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Philippine Legend: The Legend Of the Guava

Updated on January 21, 2017
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When Precy is not recounting the legends of plants and animals, you can find her watching her favorite series on The Filipino Channel.

Learn the story behind how the guava got its crown.
Learn the story behind how the guava got its crown. | Source

Philippine culture is rich in folklore. One tale I enjoyed during my childhood was the legend of the guava fruit, which comes with a moral lesson. A guava tree or fruit is called bayabas in Tagalog, which is the language of the Philippines.

The story goes like this:

A long time ago, there's a king who ruled a rich, prosperous island. He had all the things a king could ever ask for: the power, the wealth, and all the delicious foods one could only imagine.The king's name was King Barabas.

King Barabas is a rude king and overweight, indulging himself to all the foods available, hesitant to share. And his castle is starting to become filthy. He would spend most of his time sitting and eating with his bare hands. As he eats, he drips food on the floor and smile mockingly at the people around him, specially his servants.

People in the kingdom would approach with requests for his help, but he would always refuse. As he neglected his kingdom, people started to complain and starve.

After some time, an old hunched-back woman showed up at the castle begging for food while the king was eating. The old lady asked for food as she was starving.

"Go away! I don't have anything to give. Can't you see I'm eating?" said the king.

"Please, my king, " said the old woman. "I'm asking for anything, anything you could give me as I am so hungry. Even a little piece of bread or fruit would do."

"Get out at once! You disgust me," the king belittled the old beggar.

The old woman stood up straight, casting aside her stooped posture. "I've heard much about you and how your kingdom is suffering." The tone of her voice had changed. It was no longer the voice of a weak, old woman. "I asked for help, and you shoved me away. You have a lot for yourself, but when I only asked for a little food, you belittled me. You are selfish. No one loves you and no one will remember you when you are gone!"

And the beggar disappeared.

After a few more days, the king slowly weakened and became sick. No one knows what's wrong with him. He got weaker and weaker and lost much weight. He looked older than his age. Soon after that, the king died. As unfortunate and unexpected as it was, no one cried and nobody showed up at the king's burial. He died alone.

And where the king was buried, his people noticed a strange plant growing, a plant they had never seen before. The plant soon grew into a tree, which bore rounded fruits that turned yellowish when ripe.

People also noticed that the fruit seemed to have a crown as it develops, which reminded them of their selfish, arrogant king. The flesh of the fruit tasted a bit sour, just like the sour personality of the king towards them.

The people learned to eat the fruit, which helped them with starvation. And because the tree was from the grave of their King Barabas and it has crown just like their king, they named the tree after him: barabas, which in time they called bayabas.

The fruit is still called, as to this day, bayabas.

And although the guava may have came from the rude, selfish King Barabas, guava fruit is one of the fruits that offers many health benefits when consumed, the fruit is a good source of vitamin C. The leaves are made into tea and treats many diseases as well from a simple toothache, to treating diarrhea, lowering blood sugar, and many more. And it is used amongst young boys after their circumcision in the Philippines.

Or maybe it's the way of the late king to make up for the wrongdoings?

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    • profile image

      Venus 5 weeks ago

      Thank you

    • profile image

      Legendary Shan 2 months ago

      Thanks for this website and the legend. :D

    • profile image

      jepoyson itaok 2 months ago

      can someone give the setting of this it really helps

    • profile image

      HSISproject 3 months ago

      what is the insight of the story?

    • profile image

      Cockbait 3 months ago

      Hey thx for the legend I used it on a English project.

    • profile image

      Novelyn 3 months ago

      Thank you very much

    • profile image

      Trisha Barcoma 3 months ago

      Thank you for this website.. :-) It really help's me trough my research...And i really love this story..

    • profile image

      deathprovoke 3 months ago

      thank you .. you helped

    • profile image

      Erica Bongo16 3 months ago

      Thank you because I already completed my assignment

    • profile image

      PaoloCruz 3 months ago

      Thanks for sharing the legend, I actually uesd in my project

    • profile image

      edrienne 4 months ago

      i love the story and im glad im filipinno

    • profile image

      Anna Bua Wale 5 months ago

      Like the story so I take this for my daughters assignment. I love the story.

    • profile image

      jeff 6 months ago

      my name is jeff

    • profile image

      naina 7 months ago

      the story was really fantastic.i really loved it.

    • profile image

      Joshua Gabriel S.Arceo 7 months ago

      Good story.The moral lesson is do not be a selfish person and be a generous person....

    • profile image

      Ashleymamale29 8 months ago

      I loved the story.

    • profile image

      my namehaha 8 months ago

      what is the moral lesson?

    • profile image

      Rhea Theresa Boral 8 months ago

      The I s story is very interesting I love this.:D

    • profile image

      8 months ago

      ive done my assignment because of this

    • profile image

      kazim 9 months ago

      i loved it thank u so much!!!!

    • profile image

      Daisy - Hertfordshire England U.K 9 months ago

      It is better to give than to receive, with a good helpful heart toward the lesser ones, you will reap abundant blessing.

    • profile image

      jp rizal 10 months ago

      give us settings please :) ./.

    • profile image

      jane 11 months ago

      it teaches us a lesson that its not right to be selfish.it is bless to give.

    • profile image

      Mick 11 months ago

      We grow this Filipino fruit in our garden here in Australia it has a pain easing effect with my Cancer,Thank You for the Legend

    • profile image

      My name 12 months ago

      I wrote this in my own words and I read it to my class they all loved it

    • profile image

      Ram 12 months ago

      So.. cool!

    • profile image

      cane 12 months ago

      very nice legend

    • profile image

      Amber777 13 months ago

      nice nice nice legend

    • profile image

      HOKAGE 13 months ago

      How to donload the story

    • profile image

      ja 13 months ago

      what is problem

    • profile image

      BananaLover_02 14 months ago

      Two thumbs up! Great for Memorization

    • profile image

      yna kizzer :) .. 14 months ago

      Whats the moral lesson!!!

      So boring!!!!!

      But thats good...

    • profile image

      tricia 14 months ago

      what is the character,plot,conflict resolution,setting and theme

    • profile image

      gerelyn 14 months ago

      nice story!!!

    • profile image

      crisolo 14 months ago

      who is the author of this story

    • profile image

      kimberly may oquiana 14 months ago

      who wrote this story?

    • profile image

      Hhenbdn 15 months ago

      What is plot

    • profile image

      fuckme04 15 months ago

      who is the real author in the story

    • profile image

      Jenny 2 years ago

      What is the moral lesson

    • profile image

      Juel 2 years ago

      Who is the real author of this story?

    • profile image

      cj 2 years ago

      The moral lesson is .........think of it. .....

      But the legend is good....

    • profile image

      Angel 2 years ago

      what is the moral lessons?? and can you give the plot or summary of that Legend??

    • profile image

      kenneth 2 years ago

      it is very interesting legend i was very Impressed :)

    • profile image

      roller girl 2 years ago

      wheres the moral lessons

    • profile image

      Krysta belle 2 years ago

      Cute ng story but what is the moral lesson?

    • profile image

      amirah 2 years ago

      Verry nice story,,

      Ilike this legend

    • profile image

      Paula Andrea De Pedro 2 years ago

      I learn many moral values in this legend

    • profile image

      rhodora 2 years ago

      do unto others what you want them to do unto you;...

      respect and you will be respected.

      like in all other situations of life....

    • profile image

      MA. DANIELA G. JALEA 2 years ago

      Because of the King's selfishness the poor old and beggared woman damned him

    • profile image

      jester 3 years ago

      What is the moral lesson?

    • profile image

      jester 3 years ago

      This so short but i enjoy reading this legend.... :-) :-) B-)

    • precy anza profile image
      Author

      precy anza 4 years ago from USA

      Hi Cris :) Tank you for stopping by and enjoying the legend!

    • precy anza profile image
      Author

      precy anza 4 years ago from USA

      Glad you enjoyed the guava legend Tastiger04 :) I enjoy almost ripe guava fruit with vinegar and some salt, specially those big guava variety, as big as an apple actually. I think I was in early teen when I had one of those big ones. :)

    • tastiger04 profile image

      tastiger04 4 years ago

      This is great! I LOVE guava....it's the fruit I miss the most from living in Asia. I never heard this legend behind it, thanks for a fun read! Voted up and awesome! :)

    • precy anza profile image
      Author

      precy anza 5 years ago from USA

      Yes it is. This fruit is nutritious and is common around which is good as this makes it easy for people to find. I grew up around guava trees and the leaves are really useful too in cooking and medicine. :)

    • precy anza profile image
      Author

      precy anza 5 years ago from USA

      Guavas are good fruits. I used to pick guava fruits along with tamarind when I was a kid. I love it when almost ripe.

    • precy anza profile image
      Author

      precy anza 5 years ago from USA

      Thank you. This is one of the legend I had enjoyed reading in my grade school days.

    • precy anza profile image
      Author

      precy anza 5 years ago from USA

      Glad you liked the legend. I had spent quite some time eating guavas when I was a kid. I like it on either vinegar or salt :)

    • precy anza profile image
      Author

      precy anza 5 years ago from USA

      Oh yeah! You just made me travel back in time. I and everyone else in class seems to enjoy such classroom activities instead of lectures and recitations. ^-^'

    • precy anza profile image
      Author

      precy anza 5 years ago from USA

      Thanks. I love reading stories, legends, and even comic books when I was a kid. And this is one of those legend I can still remember :)

    • Vinaya Ghimire profile image

      Vinaya Ghimire 5 years ago from Nepal

      Interesting legend. I will remember this Philippine legend every time I'm eating guava in Nepal.

    • profile image

      charangel.............../// 6 years ago

      cute ng story.................................................

    • happypuppy profile image

      happypuppy 6 years ago

      Funny legend. I love guavas and now I know an interesting story. Thanks for sharing!

    • kerlynb profile image

      kerlynb 6 years ago from Philippines, Southeast Asia, Earth ^_^

      Awww, your hub reminded me of my elementary days,really! Back then, we would listen to our teacher who'd gamely tell us the legends of kasuy (cashew), lanzones, pinya (pineapple), etc. Good to know the legend of guava even if it's been so many years since elem :-D

    • Docmo profile image

      Mohan Kumar 6 years ago from UK

      Nice bit of local folklore. As with many such stories it is great to see parallels and archetypes reminding us of so many from different lands. Thanks for sharing!