In a bold declaration, Mr. Morris shamelessly declares that all the stories in his volume were willfully lifted from the anonymous legends of a dozen or more countries and freely adapted to suit his own purposes. He goes on to ""confess"" that he has filched only those tales which seemed ""more subtle and sophisticated"" in lieu of ""whimsier folklore"". At the risk of becoming an accessory to this ""crime"", the teenager who loved but left in childhood his collections of folk tales will heartily welcome this thin but rich volume designed for his reading level and enjoyment. The first story is reminiscent of the vicious circle, which finds the crocodile guilty of destroying her own eggs despite the seeming guilt of all the other animals. The ""triumph of medicine over madness"" occurs in the Siamese Pepper Cure, an ironic tale of crime without retribution. When the king of Wales can laugh at his own horse-shaped ears, his handicap no longer dominates his life. These are only a few of the provocative, sparkling stories one can find in an unusual collection.