He had two court counselors: a lark and an ass. The first had lost her prestige when the satyr went deaf. Formerly, when, weary with lust, he softly played his flute, the lark accompanied him.
Afterward, in his great forest, where he could not hear even the voice of Olympian thunder, the patient animal of the long ears served him as mount, while the lark, at break of dawn, flew out of his hands, singing on her flight to the skies.
The forest was vast. To the lark belonged the tree-tops; to the ass, the pasture. The lark was greeted by the first gleams of dawn; she drank dew in the shoots; she awoke the oak, singing to it, “Old oak, awake.” She rejoice ‘ in a kiss from the sun; she was beloved by the morning star.
And the blue firmament so vast knew that she, so tiny, dwelt beneath its immensity. The ass (though he had not yet conversed with Kant) was an expert in philosophy, according to common report. The
Ruben Dario is one of the few Spanish-American writers who have won international celebrity. He first became known as a boy poet, but soon after his sensational appearance in the field of literature, he became a journalist. His travels began at an early age. He was in the diplomatic service and represented his country in several cities abroad.
Of a rather melancholy and neurotic temperament, he had none the less an extremely varied and active career, and in spite of his diplomatic and other duties he continued to write. Though he is best known as a poet, he is the author of several short stories and books of travel. His volume of prose tales and poems called Azul (1888) attracted notice in Europe. It is from this collection that The Deaf Satyr is selected. This charming idyll exemplifies Dario’s outstanding qualities of style and literary form.
The present version is translated by Isaac Goldberg especia
Selma Lagerlof came of a family of landowners, from that part of rural Sweden which she described in many of her most delightful books, particularly in Gosta Berling’s Saga. In her youth she taught for a little, making time to write occasionally, until public recognition and material success enabled her to devote all her energy to literary work. Her books, which include novels, travel sketches, plays, and stories, reveal a personality deeply conscious of its environment. In 1909 Selma Lagerlof received the Nobel Prize for literature.
The Eclipse is translated by Velma Swanston Howard. It originally appeared in the American-Scandinavian Review, December, 1922. For permission to reprint, thanks are due to the editor and the translator.
There were Stina of Ridgecote and Lina of Birdsong and Kajsa of Littlemarsh and Maja of Skypeak and Beda of Finn-darkness and Elin, the new wife on the old soldier’s
“Oh, ouch, oh!” shrieked the devil. “Oh, please let me out, and I’ll promise faithfully never to come back again.”
“Well, now, I guess the joints are pretty well soldered,” said the smith, “so I’ll let you out.”
So the smith opened the purse, and the devil jumped out and rushed off in such a hurry, he did not even dare to look back.
As the smith thought over the whole matter, he thought he had made a mistake in falling out with the devil. “For if I don’t get into heaven,” he said to himself, “I might be without lodgings, since I’m on bad terms with the fellow who rules in hell.”
He decided he might as well try now as later to see whether he could get into either heaven or hell; then he would know what was in store for him. So he shouldered his hammer and started off.
When he had gone quite a bit, he came to the crossroads where they branched off to heaven and hell, and there he met a tailor’s apprent
“Thanks,” said the devil, sitting down in the armchair. But no sooner was he seated than the smith told him that, as he looked his work over, he was afraid it would take him at least four years to sharpen the nail and that the devil would have to sit there while he worked.
Fault of the iron
At first the devil begged him politely to let him out of the chair, but then he got angry and began to threaten him. The smith kept making all kinds of excuses, saying it was the fault of the iron which was hard as the deuce, and he tried to console the devil by telling him how comfortable he was in the armchair and that he would certainly let him out in four years on the stroke of the clock.
At last the devil saw there was nothing for it but to promise that he would not come for the smith till the four years were over.
“Well, then, you can get up,” said the smith, and the devil hustled off as fast as ever he could.
“Well, then, I wish, first, that whenever I tell someone to climb up into the pear tree outside the smithy wall, he will have to stay there till I tell him he may come down again,” said the smith. “Next, I wish that when I beg anyone to sit down in the armchair in the workroom, he will have to stay there till I myself beg him to get up again, and, lastly, whenever I ask someone to creep into the steel mesh purse I have in my pocket, he will have to stay there till I give him leave to creep out again.”
“You’ve wished very foolishly,” said St. Peter; “first of all, you should have asked for God’s grace and friendship.”
“I didn’t dare ask for anything so great,” said the smith, whereupon Our Lord and St. Peter bade him good-bye and left.
Well, time wore on, and when the seven years were up, the devil came, according to the terms of the contract, to fetch the smith.
“Are you ready?” he asked, poking his nose in at the
“You’re not such a bad smith, after all,” he said.
“Do you think so?” said Our Lord.
Soon after the smith’s mother came to tell him dinner was ready. She was old and wrinkled, bent double, and barely able to walk.
“Now you mark carefully what you see,” said Our Lord, and He took the old woman, put her into the forge, and changed her into a beautiful young girl.
“I repeat what I’ve said,” said the smith, “you’re quite a smith. Over my door stands: ‘Here lives the master of all masters,’ but even if I have to say it myself, ‘We live and learn,’ ” and, so saying, he went home to eat his dinner. When he came back to the smithy, a man rode up and wanted his horse shod. Our Lord and St. Peter were still there.
“I’ll do it in a jiffy,” said the smith; “I’ve just learned a new way of shoeing which isn’t so bad when the days are short.” S
Both Asbjornsen and Moe came from the country, and belonged to families in modest circumstances. They made friends while preparing for a university career. Influenced by the Grimms, they set out to study the folklore of their country, and in their first collection of tales, which appeared in 1841, they produced a work of striking interest and genuine originality. “This vdlume,” says John Gade, “was perhaps the greatest single event in the whole movement of that generation toward a more truly national culture.”
The Smith Who Could Not Get Into Hell is a highly artistic treatment of a bit of ancient folklore. It is reprinted, in the translation by Helen and John Gade, from Norwegian Fairy Tales, American-Scandinavian Foundation, New York, 1924, by permission of the Foundation.
The ‘Pearl of the Black Sea’ is impatient to see you enjoying your Bulgaria vacation
Bulgaria vacation in Nessebar– the scent of the sea and of journey through times long since passed
Often referred to as the ‘Pearl of the Black Sea’ and ‘Bulgaria’s Dubrovnik’, Nessebar is more like a magical and timeless feeling than a resort. Windmills, ancient fortresses and sea depths that keep ancient secrets… This is not a fairytale for times long since passed but the decor of a modern and contemporary town – Nessebar, perfect for a great Bulgaria vacation and private tour Bulgaria.
A private Balkan trip in the Balkan countries means a good possibility to sink into the history of the region and put the pieces of the jigsaw puzzle together.
What is a better way to tease and wake your senses up than travelling? They say that travelling is the key to happiness. Do you believe it? I do. Join us and let’s find out together.
The countries on the Balkan Peninsula are all different and at the same time they share this ‘similar difference’. (Balkan tours 2019 ) For example, ‘The coffee we had tastes like the Turkish coffee but they call it Greek. Or, ‘ Isn’t that dish the same as the one we had in the place, etc.’ These kinds of conversations probably look familiar to you. I am sure most of you experienced them and enjoyed them really much.