Many, many years ago, when Krakow was still the capital of Poland,
there lived in the castle on the Wawel mountain King Krak with his daughter
Wanda. All the citizens in Krakow loved their kind-hearted King and the loving
Wanda. For many years everyone lived peacefully and provided for the well-
being of their town. Amongst them lived one of the cobbler's family, a capable
and hard-working apprentice by the name of Dratewka.
One day the in a cave in the Wawel mountains, an evil dragon had
settled. He had three heads and his body was covered in scales. When he
was angry he went into such a rage that the mountains shook and he breathed
fire and smoke from his mouth. He made the whole town afraid. In order to
calm him down the people put a sheep in front of his cave everyday. But this
was not enough for him. Once a year even a small girl had to be sacrificed.
Many of the citizens tried to fight against the dragon. However, no-one
was able to beat him. The council of elders spent days and nights trying to find
a solution but they couldn't find one. At long last there were no more girls left
in Krakow, only Princess Wanda. The dragon became more and more
impatient. Since there were no other girls to be found everyone knew that it
was the king's daughter's turn.
There was great mourning all over Krakow. The king announced to the
whole country that he was looking for a brave knight who could defeat the
dragon. Many courageous knights came and fought without success against
the beast. Most were killed in their fight. When all hope had been abandoned,
the cobbler's apprentice, Dratewka, appeared before the King. He asked for
permission to fight the dragon. The king listened and agreed to what he was
intending to do. The young man got to work on his plan straight away.
From the butcher he got himself a sheepskin. From all the citizens he
collected brimstone, salt, pepper and pitch. He filled the sheepskin with these
and sewed it up tightly so it looked like a real sheep. At night he put the
"sheep" in front of the entrance to the cave. The next morning the hungry
dragon came out of the cave and ate up the sheep straight away. Shortly
afterwards he felt a terrible burning all over his body. He tried to stop the
burning by drinking massive amounts of water. He drank so much that the bed
of the river Wisla could be seen. He carried on drinking until eventually he
exploded with an enormous bang. There was great joy throughout Krakow.
Dratewka married Wanda and they lived happily together for a very long time to come.