Latvian Foktales and the Hedgehog

Latvian Folktales, edited and translated by Aleksis Rubulis, has at least two hedgehog tales. The first, below, involves, in part, with the hedgehog making suggestions to God which leads to the creation of mountains. I have at least one more example of this in a database, but the data access page I use with it doesn’t appear to like the beta Internet Explorer I’m running.

The Hedgehog’s Garmet

After creating the world, God often walked around on it discussing various problems with his creatures. Once he came upon a hedgehog who complained, “God, the land is too big. We simply cannot inhabit all of it.”

“Do you have any suggestions?”

“Yes.Shrink it by making it wrinkle.”

God contracted the earth, and mountains originated.

“What reward do you want for your contribution?” God asked.

“Give me a garmet of gold,” the hedgehog replied.

God granted it. Soon the hedgehog felt uncomfortable, for gold attracted great crowds. He couldn’t find peace among people or animals. As a result, he apologized for his foolishness and asked God to grant him clothes that would keep all creatures from bothering him.

Since that time the hedgehog has worn needles.

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