Mr Miacca

mr miaccaMr Miacca is an English folktale of the type, where adults tell stories of imaginary beings to frighten children into being good. In the story, a boy does something wrong twice and finds himself about to be cooked for Mr Miacca’s dinner. He gets away the first time by tricking Mrs Miacca, but the second time Mr Miacca has other ideas.

English Learner Vocabulary Help

The words in our Beginner level Simplified English story which are not in our 400 word list are: , , , , and .

General Comments on the Story

english fairy talesOur source for Mr Miacca was a children’s book called English Fairy Stories by Australian folktale collector Joseph Jacobs, first published in 1890. The book can be downloaded in various e-book forms from Project Gutenberg here. An audiobook is available from Librivox here.

Jacobs collected many of his stories by interviewing people about folktales they had heard as a child. He wrote that this one came from a woman who’s mother had told it to her more than 40 years earlier. He admits to changing the ending of the story. In the original, the boy liked to carve wood and just happened to have a carved wooden leg in his pocket. Jacobs thought that this was too much of a coincidence, even for a folk-tale. However, I am not sure that his ending is any more believable. It also seems that Mr Miacca wasn’t just a bad guy. As well as punishing bad children by eating them, he is said to have rewarded good children by leaving gifts. The woman who told Jacobs the story remembered a time in her childhood when she thought she saw Mr. Miacca (in the form of a passing shadow) after he had left her such a gift.

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(n: bogyman pl bogymen) An imaginary monster or bad person, used by adults or older children to frighten bad children into good behavior. 12000

cook(v: cook, cooks, cooked, cooking) To prepare (food) for eating by using heat. 1000

pot(n: pot pl pots) A deep, round container that is used in cooking, for holding food, liquids etc, or for growing plants. 2000

taste(n: taste pl tastes) 1. The sweet, sour, bitter, or salty quality [= flavor] of a thing that you can sense when it is in your mouth. (รสชาติ) 2. A small amount of food or drink that you have in order to see how it tastes. (การชิม) 3. A liking or preference. (ความชอบ) 2000

(prep, conj: until) Up to the time of or when. He was here until one o'clock. I won't know until I get a letter from him. (จนกระทั่ง) 1000

wait(v: wait, waits, waited, waiting) To remain or stay in the same place or without doing anything. Wait here for two minutes while I go inside. I'm waiting for John. (คอย; รอคอย) 1000

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