It was the beginning of 14th century when our country was under the domination of the Chinese Ming dynasty. They took everything and considered residents as grasses. Everyone wanted to against them and brought the independence back to the homeland. Many insurgent armies were born but there was no success. People still kept revolting against their wicked rulers.
In Thanh Hóa province, there was a fisherman named Lê Thận. One night, while he was fishing, he found his fishnet was very heavy. The man was very glad and thought he would have many fishes to sell soon. He hauled the net, singing with joy. However, when he looked into the net, there was nothing but an iron bar which was old and rust. Angrily, the man threw it away and kept working. However, whenever he hauled the net, he only received the same iron bar. Moving to other places, trying to catch some fishes but the man still had nothing but the iron bar in his net. Wondering why it was so incredible, the man picked it up, took it near to the fire and realized that was an old blade without hilt. He brought it into his hut and forgot it.
After that, he joined in Lê Lợi’s insurgent army, who he did not have any relation but he admired a lot. Lê Lợi was a great leader but his army was still weak. They were trying to strengthen themselves to against Ming army. Many people supported them and joined the insurgent army. Lê Thận was very excited and he was not afraid of danger. One day, Lê Lợi and some people visited Lê Thận. He sat in the hut, talking with the owner. In the darkness of the evening, he suddenly saw something shining in a corner of the hut. He asked Lê Thận so the owner told him about the strange blade. Curiously, Lê Lợi went to pick the old blade up and saw there were some characters on the blade that said “The Will of Heaven”. Everybody was surprised but they still did not think that it would be a magic sword blade.
After that, Lê Lợi and his followers lost in a battle with Ming army. They had to run into a forest to hide. Le Loi climbed on an old banyan tree to hide himself. When his enemies went away, Lê Lợi looked around to find his companions. He suddenly saw a weird light on a branch near to him. He thought it might be fireflies but looked at it again, he was not sure. He got closer to look at it and realized that was a hilt. There were some germs inlaid in it that were shining. He remembered of the old blade at Lê Thận’s hut so he brought the hilt with him.
When Lê Lợi met others, he told them about the hilt. Lê Thận gave the blade. How amazing! The hilt and the blade fit perfectly. People were very glad. Lê Thận knelt down, brought the sword above his head and said happily: “My Lord, Gods mean to entrust the important mission for you. We are willing to give our hearts, our lives to go with you and this magic sword to save our country.” Other people also knelt down and showed their will to die for their beloved country freedom.
After that, Lê Lợi’s insurgent army grew quickly. The magic sword gave them more strength to against the invader. They started to get win. People in every place in the country helped them to fight against Ming army. Finally, in 1427 Lê Lợi’s army won a glorious victory that force Ming army to leave our country. Our country was once again free from Chinese rule. People lived in peace.
Lê Lợi ascended the throne in 1428. One year after that, while Lê Lợi was on his dragon boat rowing around Lục Thủy lake (Green Water lake), a giant golden tortoise came toward him. Lê Lợi told his servants to slow down. The King felt the magic sword shaking. The golden tortoise was not afraid of people, rose up his head and came closer to the boat. The tortoise bowed to the King and said “Now the peace has been come back to the country. Please give the sword back to Long Quân, my Lord!” Lê Lợi respectfully gave the magic sword to the tortoise. The tortoise took the sword and dived into the water. When the tortoise and the sword had disappeared, people still saw something shining under the green water.
From that time, the lake has been named Hồ Gươm (Sword Lake) or Hồ Hoàn Kiếm (Restored Sword Lake). It is a holy place of Hanoi, of Vietnam.