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Fairy tales from ancient Egypt!

Sunday, October 22, 2017

The Owl & the Witch on Halloween









Grimm's Saga 312. Hooting Ursula

(An owl fairy tale for halloween!)


(An Owl Fairy Tale for Halloween)

At midnight in storm and rain the Hackelnberg Huntsman races through the Thuringia Wood. His wagon, horse and hounds make a crackling and creaking noise as he breaks through the brush of his favorite haunt: the Hackel Forest. A night owl flies ahead of him and folk call it Hooting Ursula. Wanderers who happen to meet this terrible pair fall down flat on their stomachs and let the wild huntsman pass by. Soon they hear the barking of hounds and the call: Uh-hu!

Many years ago in a remote cloister in Thuringia there lived a nun named Ursula. During her lifetime she always disturbed the choir with her shriek-like singing. For that reason they called her
Hooting Ursula. But things only got worse after her death. Each night starting at eleven o’clock she stuck her head through a hole in the church tower and hooted wretchedly. Every morning at four she came uncalled and sang with the sisters. They could endure it for only a few days; on the third morning one nun said softly and full of terror to the nun singing next to her “That is most certainly Ursula!” Suddenly everyone fell silent, their hair stood on end and the nuns ran screaming from the church crying: “Hooting Ursula, Hooting Ursula!” No punishment would induce the nuns to enter the church again until a famous exorcist was called from a Capuchin monastery on the Danube. He banished Hooting Ursula in the form of an owl to the Dummburg region of the Harz Mountains. It was there that Ursula met the Huntsman Hackelnberg. She became charmed by his Uh-hu and he in turn was charmed with her Uh-hu! And now they both go out together, flying through the air on the wild hunt. 

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Friday, October 20, 2017

Strike a Happy Note for Halloween!

It's time to put on a sweater, carve pumpkins and read a fairy tale.  Here is a scary one for Halloween:

Vampire Empire

In Livland the following story is told: on All Soul’s Eve a young boy can often be seen limping about in the streets at dusk. He calls all those who follow Darkness (whose numbers are too numerous to be counted) to come with him. They cannot resist and soon a large throng forms. At midnight another larger man can be seen walking beside the boy. With whip in hand made from plaited strands of iron wire he herds the multitude. He brings down this utensil on the vampires and werewolves running before him and drives them toward the castle on the hill. Their curses and groans reverberate off the steep cliff wall and can be heard in the next village. 


Thursday, October 19, 2017

The Ghosts and Goblins and Ghouls of October

The Ghost in the Castle

In 1592 a young prince went out riding with a hunting party in pursuit of a stag. In the heat of the chase he became separated from his knights and after riding many hours alone, arrived at Boyne Castle, tired and hungry. It was early afternoon and he stood in the shade of a tall linden tree. As he rested, he gazed at the lonely castle. Would anyone be living there,” he thought. A bright ray of sun shone on the castle wall and he followed the sunbeam with his gaze upward to the top-most window. There he could see the figure of a woman dressed in white. He waved to the woman and hoped some refreshment would be offered.

He circled the castle looking for entrance. When he crossed the bridge and entered the castle yard, he found a table spread with the finest foods imaginable. At the head of the table sat the beautiful lady of the house, dressed in a radiant white gown.
“Thank you gentle woman for this refreshment. I am in sore need of sustenance,” he said. And she motioned silently with her hand that he should take what he required. He ate eagerly and his speech was merry. Soon he was in very good spirits indeed.
While the young man was eating he thought how mild and lovely the maiden looked. Her properties were vast, her table rich. Surely she would make a wonderful bride. The thought no sooner entered his mind than the maid’s countenance became dark and sad. A servant came to clear the table and the young prince said to him: “I will return with my hunting party three days hence and then I will ask for your mistress’s hand.” The servant looked at him sadly and said. “You shall never marry though your heart be true.”
Without giving a reply the young prince jumped to his horse, bade a hasty farewell and called over his shoulder “Three days hence, look for me, I shall stand under the linden tree.”
Off he rode and was as good as his promise. In three days time, the hunting horn was heard in the valley announcing the arrival of a large procession of knights. It was afternoon and a mighty storm threatened. Thunder could be heard coming closer and closer, and heavy black clouds filled the sky. The prince searched for the linden tree but the landscape looked different now. The castle seemed dark and abandoned. At last he found a dead tree, where the linden had been three days before. The prince stood below, gazing up at the castle wall and the top-most window. He saw a faint figure at the window and he called up “Three days hence and look at me, as I stand under the linden tree.”His knights urged him to leave the desolate place, as a fierce storm was moving in. Lightning struck on all sides and the spot where the prince stood was bare and exposed. The knights ran to seek cover as a loud clap of thunder was heard. As they turned back to look at the prince they saw the lightning strike him and he was dead. 

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Fairy Tale Channel Wishes You a Happy, Scary October

 With plenty of good reading!

To read tales about witches, click on the Witches and Witch's Sabbath labels.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Fairy Tale Channel Countdown to Halloween



Only two more weeks until Halloween!


Read a fairy tale!


To read more ghost tales, click on the Ghosts label below.

Monday, October 2, 2017

Today, October 2, is Guardian Angel Day!

As cited in The Oxford Book of Days, October 2 is Guardian Angel Day. "The devotion to a personal guardian (of body and soul) is pre-Christian: at Rome every man had his genius, every woman her Iuno. Among church writers it was disputed which persons had guardian angels, and which angels they were."

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Knight Frankenstein and the Lindworm at the Fountain

Grimm’s Saga No. 219: Knight Frankenstein and the Lindworm at the Fountain






(Image after Edward Burne Jones: St. George kills the dragon).

In ancient times three brothers lived in the old castle of Frankenstein one-and-a-half hours distant from Darmstadt. Today you can still see their gravestones in the Oberbirbach Church. One of the brothers was named Hans, and his carved image standing on a dragon is still displayed in the churchyard. The village had a fountain, out of which both townsfolk and castle dwellers drew their water. But a horrible dragon nested near the fountain and the people could not fetch water if they did not first feed the dragon a sheep or cow. As long as the dragon was eating they could approach the water. Finally the Knight decided to put an end to this mischief. He waged battle with the worm until at last he was able to cut off its head. He wanted to bore through the rump of the dragon with his spear, which still lay wriggling. The pointed tail of the beast now encircled the knight’s right leg and pierced his knee socket, the only spot not covered by his armor. The entire worm was poisonous and Hans von Frankenstein gave up his life.


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Monday, September 11, 2017

Grimm's Saga No. 222: The Maiden with Keys



For Holy Cross Day, September 14th: The Chatelaine of Oselberg


In ancient times a castle stood on the Oselberg Mountain between Dinkelsbuehl and Hahnkamm. Here a widow lived with her father as chatelaine, keeping the keys to all the rooms of the castle in her possession. In the end she fell to her death when the castle walls collapsed. Screams can  often be heard at that place but it is only her spirit that floats round the fallen stone. She often appears on the evening of the four Ember days*; then she is in the form of a maiden, carrying a ring of keys at her side. Old farmers say the land was once owned by her father and the maiden was a pagan daughter of old. She became enchanted and was transformed into a terrible snake; others say they have seen her as viper but with the head and shape of a woman down to her waist. She always carries a ring of keys round her neck.

* Ember days: Four days immediately after 1) the first Sunday in Lent 2) Pentecost 3) Holy Cross Day (Sept. 14) or 4) St. Lucy’s Day (Dec. 13). Traditionally this is a fast day. These days designate each of four periods or seasons of the year, which were times of fasting (but became times of ordination in the Anglican Church).





Friday, September 1, 2017

Fairy Tale of the Month: The Possessed Princess

An ancient Egyptian fairy tale describing the tribulations of a possessed princess and her wondrous cure by the miraculous works of the deity, Chunsu.





To read more about the fairy tale and ideas of demons and the divine, click on the following link:

http://www.fairytalechannel.com/2009/01/human-versus-demon-versus-devine.html


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Monday, August 21, 2017

Possessed Princess, Part 2










But the demon spoke from inside the princess and said “You come in peace, you powerful god, you banisher of evil. You are lord over Bechten and all the people are your slaves. I am your slave. I shall go back to the place whence I came. But I ask that you order a festival to be held in my name and for the Prince of Bechten.”




The god nodded in approval and said to his priests “Bring a large sacrifice for this demon!” And it was done. A festival was called and a sacrifice was made and the demon lingered a while with the Prince of Bechten, for that was the place he loved. Finally, at the command of Chunsu, the Executor of Plans in Thebes, the demon left that place peacefully. The Prince of Bechten rejoiced loudly and all the people living in his kingdom.


Now the Prince of Bechten decided the god should not return to Egypt but should stay on with his people. He would not let him leave. The god stayed three years and nine months. One day as the king was lying in his bed, he had a vision of the god flying out of his temple like a golden falcon. When the prince awoke, he was full of terror and said “This god who has stayed with us, has moved back to Egypt. May his wagons and horses also return to Egypt.”


The god was released and sent back to Egypt. Gifts of every kind, soldiers and horses were given to him. When they all arrived in Thebes, Chunsu, the Executor of Plans met Chunsu the Beautiful Resting One. He spread out all the gifts and didn’t take a single gift for his own but instead, returned to his dwelling in peace. This happened in the thirty-fifth year of the reign of King Ramses, who awards life and is like the Sun God, Ra.

To read more about the fairy tale: 

http://www.fairytalechannel.com/2009/01/human-versus-demon-versus-devine.html


Translation  FairyTaleChannel.com

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

The Possessed Princess, An Egyptian Fairy Tale





The Possessed Princess, an Egyptian Fairy Tale

Part 1
   Cast of Characters:









































The Fairy Tale: The Possessed Princess

Cast of Characters:


The Moon God, Chunsu, also known as Neferhetep, the Beautiful Resting One

An offshoot of this deity, Chunsu, the Executor of Plans
King Ramses II of Egypt
The Prince of Bechten
His daughter, Nefer-u-Ra (the Beauty of the Sun)
Her sister, the Princess Bentrescht
A library scribe
A palace scribe
The princely scribe Thuti-emheb
Place: Ancient Egypt, Northeastern Syria and the Land of Bechten (somewhere in Asia)
Time: The text claims the story took place in 1350 B.C. but a more realistic date for the text itself is closer to around 100 B.C.

His majesty, King Ramses, was residing in his palace in Neharina. Princes from the farthest reaches of the earth came to pay tribute to him. They carried gifts on their backs, one walking behind the other. Gold, silver, lapis lazuli, malachite and every kind of valuable wood was brought before the king out of the land of the gods (Arabia in the East, the country of the sun god). The Prince of Bechten also paid tribute to the king. His oldest daughter led the throng of worshipers and offered praises to him. She was a very beautiful maiden, more beautiful than any other living creature. And so she found favor with the king and she became one of his princely wives. He called her Nefer-u-Ra (the Beauty of the Sun God). When the couple returned to their palace in Egypt, he had every ceremony befitting the wife of a king performed.

After some time, a messenger came from the kingdom of Bechten. He brought many gifts for the king’s wife. When he was allowed to approach the king he said “Praise to you, Sun of the people. May your radiance bestow light and life upon us!” He threw himself down before his majesty and then continued speaking. “I come to you my prince and master, because Bentrescht, Daughter of Joy, who through your marriage with Queen Neferu-Ra is her younger sister. An evil has taken over her body and penetrated her limbs. Your majesty should send a learned scribe to drive the demon from her.”

His majesty commanded: “Bring me a library scribe and a palace scribe.” They were immediately brought to him. His majesty continued “I called you to listen to my words. Find me a man who is most learned from among your group. He should be experienced and well-versed in all things.” They brought forth a princely scribe, Thuti-emheb. His majesty commanded him to go to Bechten with the messenger. When he arrived, he found that Bentrescht had been possessed by a demon but he was too weak to do battle with this spirit. The scribe sent a message to King Ramses “O Prince and Master! Send a god to do battle with this demon for I am too weak.”

Upon receiving word, King Ramses made his way to Chunsu, the Beautiful Resting One and said “O my beautiful master! I stand once more before you on behalf of the daughter of the Prince of Bechten. Please have your servant Chunsu, the Executor of Plans, the Big God, the Banisher of Evil drive out the demon from the princess.”

The god nodded his head twice, indicating he had granted the request. The king continued: “And may your powerful magic be with him so this god can go to Bechten and save the daughter of the Prince of Bechten.” Once more Chunsu, the Beautiful Resting One in Thebes nodded his head twice and conferred four times his magic power on Chunsu, the Executor of Plans in Thebes.

A large ship was brought for the god. It was laden with wagons and horses. Chunsu, the Executor of Plans traveled to the land of Bechten and arrived after one year and five months. The god entered the room of Bentrescht. He used his magic power to heal the princess and immediately she became healthy. But the demon spoke from inside the princess and said “You come in peace, you powerful god, you banisher of evil. You are lord over Bechten and all the people are your slaves. I am your slave. I shall go back to the place whence I came. But I ask that you order a festival to be held in my name and for the Prince of Bechten.”

The god nodded in approval and said to his priests “Bring a large sacrifice for this demon!” And it was done. A festival was called and a sacrifice was made and the demon lingered a while with the Prince of Bechten, for that was the place he loved. Finally, at the command of Chunsu, the Executor of Plans in Thebes, the demon left that place peacefully. The Prince of Bechten rejoiced loudly and all the people living in his kingdom.

Now the Prince of Bechten decided the god should not return to Egypt but should stay on with his people. He would not let him leave. The god stayed three years and nine months. One day as the king was lying in his bed, he had a vision of the god flying out of his temple like a golden falcon. When the prince awoke, he was full of terror and said “This god who has stayed with us, has moved back to Egypt. May his wagons and horses also return to Egypt.”

The god was released and sent back to Egypt. Gifts of every kind, soldiers and horses were given to him. When they all arrived in Thebes, Chunsu, the Executor of Plans met Chunsu the Beautiful Resting One. He spread out all the gifts and didn’t take a single gift for his own but instead, returned to his dwelling in peace. This happened in the thirty-fifth year of the reign of King Ramses, who awards life and is like the Sun God, Ra.

Translation  FairyTaleChannel.com

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Fairy Tale Dancing Mania (per the Brothers Grimm)


Grimm’s Saga No. 51: Dance with the Waterman

Near the town of Laibach a water spirit lived in a river of the same name. He was called Nix or Waterman. He showed himself to fishermen and sailors by night and to others by day so that everyone knew how he rose up from the water and revealed himself in human form.
In the year 1547 on the first Sunday in the month of Julius, the entire village gathered according to an old custom at the old Laibach market near the fountain, under the cheerful shade of a beautiful linden tree. Here they ate their meal in a joyful, communal spirit whilst music played and not a few danced merrily. After a while a finely shaped, well-dressed young swain entered the throng, as if he wanted to join in the dance. He nodded politely to the assembled folk and offered each dancer his hand in a friendly way. But his grip was limp and ice-cold and upon touching his hand, a gray shudder went through the limb of the person he greeted. Soon he selected from the group a splendidly adorned, fresh-faced but impudent maid, who was known as Ursula the shepherdess and began the dance. He was a graceful dancer and commanded all the unusual steps. After they had danced wildly with each other for a time, they veered from the platform, which had marked off the dance space and swirled ever farther and farther away. From the Linden tree across the Sittich square and on down to the Laibach River, where he in the presence of many seamen, grabbed the waist of his partner and jumped into the splashing waters. Both disappeared before their very eyes.

The linden tree stood until 1638, when it had to be chopped down because of age.


Fairy Tale Factum:


According to folk tradition it was believed that a Wasserman (or Nix) held fast to the souls of the drowned in his underwater dwelling. Varying accounts describe him as having either a beautiful form or an ugly and terrible countenance. Like dancing, the church uniformly frowned upon these spirits and equated them with the diabolical and dangerous. Folk tradition, however, preserves a certain amount of awe and reverence for them.

St. Vitus is the patron saint of dancers for allegedly his powers included the ability to alleviate Tanzwut or hysterical dancing mania. The symptoms included frenzied leaping and swirling, even uncontrollable gyrations. Folk tradition often frowns on dancing and music, for it seems these two pastimes inevitably led to the unhinging of village youth. Unfortunately in this story the impudent Ursula could not be rescued by St. Vitus. Perhaps his cult had not yet been sufficiently established in Laibach or had already been diminished after the Reformation. Of interest in this saga is the description of a rather romanticized peasant life, with al fresco dancing, eating and celebrating at the height of summer on the village green. Two characteristics described in this tale can still be found today in many towns throughout Europe: the linden (or lime) tree and the fountain on the square. 



Translation: Copyright FairyTaleChannel.com
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Tuesday, April 18, 2017

The German Saga of Knight Eppela Gaila


Grimm’s Saga No. 130: Eppela Gaila

Not long ago, Nuremberg street urchins still sang this old rhyme:

“Eppela Gaila from Dramout
Always rides on the fourteenth out.”

“The Nuremberg fiend rides out,
Eppela Gaila from Dramout.”

In times of old Eppelin von Gailing lived in Bayreuth near Drameyesel (a very small village parish after Muggendorf). He was a bold knight, who wantonly plundered and pillaged. He was especially inclined to do harm to the Nuremberg townfolk, whom he sought out for special distress and sorrow. But he also understood magic and had a colt that could ride and trot, canter and gallop until it’s hooves leapt from the earth and soared to high rock and crag, or down to river and meadow. And the hoof of his colt never trod on a single blade of grass.

His main estate was near Cliff Gailenreuth, but scattered throughout the region he had other castles and in a flash he could fly like the wind from one fortress to another. Often flying from one side of the mountain to the opposite or even reaching Saint Lorenz in Muggendorf. Nothing could stop his terror in Nuremberg, neither high stone wall nor deep moat. He committed many crimes and seemed unconquerable. But finally, the Nuremberg townsfolk captured him, brought him to the New Market and hanged him on the gallows with his accomplices. The Nuremberg Castle still displays weapons and the wall still shows a hoof print from his horse, which sank into the soft clay when he jumped onto it.


Translation Copyright FairyTaleChannel.com
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Pass on to friends or link to.
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Monday, April 10, 2017

Fairy Tale of the Resurrected Son

The Son, Resurrected             An Italian Fairy Tale from the Alps


There once was a dragon who loved eating flesh, preferably that of children. Ideally boys, not girls. When he had gobbled up all the boys in the village and from nearby towns, only his own son remained, a boy of four years. One evening the dragon said to his wife: “Tomorrow I will go into the forest to chop wood and will return toward nightfall. Send my dinner to the forest.”  

“And what shall I send you?” asked the dragon wife. “For two years you have only devoured children. Now, only your very own son is left. Maybe you want to eat him?”

“Precisely him, my son.  And my daughter shall bring him to me in the forest.”

The dragon wife promised it and the two went to sleep. 

At dawn the dragon rose and went into the forest. The dragon wife also got up, went to her son’s room, chopped and cut, boiled and roasted. At lunch time she called to her daughter to take the meal to her father in the woods. When the daughter saw her brother in this way, the poor child began to cry. The mother boxed her ears and prepared the basket, placed it on the girls shoulders  and pushed her out of the house.

On the path the girl saw an old woman, it was the Madonna. She said to her, “Where are you going my child with that basket?”   The poor girl did not answer. Instead she placed the basket on the ground and showed the woman its contents.

“You want to bring your brother as meal?” the old woman asked.

“What else can I do?” the girl replied. “Now he is dead. If only I could have saved him! But I didn’t know anything about it.”

“Good, if you do what I say your brother will come back to life.”

“What shall I do? Tell me! If only I could see my brother standing before me again, beautiful and alive!”

“Listen! Leave the basket here, go back home, go into the barn, take the calf and bring it here.”

The girl did what the old woman commanded. One-half hour later she returned with the calf. The woman took one piece after another, put them back together and shaped the dead child. Then she touched its forehead and said “Go my dear son, return to the village. There you will find good people who will care for you. And always remember your sister who loves you!” The boy hugged his sister and left. The Madonna touched the calf and it fell into pieces.

The girl brought the food to her father. He thought the meat very tasty, ate with a healthy appetite and didn’t notice anything. But since then the dragon and dragon wife could no longer sleep because every night a voice below the window sang:

My mother killed me,
My sister carried me,
My father ate me,

Cucuck, Cucuck! And I am still alive!



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Wednesday, March 22, 2017