A Story From: Iran
Read Time: ["6 to 10mins"]
For Ages: 8 to 10yrs.
The Wizard Khizr ~ Folktales Stories for Kids
THE KING OF PERSIA was troubled. His people cried out for hunger and the land had been parched for too long. Enemies pounded at their borders and bandits attacked their travelers. The king longed for a visit from the Wizard Khizr, a magical figure known to mysteriously appear at times of trouble to give comfort and guidance. “If ever there was a time for the Wizard Khizr to appear, this is it!” exclaimed the king.
Desperate, the king announced a proclamation. Anyone who could show him the Wizard Khizr would be richly rewarded with one thousand tumãns.
Now in the kingdom there lived a poor man who was beset by troubles of his own. He was very much in debt and worried that his family could never climb its way out of a life of hunger and poverty. When he heard the king’s announcement of the king, he came straightway to the palace.
“I will show you the Wizard Khizr,” declared the poor man, “though it may take some time.”
“How long?” said the king.
“Forty days,” said he, “but to complete the task I will need the thousand tumãns in advance.”
“Very well,” says the king. “Of course you realize that if you fail to show me the Wizard Khizr in forty days, you will lose your head.”
“I understand,” said the poor man. And so an agreement was drawn and signed. The king issued orders to release the money and the court attendants handed over the thousand tumãns.
The man returned home with a mixed heart. He paid back all his creditors and gave his wife the balance for the family. Then he settled down as best he could for what remained of the forty days.
On the morning of the fortieth day, he said to his wife, “My dear, today is the day I will be executed.”
“Alas!” she cried. “It must be so.”
At the palace, the poor man was greeted with much fanfare and was quickly ushered to the king. “Now,” boomed the king to the man who stands before him in his great hall, “I have waited long enough. The forty days expires today. Where is Khizr?”SOURCE:
Retold by Elaine L. Lindy. ©2006. All rights reserved.
tumãn- former Persian coin equivalent to about one dollar.
Some Muslim scholars think that the Khizr is a prophet who is the same character as Elijah in the Bible. Others say he wasn't a prophet at all, but only a wise and saintly man who was wazir (vizier) to a great conqueror who lived in the time of Abraham. Khizr was known to wear green clothes, and the word for "green" in Arabic is nearly the same as his name.