive trees, grapes,(...)

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Bethlehem’s Religious Proverbs and Sayings

Contributed by Adnan Mousallem on 27.01.2009:


My Hometown

From: the personal website of Dr Adnan Musallem:

Bethlehem's Religious Proverbs and Sayings

The Late Dr. Issa Massou of Bethlehem and Bethlehem University

The amount of material ever written on the subject of religious folklore of the Holy Places in general, and that of Bethlehem in particular, is(...)

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Religious Folklore in the Bethlehem District

Contributed by Adnan Mousallem on 25.01.2009:

Stories of Places and Persons Connected with

Religious Folklore in the Bethlehem District


Website Dr Adnan Mousallem, Bethlehem University

Issa Massou§


Very little has been written on the subject of religious folklore of the Bethlehem area. Hence, the(...)

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Preface from Folklore of the Holy Land 1907

Contributed by S. Suleiman on 06.06.2008:

MY aim in this preface being to afford the untravelled reader of the following stories such a glimpse of the country and people which produced them as may render them intelligible, if not coherent, I shall begin with a glance at the past history of the Holy Land as illustrated in its present folk-lore.

Of Old Testament times the fellahìn have countless stories, more or less reminiscent(...)

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El Khadr in Ein Karem and Hebron

Contributed by S. Suleiman on 02.06.2008:

The "former" rains having failed during the months of November and December 1906, prayers for rain were offered up in all places of worship, Moslem, Jewish, and Christian. About that time the following tales were circulated at Jerusalem. A woman who had just filled her pitcher, drop by drop, from a scanty spring near Ain Kârim was suddenly accosted by a horseman bearing a long lance, who orde(...)

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The Tale of the Pilgrim Cat

Contributed by S. Suleiman on 02.06.2008:

A town cat, having destroyed almost all the mice and rats in the place, found itself forced, for lack of prey, to go into the fields and hunt for birds, mice, rats and lizards. In this time of need it thought of the following ruse. It stayed away for some weeks from its usual haunts, and returning, lay down in front of a mouse and rat warren, with a rosary round its neck; then, with its eyes (...)

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How the Cat and the Dog Became Enemies

Contributed by S. Suleiman on 02.06.2008:

THE dog and the cat were not always the enemies we now see them. There was once strong friendship between them. Their hostility arose from the following incident

Ages ago when the different kinds of animals in the world had their various offices and duties assigned to them, the dog and the cat, though classed amongst domestic animals, were exempted from drudgery, the former for his fid(...)

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A Folklore Sampler

Contributed by Artas Folklore Center on 27.04.2008:

By nature, stories and folktales change in each telling. Probably no Palestinian village has so many of its stories and folktales in written form, thus preserving for posterity the stories of preceding generations.. As a starting point for exploring Artas Folktales and stories, we've gathered a few items from;s main site submitted by various people.

The White Flowe(...)

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My Father Died Alone in Gaza

Contributed by National Council For Development NCD on 25.04.2008:

Subject: My Father Died Alone in Gaza by Ramzy Baroud

Weekend Edition

Apri1 5 / 6, 2008

My Father Died Alone in Gaza

There are No Checkpoints in Heaven

By Ramzy Baroud

I still vividly remember my father's face - wrinkled, apprehensive, warm - as he last wished me farewell fourteen years ago. He st(...)

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