Once upon a time, a ragman found a badger caught in a trap. He took pity on the animal and set it free. Now this badger had magic powers and thought for long time badger had magic powers and thought for a long time about how to repay the man. Finally the badger turned itself into a beautiful teapot and slipped itself into the ragman’s bag.
When the ragman found the teapot, he was very puzzled as to how it had got into his sack. He decided to take it at once to the priests in the temple as a gift, so that they might always remember him in their prayers.
When, however, one of the priests put the teapot on the fire to boil some water, he heard it cry out. He immediately began to shout in terror; ‘The teapot is possessed!’
The other priests came running, but the teapot seemed to be boiling away in the normal fashion. However, the priest insisted on calling the ragman back and returning his teapot to him.
That night, the kind ragman was awakened by a tiny voice. When he looked around, he saw that the teapot now had the head, the tail and the paws of a badger.
‘Take me to the market,’ the teapot said to him, ‘and I will dance for you and make you a rich man.’
And thus it was. To see something that was half badger and half teapot, that danced by itself, was such an extraordinary sight, that people were willing to pay to witness it.
The ragman became so rich in this way that in a short time he had gathered enough money for his lifetime. After this, instead of going on to make even more money, the ragman decided that the least he could do for the teapot, to whom he owed so much, was to allow it to rest.
So, that the teapot might not fall into the hands of some more greedy person, he took it back to the temple where the priests again agreed to look after it.
From that day, a thousand years have passed, but the teapot is still in the temple where it basks in the rays of the sun through the windows.