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A Story From: Myanmar (Burma)
Read Time: ["6 to 10mins"]
For Ages: 8 to 10yrs., 12 to 14yrs.

A young man learns from his father-in-law how to turn dirt into gold.
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The story "The Old Alchemist" is based on a story of the same name from In the Ever After: Fairy Tales and the Second Half of Life, by Alan B. Chinen (Chiron Publications: Illinois, 1989) pp. 31-33.

Retold by Elaine Lindy. ©2000. All rights reserved. Posted with the kind permission of the copyright holders, Chiron Publications.


About the name of the country - Burma vs. Myanmar

Burma, the largest country in southeast asia, gained its independence from Britain in 1948. The civilian government was overthrown by a military coup in 1962 and again in 1988. The English-speaking name of the country was renamed Myanmar in 1989 by the military regime. However this proved politically controversial because the military government had not been legitimately elected and some governments contended that it did not have the authority to officially change the name in English. For example, the BBC and The Wall Street Journal use "Burma," and CNN and The New York Times use "Myanmar."