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The Legend of the First Crow

Updated on May 24, 2021
precy anza profile image

Precy enjoys sharing Filipino legends. She also helps in learning to speak & appreciate the Filipino language & Ilocano through writing.

What's the legend of the crow?
What's the legend of the crow? | Source

Crows are intelligent birds with shiny black feathers and sometimes with a bit of gray plumage. One thing you probably have noticed about crows is their cawing sound when crows are nearby.

There is also a superstition associated with the crow, which I heard from my mom, a group of crow hanging on the rooftop or near the house of an ill person is a bad luck. That aside ad their cawing sound, have you ever wondered why is the crow color black? There is a Philippine legend that explains how this intelligent bird got its voice and color..

Many years ago, there was a happy couple living a simple life in the province, and having two beautiful daughters completed their happiness. They feel so blessed having their two angels.

But then, the father was left alone to raise his two lovely daughters as his wife passed away unexpectedly.

The difference between the two girls are noticeable as they grow up not only on their physical appearance but also on their behavior. The first daughter has tan colors and beautiful, most importantly, she has a kind heart, and helps her father and other people in her simple way. She helps their father who's raising them all by himself by making the house chores, her name is Rhia. She keeps the house clean and she cookss amongst other things that needs to be done. She even help her beloved father on their livelihood, and that is fishing. On the other hand, the younger one has a lighter skin with a fine, smooth hair. Of course she was lovelier than her older sister. Her name is Uwa.

But there is a big difference between the two. The younger one was a complete opposite of the first daughter as she was a snobbish and she doesn't help on any household chores that needs to be done. All she does is spending her time adoring herself and her hair, combing and braiding it. She let her sister do all the work.

But the younger daughter was blessed as she got her mother's beautiful voice. She got a natural talent in singing. She have a heavenly voice and everyone who hears her singing thinks it's a voice of a goddess. People in the area loves her singing and her older sister loves her and is happy for all the praises and admiration Uwa gets.

Later on, their father died too from an illness. Now, the two don't have anyone else except themselves and they have to work for their food. Rhia continued what their father does for a living, fishing. Her younger sister should be helping her but she doesn't. The younger one just stays home and does nothing at all. Not even cooking for her older sister. She spends her time the way she wanted to spend it, she either sings or beautify herself.

The older daughter always tries to talk to her younger sister about helping her with the fishing, "Could you come and help me today? Fishing is a hard work for a girl but I have to do it and I sure could used your help," she said.

"No, I wouldn't go in there with you. It is hot and as you said it is hard so I might just stay in here," said Uwa.

The poor older daughter, she's getting tired of the hard work all by herself. Her younger sister refused to help and since she has a beautiful voice, she thought of the idea that maybe her younger sister Uwa could sing in exchange of food. But the thought of it got her younger sister angry.

"I am not going to sing for us to have something to eat. Not everyone deserves to hear my voice," she answered back. "And besides, as being the older one, it is your responsibility to work for us both, not me."

Then one day, a haggard old woman came to their house asking for food. The older daughter didn't had a second thought, she invited the old woman immediately to come inside, gave her food and water to drink. Uwa on the other hand, hated what her sister did, she doesn't like the old haggard woman being there.

"We can hardly provide food for ourselves and here you are feeding an old stranger," the younger daughter scolded her older sister.

And she drove away the old woman, she doesn't want to see her.

Uwa drove away the old woman her sister invited in.
Uwa drove away the old woman her sister invited in. | Source

To the sisters surprised, the old, haggard woman showed her real form. She was a lovely fairy! The younger daughter was so ashamed of how she had treated the old stranger. She asked for the fairy's forgiveness but the fairy wouldn't forgive her. And it was too late for Uwa as the fairy had already seen what character she has.

The first daughter? She had been rewarded for her kindness despite the haggard human form the fairy took. She had a good life and she hadn't changed a bit. She also continued helping those in need.

Uwa, the younger daughter had her punishment. She had been transformed into a black bird. And her heavenly voice? It's now gone, the fairy took it away and exchanged it for an ugly voice.

From then on, Uwa became the first uwak or crow. She had learned an unforgettable lesson but she can't be transformed back to her human form.

She got punished for treating the old haggard woman who happened to be a fairy. Uwa became the first crow.
She got punished for treating the old haggard woman who happened to be a fairy. Uwa became the first crow. | Source

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