Philippine Folktales, Myths and Legends
Home | Heavens | Earth | Water | People | Plants | Animals | Misc | Links | About


The First Garlic

There once lived a beautiful maiden whose mother arranged to be married to the son of one of the richest datus in the land. She was so lovely that a rival suitor murdered her fiance. That rival was, in turn, killed by the dead fiance's loyal slave.

As news of the double-deaths spread, the young maiden runs up a sacred mountain and implores Bathala to take her away so that her beautiful face will no longer cause any future killings.

She gets zapped by lightning.

Her mother buries her and grieves, watering her grave with tears.

One day, the mother sees some grass-like plants sprouting on top of her dead daughter's graves. Thinking it was some useless weed, she pulls it out and sees seeds that look like her dead daughter's teeth.

She hears a supernatural voice boom: "Those are your daughter's teeth."

She gives thanks, knowing this is Bathala's way of giving her something that will remind her of her daughter. She plants the seeds all over her land to spread the memory of her daughter, and that's how the garlic plant began.

Retold Stories Copyright © 2001-2005 by
Photographs Copyright © 1998-2005 by Manuel Viloria. All Rights Reserved.
Homepage globe is derived from the cover of The Mythology Class,
Copyright © 1999-2005 by Arnold Arre. All Rights Reserved.