A is for Anxious Aniello

We are pleased to participate in the A to Z Blog Challenge (http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com/). The Story Crossroads theme for this year is Dual Natures in Folktales Around the World – opposites, contradictions & paradoxes.

And we’ll admit now…there will be plenty of twin and celestial bodies stories with lightness and darkness. But this first one to kick off this challenge? Well…it was too fun to pass up.


From Sicily, Italy-

You know that largest island in the Mediterranean Sea? That Sicily. Though, any mention of “Sicily,” and I automatically think of “The Princess Bride” (book or movie). While Sicily is known for its beaches, there are no beaches in this story. Hmmm. Is that some sort of opposition or paradox? Anyways….

What is so fascinating? What dualities have surfaced?

We have two wizards. Not one. Two. As far as can be told, these wizards are not twins. Yet, they travel a lot together and are into cosplay. Or at least into dressing up as gypsies to fool others. Some – like the old man in the story – have the ability to see through their disguises. Thankfully, this old man warns Aniello.

Besides two wizards, we have two wives. Not at the same time. You could almost see these two women as night and day of each other and who Aneillo finds fascinating, kind, and wise.

50-word-or-less summary:

Aniello’s hen died. Two gypsies wished to buy hen. Aniello warned – really evil wizards! Learns of wishing stone in hen’s head. Wishes hen to revive, talk, give advice on wishes. Marries princess…tricked by gypsies/wizards with doll for stone. Wizards reverse fortune. Quest through Mice kingdom with answers. Re-marries hen-turned-maiden.

Finding the Story: 

“A Choice of Magic” by Ruth Manning-Sanders – found here

A very short version found on YouTube (audio only) – found here

Please share in the comments…or anything on your mind. While you enjoy this blog, Story Crossroads has year-round offerings.

As for our past A to Z Challenges…

While you enjoy this blog, Story Crossroads has been “dual” in our offerings of our hybrid summit & festival on May 9-12, 2022 – yes, in-person and virtual – and would be honored for you to join us. Explore the schedule and register here: http://www.storycrossroads.org/Festival

Thanks to funding from National Endowment for the Arts; National Endowment for the Humanities; Western States Arts Federation; Utah Division of Arts and Museums/Utah Legislature; Utah Humanities; Youth, Educators, Storytellers (YES); City of Murray; Zoo, Arts & Parks (ZAP) of Salt Lake County; Salt Lake City Arts Council; Clever Octopus, and 80+ businesses and individuals.

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5 thoughts on “A is for Anxious Aniello

  1. Fun theme. I love you present the premise, a micro summary, and reference where to find the story. Perfect! It’s hard to resist a story about a wishing stone in a hen’s head.

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