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Historians debate whether the late antique historian Jordanes employed oral traditions in his history of the Goths: the Getica. Close examination of one narrative in the Getica demonstrates that Jordanes almost certainly knew an aetiological folktale related to the modern fairy tale type 'The Frog King' (ATU 440). This folktale, however, was not of Gothic origins: it was a native East Roman legend. In context, this lost folktale was a miracle account, not a fairy tale. Jordanes' legend shares motifs with other pagan, Jewish, and Christian stories from late antiquity, illustrating the common storytelling culture of the period.