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Abo Mamongkuroit

North Sulawesi - Indonesia
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Abo Mamongkuroit was just a poor man who lived with his wife Putri Monondeaga at a forest in North Sulawesi, Indonesia. Unfortunately, Mamongkuroit’s wife was once kidnapped by a giant cannibal when he was working far away from home. Could he release his beloved wife from the giant cannibal? Here is the story of Abo Mamongkuroit from North Sulawesi, Indonesia.


Once upon a time, there was a couple who settled down in a decrepit hut at a forest in North Sulawesi; they were Abo Mamongkuroit and his wife Putri Monondeaga. They loved each other though they lived in poor. To meet their needs, they went to the forest, looking for some woods to be sold at the market as firewood. They also reared some poultry, and sold the egg. It was their way to struggle in limited resource.

They worked very hard at all day, but they could not live in sufficient. They lived in poverty and they want to solve this problem. The idea to work in the city came in to their mind.

Mamongkuroit told his wife about his will to leave home, earning a better living at the city that was far away from home.

 “Honey, we’ve been working so hard. But still, we cannot fulfil our need. I am asking your understanding about my willingness to earn the living in the city,” he said.

Putri Monondeaga was silent for a while. She was thinking about the days without her beloved husband besides her.

 “Would you leave me here, alone? She asked.

 “I have no another choice, honey. Leaving you here for a better life is the only option. So let me go, honey….” he replied.

Deep inside his heart, Abo Mamongkuroit was really hard to see his wife alone at the forest. But finally he could make his wife sure that everything would be fine during his leaving. He asked Monondeaga to keep rearing the poultry and taking care of herself well. After all, Putri Monondeaga let him go.

She believed in her husband’s promise that he would not leave her for a long time.

 “Alright, honey. I let you go, but promise that you will be back soon,” she said.

 “Yes, of course! I promise of going back home,” he answered.

In a relenting night, Putri Monondeaga stocked her husband with some foods and clothes. When the sun was going to rise, Abo Mamongkuroit started the journey to the city. Putri Monondeaga couldn’t shed her tear. For her, releasing the beloved husband was a hard thing. However, she held Abo Mamongkuroit to its promise of going home soon.

 “That’s enough, honey. I’m going now. Take care of yourself. I promise that it won’t be long,” he said.

 “I keep your promise. Be careful along the way,” she remarked.

She entered her home, soon after Abo Mamongkuroit disappeared from her sight. Now she was alone. No one accompanied her. She went to the forest, gathered some woods lonely. Likewise, now she had to manage the poultry by oneself.

In the following day, as usual Putri Monondeaga fed the poultry. All of sudden, there was a booming voice, saying…

 “O…Putri Monondeaga! Why are you now alone?”

When she turned around, she saw a giant creature that was known by the surrounding people as Tulap, the giant cannibal. Many were swallowed by him; and perhaps, that was the turn of Putri Monodeaga to be his meal on that day.

 “Don’t eat me, Mr Tulap! Please, don’t eat me!” she appealed.

 “Don’t be afraid. I’m not eating you as long as you want to go with me, to my home,” Tulap said.

Putri Monondeaga took a few deep breaths to calm herself down. She knew that Tulap would eat her, even though she followed what he wanted. Thus, she thought for a moment before answering Tulap’s order.

 “Alright, I’ll follow you, but not for today! I want to wash my hair first. You’d better come here tomorrow.”

 “OK, I hold your promise. I’ll be here tomorrow and pick you up.”

Tulap went back home. He did believe in what Putri Monondeaga’s promise. In another side, Putri Monondeaga was in trouble. She couldn’t sleep that night, thinking for another reason to trick the giant cannibal in the following day. That day she could cheat Tulap by pretending that she wanted to wash her hair.

Tulap came to Putri Monodeaga’s house cheerfully when the sun was going to set in the following day. However, Putri Monondeaga did still not know another reason to cheat the giant cannibal.

 “O…Deaga! I’m here to pick your promise. I’ll bring you now,” Tulap’s remark.

 “Opps, wait a minute! How about tomorrow? I haven’t taken a bath yet, so I suggest you to come here again tomorrow,” Monondeaga tried to cheat the giant cannibal Tulap.

 “Yes, I like to see a beautiful, fresh, and girl like you. Ok, I let you take a bath for today. And I’ll be here tomorrow,” Tulap unpredictably believed in Putri Monondeaga’s promise.

Putri Monondeaga could cheat Tulap for several days ahead; hence the turn for her to be Tulap’s food had been postponed. Reason by reason came out of her lip aimed at pretending Tulap, and dayd by day she waited for the beloved husband came home. However, Abo Mamongkuroit still haven’t come back home yet. She was now in dangerous. She didn’t find any reason to hold over the time the giant cannibal picked her up.

Until one day, Tulap rejected another reason coming out of Putri Monondeaga. Tulap was so bored to be pretended for several times; and that was the time.

 “Oh, my God! It’s over!” she mumbled to herself, wishing that her husband would be going home soon.

 “O…Deaga! Now, I don’t want to hear any reason from you. This time I’ll take you home!” Tulap said.

 “Wait a minute, I’ll comb my hair first,” she said.

On the spur of the moment, Tulap grabbed her, and took her home. Nothing could be done by her, except shouting….”Help…! Help…! Release me, now!”

She was brought to Tulap’s home. After arriving at his home, Tulap put her inside an iron cage, along with other people who had been caught by Tulap several days ago before. They were all in total desperate; nothing could they do to release themselves from the threat of the giant cannibal, Tulap.

Likewise, Putri Monondeaga gradually turned so sad of her condition now. She was imagining about her husband would release her, along with other people inside the cave. She kept praying on her husband so that he would come back soon.

A week ahead, Abo Mamongkuroit was back from the city. He brought some foods and money that he got during the work in the city. When he reached his home, nothing was seen.

He searched for his wife around the home, but all efforts ended in failure. Then he began thinking something might have happened towards his wife. He mumbled to himself, “I’m afraid there must be something bad has come to her during my leaving.”

Abo Mamongkuroit then ran in a rush to the nearest river. But, he found nothing. He succeeded in searching inside the forest and everywhere with hope that he could find her.

He began the searching for the second time after stocking himself with sufficient foods and drinks in the following day. All night and day he searched for Putri Monondeaga, but emptiness he found only. He asked every single person he met along the way, but none of them admitted that they ever saw her.

He continued searching for his wife. He passed the forest and crossed a river. When he was crossing the river, he saw a big house. He was curious of knowing who occupied the house.  When he was almost there to the house, he was stopped by Tulap. Yes, Tulap was the owner of the house, and his wife Putri Monodeaga was inside the house.

 “Who…are…you?!!! How come you’re here?” Tulap said angrily.

 “Me? I am Abo Mamongkuroit! I’m here looking for my wife, Putri Monondeaga,” Mamongkuroit replied.

 “Putri Monondeaga? She is inside my house! You may bring her back, but you have to defeat me first!”

 “If this is the only way to take my wife back home, I’ll willy-nilly receive it. Let’s do it..!”

 “Ha…ha…ha…ha…! You’re brave enough to take my challenge! Now I want us to fight,”

 “Come on…!”

The fight began. All the hostages watched the fight, including Putri Monondeaga. Both Tulap and Abo Mamongkuroit attacked each other in turn. Tulap kicked Mamongkuroit, but Mamongkuroit held himself still. On the opposite, Tulap was thrown away afar when Abo Mamongkuroit kicked him.

 “Just give up now! It’s all proven that I am stronger than you, in fact!” Abo Mamongkuroit said.

Tulap was quite anger to hear that insult. He struck at Mamongkuroit for the second time, but still, Mamongkuroit was able to keep himself still. Then, Mamongkuroit hit Tulap in fierce until Tulap was thrown away at afar, and died. All of sudden, Tulap’s wife came to appear.

She took revenge against Mamongkuroit. She swung the sword on her hand to Mamongkuroit, but Mamongkuroit could stay away. Then Mamongkuroit released his sudden-death thwack to her, and died. Now, the couple of giant cannibals had died on the hand of Abo Mamongkuroit.

After that, he freed his beloved wife and all the people caught inside Tulap’s house. He asked them to back homes, and of course, both him and Putri Monondeaga walked together to their home.

Since then, there was not any trouble at the village. The people lived in harmony, and Abo Mamongkuroit and Putri Monondeaga lived happily as the coming of a new family member amongst them; they had a baby and lived in sufficient.


Here is the story of Abo Mamongkuroit originating from North Sulawesi Province, Indonesia. The story is merely a fairy tale as it never happened in real life. The story bears a moral message that arrogance would lead someone to unluckiness. Just take a look at the figure of the giant cannibal Tulap. His big-head had driven him to death. In fact, the figure Abo Mamongkuroit, who was just a small-size person, could defeat two giant cannibals in one time. In the Tunjuk Ajar Melayu, it is said that those who show arrogant behaviour will only suffer from unluckiness and suffering.

Apa tanda orang celaka
Sifatnya sombong bercampur pongah

Kalau hidup besar kepala
Lambat laun ditimpa bala.

Samsuni (sas/118/12-08)
Translated by Irfan Nugroho (ter/102/02-09)


Adapted from, Sumaraw, Anneke. 1993. Cerita Rakyat dari Sulawesi Utara. Jakarta: Grasindo.

Anonymous. “Sulawesi Utara,” available online at http://id.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sulawesi_Utara, retrieved on December 27th, 2008.

Effendy, Tenas. 2006. Tunjuk Ajar Melayu. Yogyakarta: Center for Research and Development of Malay Culture in cooperation with Adicita Karya Nusa Publisher.


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