There was once a rather amusing King. It was very unusual. No matter how many times he told people to do things, they would never obey him. As he was also a peaceful and just King, who didn’t want to punish or imprison anyone, he ended up with no authority. So the King decided to get a great wizard to come up with a magic potion which would get people to obey him. The old wizard – the wisest man in the kingdom – cast a thousand spells, and made just as many potions. They produced some interesting results, like a fighting snail, or a dancing ant… but he couldn’t find a way to get people to obey the King.
A young man, who was passing through, heard about the problem, and went quickly to the palace, telling the King that he knew the solution. The King seemed excited, and the young man gave him two small pieces of parchment, with incredibly colourful writing on them.
e solution. The King seemed excited, and the young man gave him two small pieces of parchment, with incredibly colourful writing on them.
“Please, Apolonio, come here and let me see that magnificent turkey.”
Apolonio, surprised by the King’s kindness, and never having heard him say ‘please’ before, approached the King. The King, and everyone else there, was surprised by how effective the spell had proven. The King, after looking at the turkey with little interest, said,
-“Thank you, Apolonio, you may go.”
And the servant left, smiling. It had worked! And, even better, Apolonio remained under the King’s power, just as the young man had said! The grateful King, festooned the young man with riches, and the young man decided to continue on his journey.
But before he left, the old wizard approached him, asking him where he had gotten his extraordinary magical powers, begging the man to share them with him. The young man, who was nothing more than an intelligent teacher, told the wizard the truth:
“My magic does not lie in those worthless parchments which I wrote on arriving at the palace. I got my magic from school as a child. My teacher constantly repeated that with good manners you could get anything. And he was right. Your good King only needed good manners and some politeness to get just what he wanted.”
The wizard, understanding the truth of this, spent that night destroying all his contraptions, and magical junk. He replaced them with a good book on manners, ready to continue educating his blunt and impolite King.