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Greek Folk Stories
Old & New

by Mary Ziavras ©2012, Paperback, ISBN: 978-1-929-232-48-3, 132 pp

Author Mary Ziavras creates a delightful and heart-warming collection of folk stories for young and old, continuing a rich Greek tradition of oral storytelling.

Daughter of Greeks born in the Turkish Ottoman Empire, Ziavras offers a unique insight into the quaint customs and beliefs of  a society that was  annihilated after the expulsion of two million Greeks from Asia Minor from 1915-1922.

Evolved from first-hand accounts, her art of storytelling weaves humor and pathos, allowing the reader a glimpse of this vibrant society through windows to the past.


Click here to view author's website.

Preface ix

Introduction 1



The Borrowed Pot 9

Giorgio and the Quilt 13

The Veil 17

Petro and the Icon 21

The Kettle and the Candlesticks 25

Where’s the Cat? 31

The Dreaded Visit 37




New Stories

Vassili and His Sons 45

The Jar of Beans 51

Tamara, the Gypsy Girl 55

Jason and His Clothes 59

Aphrodite and Her Pig 67

The Thread to Success 71

Maroula’s Clothesline 79

Katina, the Coquette 87

The Patata in the Closet 93

The House on the Hill 99

A Tale of Love and Honor 107

Yanni and Ruben 117

The Moirai 121

Glossary 129

About the Author 131

“Mary Ziavras's collection puts us back in touch with folktales in all their playful, mischievous, and occasionally tragic suggestiveness. With artfully contrived artlessness, she reanimates the tales for modern audiences,   connecting readers, viscerally, to ‘once upon a time’.”

–Maria Tatar, Professor Chair: Folklore and Mythology, Harvard University


“woven with wonder, whimsy and magic, and the wealth of her Greek heritage…as rich as baklava!”

–Amy Friedman, author of Timeless Folktales from Around the World


“Ziavras will delight you, reaffirming the truths folktales have imparted since Aesop’s Fables.”

–Chris Farlekas, The Times Herald Record

Mary Ziavras is the daughter of Greeks born in the Turkish

Ottoman Empire at the turn of the 19th century who

escaped the Greek/Armenian Genocide and immigrated

to New York as refugees in 1916. She holds a Bachelor of

Science degree in Education from New York University, a

Masters in Special Education from Long Island University

and is retired from New York City's public school system.

Her poems have been published in The Merrimack Journal

and were prize winners at the Chelmsford Massachusetts

Public Library's Poetry Slam. Several poems and short

stories appear in Voices, an anthology published in 2010

by the Chelmsford Senior Center Writers. The illustrations

for this book were done in pen and ink.

Greek Folk Stories

  • Greek Folk Stories
  • Greek Folk Stories

Price: $18.00




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