shoemaker, money, poor, rich
Story, Tale, Legend, Folktale, Myth,
Fable, Learning, Teaching
He could not sing merrily now.
Whenever he thought of the money bag,
he became uneasy and unhappy.
The shoemaker and the
Once there lived a rich merchant
and a poor shoemaker in the same house. The merchant occupied
the second floor, and the shoemaker lived and worked in a small
room on the first floor.
The shoemaker was one of the
happiest persons on earth. He worked from morning till night,
singing merrily. His heart was filled with joy, whenever he
looked at the boots and shoes to be repaired.
Now the merchant upstairs was so
rich that he hardly knew how much wealth he had. He was always
counting over his gold and silver coins far into the night. Even
in bed his uneasiness about his riches kept him awake when at
last he had been asleep for an hour or two, up came the song of
the happy shoemaker, who was an early riser.
It continued all day and was a
trouble to the merchant day by day the merchant grew more and
more tired through want of sleep he asked a wise friend of his
how he could put an end to the shoemaker's song.
¡°Well, if I were you, I would
give the shoemaker a hundred pounds,¡± answered his friend. ¡°You
are rich enough to do that, I suppose. Ask for nothing in
return. Simply give the money. ¡±The merchant readily followed
When the shoemaker opened the bag
that had been sent by the merchant, he was amazed to find
shining coins. ¡°I must hide this from the eyes of my neighbors.
If they see it, they will think that I have stolen it,¡± he
thought. ¡°I will keep it away even from my wife.¡±
So he hid the bag of money under
the floor. From then on he avoided his neighbors as much as he
could. His wife who had been the best companion to him, became
troublesome now his mind was too much set on the money bag to
attend to his work with diligence. He could not sing merrily
now. Whenever he thought of the money bag, he became uneasy and
At length one day his wife said
to him in tears, ¡°Dear husband, what makes you so sad and
uneasy? All our neighbors say you have changed. I wish you were
as good and gentle as before.¡± He was so sorry for her that he
told her everything.
¡°We were happy before the
merchant gave us the money, ¡± said his wife, when she heard the
story. ¡°We have good health. We have plenty of work to do. What
more do we need? Send the money back to the merchant, and the
happy life that was once ours will return to us.¡±
The shoemaker agreed and went to
the merchant to return the bag of money. ¡°Sir,¡± he said, ¡°let me
return this to you. By giving this to me, you have spoiled my
happy and easy life. So I want to have it back by returning your
Merry song was again heard all
over the house. He was as happy as he had ever been.
1. Why did the merchant
give the shoemaker a hundred pounds?
2. What happened after the
shoemaker received the money?
3. Why did the shoemaker
decide to return the money to the merchant?
4. Can you live happily if
you are poor?