Banta and the Princess

Banta dan Sang Putri >> Edisi Bahasa Indonesia

Folklore from Aceh

BANTA Berensyah was a good young man. He lived with his old mother. They were poor. Banta worked for his rich uncle. He never complained although his uncle only gave him little money for his job. His uncle was a rich merchant He had a big ship to cruise the ocean. However, nobody liked him. His uncle was stingy. He was also rude, he never said nice things to people.

Unlike his uncle people loved Banta very much. He was helpful and kind. He always helped people. And, there is one thing that people admired from Banta. He was skillful playing a flute. It was so great that people were so happy to hear him playing the flute.

Banta was in love with the princess. She was very beautiful. She just made an announcement, She would marry a man who could give her a cloth made from gold. Banta heard the competition and he wanted to join it. He wanted to marry the princess. Banta told his mother about the competition.

"What will you do, Son? A cloth from gold is so expensive, how will you get it?"

"I don't know, Mother. Just pray for me, and I will find a way."

Banta prayed to God. He asked God to show him away how he could get a cloth from gold. In one night, he had a dream. An old man told him that he prepared a big leaf. He would use the leaf to cross the sea. The old man told him that he had to head north and land in a big island.

Banta woke up from his sleep. He was sure that the dream was a guidance for him. He went to the jungle and looked for the biggest leaf. When he found it, he folded and put it in his bag. Then he told his mother that he would get golden cloth.

Banta went to his uncle, "Uncle, may I join you in your ship. I want to head north."

"But I will head south," said his uncle.

'"Ihat's OK, Uncle. I will drop in the middle of the ocean and continue my journey by myself."

The uncle completely did not understand.

However, he still let him join his big ship. When they were in the middle of the ocean, Banta got off the ship. He used his big leaf as his 'ship'. Amazingly, the leaf worked well. He then went north.

When Banta landed in an island he was looking for a great weaver. He looked for a weaver who could make him a cloth from gold. It was not easy for him to find the great weaver. Finally, he found one!

"How will you pay me?" asked the weaver.

"May I play the flute for replacing the payment? I guarantee you will like it " said Banta.

"Hmm... OK let's try now."

Banta then played his flute. It was so great. The weaver had never heard a great sound like that before. When Banta finished playing, the weaver happily made him the cloth from gold.

Banta was so happy. He brought the cloth home. He wanted to show it to his mother first before he gave it to the princess. He used his big leaf as his ship to cross the sea.

Sadly, when he was sailing in the ocean, he met his uncle with his big ship. His uncle saw the golden cloth and grabbed it. He also wanted to marry the princess. He went to the palace and left Banta alone with his big leaf.

When Banta arrived at the palace, the wedding party of his uncle and the princess was about to start.

Suddenly, an eagle flew and screamed 'The golden cloth belongs to Banta!'

The eagle kept on screaming that the king finally asked the uncle. The uncle finally admitted that he stole, Banta's golden cloth. The king was angry. He asked the uncle to leave the palace. And how about Banta? Well, he married the princess and lived in the palace. He also asked his mother to stay in the palace. They lived happily ever after. ***

Aceh Traditional Wedding Costumes

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