"' IN I
NEW FAIRY TALES FROM BRENTANO.
ALECTRYO TOLD THEM THE WHOLE STORY Frontdisitee.
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TOLD IN ENGLISH
KATE FREILIGRATH KROEKER
F. CARRUTHERS GOULD
A. C. ARMSTRONG AND SON,
c.''. *v~~ 'N~
GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND (
THE MYRTLE MAIDEN
STORY OF BROKERINA
STORY OF OLD FATHER RHINE
I LITTLE thought, on the appearance of my first volume
of "Fairy Tales from Brentano," that in a year's time
there would be a demand for a second volume, and it
is with sincere pleasure that I record the fact. It was
as gratifying as it was unexpected to learn that the old
German Romancer had met with such favour, not only
in England, but also in America, and I feel confident that
the New Fairy Tales will not be a whit behind the others
in point of interest, originality, and true fairy fancy.
The new volume opens with perhaps one of the most
charming fairy tales ever told, viz., the story of Gockel,
Hinkel, and Gackeleia. That this tale was also a favourite
of Brentano's is proved by his having taken it in hand
towards the end of his life, and having elaborated it to a
tale of rather formidable proportion-not altogether free
from faults of judgment, it must be confessed. ; It is
needless to say that I have translated the celebrated
Gockel story in its shorter and original form, wherein
freshness and quaint humour are blended with true beauty
and poetical grace in the happiest manner.
It is, perhaps, unnecessary to do more than allude to
the exquisite mercantile fooling of Brokerina; while in Old
Father Rhine and tke Miller I have carefully disentangled
the thread of the main story from the very long and com-
plicated original tale. The latter, going off, according to
Brentano's wont, into another long story, I have been
obliged to cut it short and supply an end of my own
invention. Nothing short of positive necessity would have
induced me to do this, and I trust it has been accomplished
in the spirit of the original. It may be of interest to note
here again, that the Lorelei, who, with her seven daughters,
is mentioned in this tale, and who appears at still greater
length in the omitted part, is entirely the invention of
Brentano's muse. Brentano is -thus the first to introduce
her into German literature, both in this tale as in that poem
of his, beginning-
"Zu Bacharach am Rheine
Wohnt eine Zauberin."
In proportion to the charm and originality of these new
stories, was the difficulty of translating and adapting them.
So great, indeed, was this difficulty, that I was at one time
inclined to think it was impossible to do justice to them.
But the very fact of their baffling nature was perhaps the
reason which led to a more serious consideration of their
capabilities later on, and I trust I have acquitted myself of
this most congenial of all tasks, not altogether unsuccess-
In this hope I send out my New Fairy Tales with
heartiest greeting to all the children who shall read them
on this and on the other side of the Atlantic.
KATE FREILIGRATH KROEKER.
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND
NCE upon a time there lived, in the midst
of a large forest, an old man called Gockel.
Gockel had a wife, who was called Hinkel,
and Gockel and Hinkel had a little daughter
They lived together in an old, old castle,
with the internal arrangements of which it
Swas quite superfluous to find fault, because
it was perfectly bare and empty. On the
other hand, it was decidedly open to a good
many improvements in the shape of doors and windows.
To make up for this, however, it was liberally supplied with
air and sunshine and weather of all kinds; for the roof had
fallen in, as also had the staircase and ceilings. Long
grasses and weeds grew in every corner and crevice, and
all birds, from Jenny Wren to the red-legged Stork, built
their nests in the desolate building.
From time to time several aristocratic birds, such as
vultures, hawks, kites, falcons, owls, and ravens, tried hard
to be allowed to settle in the old castle; but Gockel flatly
refused to have anything to do with them, although they
promised him all sorts of game and fish for rent. It was
16 NEW FAIRY TALES FROM BRENTANO.
while discussing this very subject one day that Dame
Hinkel said to her husband:
My dear Gockel, we are so very poor, why will you
not take in these noble and fashionable birds for tenants ?
I am sure that the rent would be most acceptable to us,
and you let out the whole castle to all sorts of singing
birds, who do not pay us a single farthing! "
Then old Gockel answered his wife in this wise:
"Oh, thou foolish woman! Oh, most ill-advised
Hinkel Have you altogether forgotten who we are ?
Do you think it meet and fitting for people of our descent
to live on the rent of birds of prey ? And even supposing
such a sad lot should befall us-which, however, it never
will, for rather would I die of hunger !-with what, think
you, would our aristocratic and fashionable tenants, for-
sooth, pay the rent due to us? Assuredly, would they
throw our dear little feathered guests into your kitchen,
torn and bleeding, according to their barbarous wont!
Would you not rather hear our songsters, who charm this
desolate old building into a cheerful abode with their sweet
songs-would you not rather hear them singing and war-
bling round your threshold, than eat them roasted on
toast ? Would it not break your heart to brown a sweet
nightingale, a merry finch, or the dear little robin redbreast
in a frying-pan or in the oven ? And then, when all the
rent had been paid, and not a single song-bird left, how
would you like to hear nothing but the screaming and
croaking of your horrid birds of prey? And even sup-
posing it possible to prevent all this mischief, are you so
blind as not to see that these robbers only wait to live here
because they know we are going to establish a poultry farm
on a large scale? Is not our fine old Family Hen, Gallina,
sitting on thirty eggs even now ? And will not these, in
due time, turn to thirty hens ? And is it, I ask you, quite
out of the range of possibility that each of these thirty hens
again should lay thirty eggs, which again will hatch another
thirty hens each ? Thirty times thirty already making nine
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINEL, AND GA CKEZLEIA. 17
hundred hens which we are looking forward to ? And to
these nine hundred pullets you would invite vultures, kites,
and hawks, oh, most unwise and foolish Hinkel ? Have
you quite forgotten that you are a descendant of the illus-
trious race of the Langshans ? And that being so, how
can you make such a proposal to the haughty but, alas !
impoverished Marquis of Dorking? Hinkel! I hardly
know thee again Oh, vile poverty! Then it seems to be
true that even the noblest hearts succumb to thee, and are
crushed by thy light and yet so heavy load! "
In such words of high and righteous indignation spake
poor old Gockel, Marquis of Dorking, to Hinkel, his wife,
Countess of Langshan, who stood as abashed and dejected
before her lord as though she had the pip.
When she had collected herself, she was about to say:
But the Birds of Prey sometimes catch young hares,"
when Alectryo, the old, black, large Family Cock,, who
belonged to Gockel, crowed so shrill and clear from the
high wall where he was sitting that he cut off the words
from her mouth before she had uttered them, as with a
knife. And when Gockel, Marquis of Dorking, proudly
adjusted his torn and shabby little mantle round his an-
cestral shoulders, Dame Hinkel did not dare say another
word, for she respected both her husband and the Family
She was just about to turn and go away when Gockel
Oh, Hinkel, my wife, I need not add another syllable,
for has not the chivalrous Alectryo, the Family Herald,
Bailiff, Public Notary, and Poet Laureate of our Fore-
fathers, crowed, and undersigned, as it were, my speech, in
protest of the tenancy of the dangerous Birds of Prey, and
in face of the expected young chickens ?"
At these words Dame Hinkel stooped to enter the low
door, and disappeared, with a deep sigh, into the hen-
house. For, alas the abode of Gockel, Marquis of
Dorking, and of Dame Hinkel, his wife, and of their
NE W FAIRY TALES FROM BRENTANO.
gentle daughter, Gackeleia, was a mere hen-house. An
old shield lay in a corner, filled with straw, in which Gallina,
the Family Hen, was sitting on thirty eggs; and an old
lance, laid crosswise, served as a roost, on which Alectryo
used to go to sleep; the hen-house, truth to say, being the
only place in the old castle which was habitable.
Many years ago this castle was one of the finest in all
the land, but the enemy had totally wrecked and destroyed
it in Gockel's great-grandfather's lifetime. And because
they were passionately fond of poultry, they killed and ate
all his splendid fowls, and nothing was left to the old man
but his best cock and his most beautiful hen, both of which
he had taken with him when he had hidden himself in the
forest. And these noble fowls, who had in their time taken
all the cups and prizes at the Poultry Shows in the Middle
Ages, were the ancestors of Alectryo and Gallina.
The forefathers of Gockel never entirely recovered
from this disaster, and, as a rule, were Lord High Com-
missioners of the Foreign and Inland Poultry and Pheasant
Department, at the neighboring court of Eggville.
Gockel had filled this post likewise, after the death of
his father; but the last king was such an extravagant
consumer of eggs that he never allowed any broods to
be hatched, because he ate up all the new-laid eggs him-
self. Gockel most energetically protested against this
abuse, but he so exasperated the king that he deposed him
as Lord High Commissioner, and ordered him to leave the
Hence poor old Gockel, Marquis of Dorking, and his
wife, Dame Hinkel, Countess of Langshan, with their
daughter, Gackeleia, arrived in the deepest poverty at the
ruined castle of their ancestors. Their only riches con-
sisted of the Family Poultry, Alectryo and Gallina, both of
whom he had inherited from his father. But Gockel
possessed what was worth more than even his ancestral
fowls, namely, a noble and proud heart in his bosom, and
a conscience free from blame.
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GACKELEIA. 19
Now Dame Hinkel, on the whole, gladly shared her
husband's poverty, but she often heaved bitter sighs as she
travelled through the wild forest, and all the splendours of
the city of Eggville started before her imagination. She
thought of all the shops, where butchers and bakers alter-
nated, and sadly she remembered the fattened calves, and
beeves, and sheep that were hung up in tempting array,
and in whose insides snowy napkins were spread out; and
she thought, too, of the bakers' shops, where white and
brown bread, and twists, and Sally Luns, and muffins, and
crumpets, and tea-cakes were piled up in the windows-a
Gackeleia, her little daughter, whom she led by the
hand, asked, too, over and over again : Mother, are there
any rusks and cracknels where we are going to ?" And
Mother Hinkel sighed deeply in answer. But Father
Gockel, who was leading the way, staff in hand, with
Alectryo and Gallina perching on either shoulder, turned
round and cheerfully said :
"No, my child Gackeleia, there are no rusks and
cracknels where we are going to. Besides, they are not
wholesome, and are apt to disagree with you. But, see,
wild strawberries, luscious red strawberries, are growing on
every side." And he pointed with his staff to some that
grew by the wayside, and these Gackeleia picked and ate
with much pleasure.
When Gackeleia had finished them she asked again:
" Mother, are there any dear little cake rabbits where we
are going to ?"
Then Mother Hinkel sighed again, more deeply than
before, and tears started to her eyes. But Father Gockel
said, kindly :
No, my child Gackeleia, there are no cake rabbits
where we are going to. Besides, they are not wholesome,
and are apt to disagree with you. But there are live white
rabbits, which are far nicer; and, if you are diligent, you
can knit your mother a pair of stockings, for her birth-
20 NEW FAIRY TALES FROM BRENTANO.
day, from their beautiful silken hair. Look there! I see
one running yonder! '
At this, Gackeleia rushed from her mother's side, and
ran after the rabbit, screaming : Give me your stockings !
Give me your stockings! But the rabbit had whisked
down a hole, and Gackeleia fell over the root of a tree,
which caused her to lament loudly. H er father rebuked
her impetuosity, and then showed her some ripe rasp-
berries which grew near the spot where she had stumbled.
After a short while Gackeleia asked again: "Mother
dear, are there any nice cake images where we are going
to-you know, those with currant eyes, and an almond nose,
and a raisin mouth ?" Upon this, her mother could not
restrain her tears any longer, and wept aloud. But Gockel
No, my child Gackeleia, there are no cake images
where we are going to. Besides, they are not wholesome,
and are apt to disagree with you. But there are numbers
of pretty wild birds, who sing most sweetly, and build nests,
and lay eggs, and feed their young. Those you can see,
and watch, and pet, and love, and share with them the
sweet wild cherries growing in the woods." And with that
he plucked a branch covered with ripe cherries from a tree,
and pacified the child.
But when Gackeleia, after some time, asked again:
Mother dear, is there as nice plum cake where we are
going to as in Eggville ? and Mother Hinkel wept yet
more copiously, Gockel, Marquis of Dorking, waxed ex-
ceedingly indignant, and, turning round, faced them, and
said, impressively :
Oh, Dame Hinkel, Countess of Langshan, thou hast
good reason for weeping, truly, in that our child Gackeleia
is such a gluttonous sweet-tooth, thinking of nothing but
rusks, and cracknels, and cake rabbits, and cake images,
and plum cakes! What will she do in future ? Well,
there is no help for it, and hunger will give her an appe-
tite, I doubt not! But be thou reasonable and do not
THE STORK FROM THE CASTLE WELCOMES GOCKEL.
TIE STORE Y OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GACKEILEIA 23
weep. God, who feeds the ravens, who cannot sow, will
not allow Father Gockel to perish, who can; and God, who
clothes the lilies of the field, who do not spin, will not let
Dame Hinkel perish, who can spin very nicely indeed;
nor the child Gackeleia, if she is industrious, and learns to
spin from her mother."
This speech of Count Gockel's was interrupted by a
great clattering and rattling in the bushes before them,
from which now came forth a large red-legged stork, who
looked at them seriously and soberly, clattered once more
with his beak, and then flew away.
Behold," said Father Gockel, "this friend of the
family has bid us welcome; he lives on the highest summit
of my castle, and we shall arrive there shortly. However,
that we may not be incommodated by having to choose
rooms from the spacious suites of our ancestral castle, I
will send on our trusted and confidential servants in ad-
vance, that they may make due selection."
And now he took the large ancestral Cock on his right
hand and the ancestral Hen on his left, and addressed them
with due solemnity, as befitted the occasion.
Listen, oh Alectryo, and you too, Gallina! You are
about, as we are, to enter the seat of our progenitors, and
I plainly see that you are equally moved with us, as is only
right and proper. That the happy event may be celebrated
in fitting style, I appoint you, Alectryo, oh noble Ancestral
Rooster, to be our Castellan, Major Domo, Seneschal,
Domestic Astronomer, Family Prophet, and Head Night
Watchman; and I earnestly hope and trust that you will
ably fulfil all your duties, without detriment to your position
as husband and father I expect the same of you, Gallina,
oh worthy Ancestral Hen, and herewith appoint you Lady
Custodian of the Family Keys, and Lady of the Bedcham-
bers, not doubting that you will superintend your respective
departments satisfactorily, without prejudice to your duties
as a wife and mother. If you agree with me, please to
confirm my words."
24 VNE W FAIR Y TALES FROMI BRENTAJVO.
Then Alectryo lifted up his head, opened his beak wide,
and crowed loud and lustily, while Gallina evinced her
emotion by cackling in touching strains.
Hereupon Gockel set them both down, saying: Now,
Sir Castellan and Lady of the Bedchambers, away with
you, and look out a proper suite of apartments for us, and
be sure and receive us at the entrance of the castle. Then
the Cock and the Hen flew on into the forest, and were out
of sight before you could say: Heigh, presto! off they go!"
Hereupon Gockel admonished his wife Hinkel, and his
child Gackeleia, to be content with their lot, and to be
industrious and tidy in their new home, in so kind a manner
that they both embraced the dear old father, and promised
to obey him in all things in the future.
And now they went on happily and merrily through
the beautiful forest; the sun set behind the trees, all around
grew silent and homelike, the evening breezes played gently
with the leaves, and Dame Hinkel sang with a sweet voice
a beautiful evening song, in which Gockel and Gackeleia
softly joined. When they had finished, the trees grew less
dense, and they saw the red evening sky flaming through
the empty arched windows of the castle, at the gate of
which they had emerged. Their reception was a most
Alectryo the Cock proudly sat on the stone escutcheon
of the house, shook his wings out and crowed, as veritable
court trumpeter, thrice into the quiet evening air. Then
all the little birds who lived in the old deserted building,
and who were thus warned of the arrival of the reigning
family, had slipped out of their nests and sang joyous songs
to welcome them without end, as they perched and swung
on the blooming lilacs and wild roses that scattered their
blossoms at their feet. The stork, too, perched on the top
wall of the castle and rattled away with good will and in
grand style, assisted by all his family; and thus it really
seemed as though they were received by a fanfare of
THE STORE Y OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GA CKE.LEIA. 25
Gockel, Hinkel, and Gackeleia bid all the birds wel-
come, and entered the old ruined chapel, where they knelt
down before the altar, which was carpeted with moss and
with the loveliest wild flowers, and was near the tombstone
of the ancestors of the Gockels. Here they thanked God
for having shielded them during their journey, and prayed
for further help and protection.
Whilst they prayed all the birds remained perfectly
silent, but when they rose from their knees Alectryo and
Gallina signed to them that they should take possession of
their rooms. Accordingly they followed them across the
courtyard, Chanticleer and his wife majestically leading the
way, with loud cackling, to the large and well-built fowl-
house, which was entered by a large door.
When Alectryo crossed the threshold he stooped his
head quite low, as if he were afraid of knocking against the
top of the door with his high red comb, though the door
was high enough for a big man to walk through; but this
was a-sign of his nobility, for all high nobles and crowned
heads invariably do the same thing.
In this fowl-house, of which the only window looked on
a small garden, the family settled themselves as best they
could. Gockel made a broom of green boughs, and swept
the floor with Hinkel; then they made a bed of moss and
dry leaves, and Gockel spread his mantle over it, and
Hinkel her apron. Then they went to sleep on it, Gockel
on the right, Hinkel on the left, with their little daughter
Gackeleia between them. The Cock and Hen settled
themselves in their corner, and, tired with their journey,
they all were soon asleep.
About midnight Alectryo stirred on his roost, and Gockel,
who did not sleep very soundly, because he had pondered
on all he was going to do to support himself and his family,
woke and looked about him to see what was going on.
Near the door, through the chinks of which the moonlight
was streaming brightly, he saw a large cat watching intently,
and now she suddenly made a spring into the room. At
NE W FAIR Y TALES FROM BRENTANO.
the same time Gockel heard a shrill squeaking, and felt
something running up the wide sleeves of his coat. The
Cock and Hen fluttered about screaming on their perches,
because they too had seen the cat, and Gockel quickly
jumped up and drove her out. Standing at the door he
gently pulled forth the animals that had run up his sleeve,
and then he saw that they were two wonderfully pretty
little white mice.
They were not a bit shy, but sat up on their hind legs,
and moved their fore paws, like a begging dog, which
pleased the old gentleman very much. He put them
carefully into his fur cap, and lay down again, putting the
cap beside him. He thought of giving the pretty little
animals, in the morning, to Gackeleia, who was so tired
that she, with her mother, had gone on sleeping all the time.
When Gockel was asleep once more, the two little mice
crept out of his fur cap and talked earnestly together; and
one of them said :
"Oh, Sissi, my beloved bride! you have to thank
yourself for the consequences of taking long moonshine
walks, my dear! Did I not warn you?" Then Sissi
"Oh, my beloved Piffi please don't scold me now! I
am trembling all over when I think of that dreadful cat,
and not a leaf stirs but I start and think I see her fiery
eyes!" Then Piffi tenderly said :
You need not be alarmed, for this good man has
thrown a big stone at the cat, and she nearly jumped into
the brook with fright."
"Alas !" said Sissi, I am afraid of our journey home.
We shall have to travel a week at least till we get to
your royal father; and now that the cats have found us
out, one will be lurking round every corner for us."
If there were only a bridge across the river," said
Piffi, "that runs half a day's journey from here, through
the forest, we should soon be home ; but as it is, we shall
have to go right round by the springs."
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GACKELEIA. 27
As they were talking thus they suddenly heard an owl
hooting outside; and, shivering with fright, they crept again
into the fur cap.
Goodness gracious! an owl!" whispered Sissi. "Oh,
if I only had stopped at home in my mother's palace!"
And here she began to cry. The mouse bridegroom was
very unhappy at this, and racked his brains how he should
encourage his bride and shield her from danger. At last
"Adored Sissi I think I have hit on an idea. If this
good man, who has protected us in his fur cap, only knew
of our distress, I am sure he would see us home safely.
Let us creep softly to his ear, and tell him suppliantly of
our distress. If you were to speak to him, my love, in
your sweetest tones, he cannot resist you; but be sure you
speak very softly, that he may not awaken, for it is only
in their slumber that human beings can understand us
Sissi readily agreed to this plan, and crept gently up to
Gockel's left ear, while Piffi went to the right ear; and
now they began whispering as softly and lowly as they
possibly could. Piffi sat up on his hind legs, and sang
the following lament in rhymes, not forgetting first to draw
his tail across his teeth, in order to render his voice the
"I am the Prince of Bacon Rind,
Engaged to a most fair Princess;
But oh a cat, huge and unkind,
Has brought us into this sad mess.
Oh, Gockel, take us over, pray,
Yon river, roaring deep and wide,
That we go not out of our way,
Myself and my illustrious bride.
We'll thank thee, Gockel, evermore,
Myself and eke my royal Pa-
Oh, take us to the other shore-
And so, too, will my royal Ma.
28 NE W FAIRY TALES FROM BRENTANO.
But stay !-why waste another word
Into your clumsy human ear?
It positively is absurd
That I, a Prince, stand begging here;
Whose Stilton Throne is very high-
A very monumental cheese !
Whose subjects to obey me fly
Whenever I but cough or sneeze !
Then take thy choice, and listen now:
If but a cat should cry or mew,
Frightening my bride, this is my vow:
War and defiance I bid you.
And so beware, and take good heed !
Given without reproach or fear;
And to ensure our journey's speed,
We bite our seal into thine ear."
After this rather unpolite speech, Prince Piffi of Bacon
Rind gave so sharp a bite into Gockel's ear that he awoke
with a loud cry, striking out with both his hands.
Both the mice fled in great perturbation into the fur cap
again, and Gockel said:
Well, I must say this is coming it rather strong, first
to ask for your help and then to bite your ear."
"Who has bitten your ear ?" asked Hinkel, who now
woke up too. "I expect you have been dreaming, my
That is very possible," said Gockel; and both went
off to sleep again.
Then Princess Sissi said to Prince Piffi:
"What on earth have you done to make the old man
so angry ?"
So Piffi related to her his whole speech, not without
some secret pride; for he was fond of speaking in rhyme.
But Sissi was very angry indeed when she heard it, and
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GACKELEIA. 29
I can scarcely believe my ears, Piffi Could anybody
have uttered a clumsier or sillier petition ? Why, the
commonest field-mouse would have behaved more decently.
In our position too! And here you must go defying the
only being who has the power to help us! Alas! all is lost
now! I plainly see that we shall both be sacrificed to your
ridiculous and ill-judged pride, and fall victims to the cat's
horrible claws! Oh me my young life Oh me would
that I had never seen you! Oh me! would that I had
never left my Mamma !"
Prince Piffi was in perfect despair at the reproaches
and lamentations of his affianced, and came down a con-
siderable peg from his late elation. So he humbly said:
"Alas! Sissi, your reproaches cut my very heart. I feel
you are right. But take courage, my dear; and go you
to his left ear, and assail him with your irresistible elo-
quence-remember, the left ear is nearest to the heart-
and I am sure he will give heed to thee. Oh, what a
miserable fool I am to succumb continually to those
wretched royal speeches and sentiments!"
Thereupon Sissi arose, saying:
Well, I will do my best."
Very, very softly she then slipped up to Gockel's left
ear, assumed a touching position, crossed her fore-paws on
her breast, curled her tail round her neck like a skipping-
rope, and whispered so softly and sweetly into his ear that
the beating of her frightened little heart was almost more
audible than her words :
Oh, noble lord behold me here,
Amazed, ashamed, before your ear I
Alas my bridegroom has just now
Most rude behaved. I must allow
His seal was anything but bland;
No wonder you flung out your hand I
You see, an only prince, he's spoiled
(Ah, use the rod nor spare the child !)
He's ne'er been tutored to beseech,
Hence rough, ungentle is his speech !
30 NE W FAIRY TALES FROM BREN7AANO.
His heart is kind and good enough,
But oh, his tongue is rough and gruff;
And when he is excited, lo,
His royal blood doth surge and flow.
But now he sees what he has done,
And doth repent with many a groan.
He's sitting in your cap of fur,
And shivers like a beaten cur;
For know that I, his royal bride,
Have told him this, and more beside
I made his Highness sing quite small,
And rubbed his head against the wall;
And now I've promised to excuse
Him to yourself-he can't but choose!
So pray forgive him, noble knight;
I'm Princess Sissi Almond Bite,
And I'm a wee mouse, sweet and white !
Let me pour out my heart to thee:
Oh, bring us home and set us free;
Remember how a mousey small
Released a lion from his thrall;
Who knows how near may be the day
When we your kindness can repay?
Oh if you knew how fair and white
I am a mouse, you'd love me quite !
My eyes are clear as jewels light;
My teeth are pearls and ivory bright;
My body's graceful, and my paws
Are small, rose-coloured; sharp my claws;
My ears are like a rosebud pair,
My nose a blossom sans compare;
My whiskers soft like downy silk,
And oh, my tail is white as milk!
My voice is tender as a flute,
And sweeter far than harp or lute;
Oh, let its tone thy bosom pierce !
Oh, save us from yon cat so fierce !
And now allow, in all submission,
In loving reverence and contrition,
That I a gentle kiss bestow
Upon your ear--my seal, you know-
A thing I've never done before,
And trust you will esteem the more.
And now at last bids thee good-night
The Princess Sissi Almond Bite."
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GACKELEIA. 31
And now she kissed Goc-kel's ear quite gently, and
because he whistled slightly through his nose she thought
that he told her, in the mouse language, the politest things
imaginable, and that he promised them his help for cer-
tain. She accordingly returned to the fur cap with a light
heart, and told Prince Piffi of the good result of her peti-
tion; whereupon her bridegroom tenderly embraced her.
And now the hour had come when black night turns
to a grey pall towards morning, and Altctryo, like a faithful
sentry, stretched out his neck far towards the dawning light,
to welcome it here for the first time, with a clarion-like
crowing. Then Gockel and his wife Hinkel awoke for
good, but Gackeleia went on sleeping.
Dame Hinkel then asked her husband why he had
fidgeted so during the night, and how on earth he came
to dream that he had been bitten in the ear. So Gockel
showed her the two little white mice in his fur cap, and
told her how they had fled to him for protection from the
cat, and how he had chased the latter away with a stone;
and how he dreamed afterwards that one mouse had asked
his help in a very independent and insolent fashion, biting
him in the ear to boot; but how, afterwards, the other
mouse had asked for help so prettily, and had kissed his
ear so respectfully, that he had promised her his aid.
" And that will I do at once," he added; I will take both
across the nearest stream, where they will be out of danger
and in their own country."
He was about to get up and set out on his journey,
when his wife said to him:
"Don't be so silly, Gockel! Here you go dreaming
that you promise something to a couple of white mice,
and then, when you are wide awake you actually want
to keep your promise. And for the sake of this dream-
promise you want to leave Gackeleia and myself in this
dreadful wilderness when we want your help so badly, to
clear up and tidy a bit! "
Thereupon Gockel answered her:
NE WV FAIRY TALES FIROMi BRENTANO.
"Apparently you are right, my dear, but a promise
is a promise, and must be kept, dreams or no dreams. I
have given the mice my word of honour, and that remains
as vividly in my memory as does the bite in mine ear."
Then Hinkel said:
If the bite was a dream, your word of honour was a
But Gockel angrily said:
Stuff and nonsense! A word of honour never can
be a dream; and I felt the bite so distinctly that I woke
with a cry, and positively my ear is burning yet!"
Let me see," said Hinkel; and, to her great surprise,
she saw the marks of five sharp little teeth in Gockel's ear.
When she had told him of this fact he would not be
detained a moment longer, but jumped up from bed, cut off
a large piece of bread, which he put in his pocket, and said
to his wife:
"You can begin clearing up, my dear Hinkel. Look
all round the castle, and the immediate neighbourhood, and
tell me how you would like to have things arranged when
I come back. Have a careful eye on Alectryo and
Gallina, because, as you have heard, there are wild cats
prowling about. I hope to be back by the afternoon."
He then took his staff, carefully placed his fur cap
(from which the two little white mice were cheerfully
squeaking good morning to him, only he did not under-
stand their language, being awake now) in his bosom, and
went forth into the dense forest, in the direction of the
When he had thus walked a couple of hours he sat
down to rest beside a spring, where he shared his bread
with his little fellow-travellers. Then he started on again,
and at last he reached the river, and walked up and down
to find a place suitable for crossing, but there was no bridge
or boat to be seen. So he stopped at the narrowest part,
where he could throw over a stone, and in this place he
determined to put the mice over. He then pulled out the
THE STORE Y OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GACKELEIA. 33
fur cap, opened it, looked in, and addressed them as
Good-bye, my dear little guests. Prince Piffi of
Bacon Rind, try and acquire better manners; yours are
not perfection by any means! And you, Princess Sissi
of Almond Bite, don't be quite so vain! However, you
are an excellent little animal withal. Farewell; remem-
ber me to your cousins and aunts, and do not forget
poor old Gockel, Marquis of Dorking."
The little mice could not make out why he was
bidding them good-bye already, as they were still on this
side of the water, and they could not see any boat or
bridge, far or near. So they assailed him with innumerable
shrill queries, of which Gockel did not understand a word.
Not taking any notice of their excitement, he wrapped
them upssafely in the fur cap, took a long aim, and happily
landed them on the other side, on a bank of soft grass.
When the cap opened from the fall, the little mice were
still perplexed as to how Gockel would bring them over;
but suddenly they saw that they were on the other side,
and then they joyfully scampered home as fast as their legs
could carry them, to relate their adventures.
On his way home, Gockel met three old Oriental
Natural Philosophers, who were leading an old billy-goat
and an old nanny-goat, to sell at a fair. These addressed
Gockel as follows :
Are you the owner of the old castle in this forest ?"
"Yes," said Gockel; I am the Marquis of Dorking."
Then they asked him whether he would sell them his
old Family Cock, and they would give him their big goat
instead. But Gockel answered:
I am no tailor; what should I do with your goat?
Make a gardener of him, pray you ? Can your goat crow,
perchance? My Cock is not a common domestic fowl;
he is an Armorial Cock, an Ancestral Cock; his father
crowed upon my father's grave, and he shall crow on mine.
Fare you well."
34 NE W FAIR Y TA LES FRiOM BRENT'ANO.
Then the three Natural Philosophers offered him the
nanny-goat, and when Gockel refused again they offered
him the billy and the nanny-goat. But Gockel laughed in
their faces, and went his way. Then they called after him:
We shall pass by again in four weeks' time, and then
we will ask you once more; who knows but what you
may be more inclined then to sell the Cock to us!"
Gockel arrived at home in the evening, and after a
good night's rest he began, early the next morning, xcth
the aid of his wife, Dame Hinkel, and his child Gacke-
leia, to establish himself in the desolate castle of his
forefathers, as well as he could. They made garden-beds
of all the plots of earth between the old castle walls, and
fenced and hedged in all the gaps. Then they carried
stones, and made staircases where it was necessary, and
Dame Hinkel carefully gathered all the seeds that she
found in the choked little garden, and sowed them in the
Gackeleia, on the other hand, was set to plait osiers
for nests, and a large chicken-coop for the little expected
chickens, and was told to lay the osiers into the spring,
which flowed in the castle yard, in order to soften them.
But Gackeleia was as careless, as curious, and as greedy as
a playful kitten; she climbed up trees, and looked into
every bird's nest; she picked and ate all the berries she
found; she made garlands of flowers, and crowned herself
with them; and, above all, she did not want to work. For
this reason, Alectryo often disturbed her with an indignant
crowing close to her ear, which frightened her back to her
work; and, in consequence, she took a great dislike to
the old Weather Prophet, and complained bitterly of him
to her mother.
Dame Hinkel, too, had no love to spare for Alectryo,
and for this reason. When she was tired from working in
the garden, she used to sit down on a stone to rest, and
think wistfully of all the butchers' and bakers' shops in
Eggville. Then Alectryo, like a troublesome steward,
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GACKELEIA. 35
would commence scratching and crowing on the garden-
beds which were still unfinished, and so remind her of her
work. One day she had fallen asleep thus, and had for-
gotten to give poor Gallina, who was sitting on her eggs,
some fresh water and food. This, of course, was very
wrong indeed of her, because I am sure she would not
have liked any one to forget her Be that as it may,
she had fallen asleep, as I have said, and dreamed so
vividly of all the Eggville good things, that she said,
"Oh! this is no dream, I am sure; this is reality."
Just then Alectryo crowed so shrilly and sharply at her
ears that she awoke in a great fright, and tumbled off her
stone on to the hard ground. So she disliked honest old
Alectryo still more than she did before, and chased him
away wherever she happened to be working. She would
have liked to cut his throat, because he turned her out of
bed every morning at three o'clock; but, unfortunately, he
could not be spared, as Gockel had put all his hopes on
the young brood about to be hatched.
Gockel spent nearly all his days hunting in the forest,
and returned home in the evening, after he had exchanged
his booty for bread and victuals in the nearest villages.
Then Alectryo used to fly to meet him, fluttering his wings,
and crowing and cackling very excitedly, as though he
wanted to complain of Hinkel and Gackeleia on account of
their laziness. These complained in their turn of Alec-
tryo, and Gockel instituted a strict and searching inves-
tigation, with the general result of a good scolding for
Hinkel and Gackeleia; so that both began hating the
poor old cock like poison.
This continued until the hen Gallina had laid thirty
eggs, upon which she instantly commenced sitting. On
this brood Gockel placed all his future hopes, and it was
for this reason that he was so angry with his wife Hinkel,
when she advocated the petition of the birds of prey, who
wanted to be allowed to build in the castle, and which
NE W FAIR Y TALES FROM BRENTAN7O.
caused him to give her so severe a reprimand as I related
at the beginning of my story.
Gockel's joy when the hen began to sit was very great,
and after a time, when he expected the young chickens
to hatch every day, he went to the nearest town to buy
grits for them. Before starting, he particularly enjoined
Dame Hinkel and Gackeleia to take great care of Gallina,
that she should not want for anything.
He started at midnight, because he had a long journey
But Dame Hinkel, who wanted to have a good sound
sleep without any interruption, caught Alectryo, who was
sitting on his perch fast asleep, and put him into a dark
sack, that he might not see the dawn and waken her with
his crowing. She then laid herself down, and began
sleeping like a dormouse. But her daughter Gackeleia did
not sleep long, for she too was eager for her father to depart,
in order that she might enjoy a pleasure which she was
looking forward to with all her heart. In her rambles over
the old castle she had found, in a distant corner, a cat with
seven kittens, and of this discovery she had not told her
father and mother a single word ; but Gackeleia was never
tired of playing with the pretty little kittens, and spent all
her spare time with them. Therefore, as soon as her
mother was asleep, she rose from her sic, very glad that
Alectryo could not betray her, for she had seen him put
into a sack. But as she passed Gallina, lo! all the thirty
eggs had turned into the dearest little chickens, which
chirped and crept under the wings their mother spread
over them; and then they looked out, with their sweet
little callow heads, from their feathery stronghold! Oh,
it was the sweetest sight imaginable, and Gackeleia was
half wild with joy. At first she wanted to wake her
mother, but then she decided that she would tell the great
news first to the kittens, because she thought they would
be as pleased as herself with the pretty little chickens.
She therefore ran as fast as she could to the nest of
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GAICELEIA. 37
kittens, and when the old cat came to meet her, arching
her back, and purring gently round her, and all the seven
little kittens came out and meekly put up their backs
and purred round her, Gackeleia's heart never misgave her,
and she said:
"Oh, Caterwauley! such fun! Gallina, our hen, has
hatched thirty dear little yellow ducks of chickens, and I've
come round to tell you, because I thought you would be
sure to like to know, and not one of them is bigger than a
mouse. Just fancy! "
When the old cat heard this, she was so anxious to see
the dear little chickens, that her eyes sparkled and flashed
all sorts of colours. Then Gackeleia told her:
If you will promise to step very softly and not to
mew, so as not to wake mother, I will show you the sweet
little things. And your kittens may come too, because I
know they will love to see them."
Then Caterwauley and her seven kittens ran eagerly
before Gackeleia, and when they had arrived at the fowl-
house, she once more enjoined them to be sure and mind
what she had told them; and then she gently opened the
door. But Caterwauley could not contain herself any
longer, and with one jump she was on poor Gallina, and
murdered her; and the seven kittens were as quickly done
with the chickens.
The screaming of Gackeleia and of the dying hen and
chickens awoke Dame Hinkel, who was still fast asleep
in bed, and with dismay she saw all their hopes strangled
by the cruel cats, who now ran away with their prey.
Gackeleia and her mother wept and wrung their hands,
and poor Alectryo, who had heard the woeful cries of his
family, fluttered about in his sack, screaming fiercely.
Gackeleia was nearly dead with fright; she clasped her
mother's knees, and kept on crying: Oh dear, oh dear,
whatever shall I do? My father, oh my father! What-
ever will Father Gockel say ? Oh, I'm sure he'll kill me i
Mother, dear mother, help your poor Gackeleia!"
NE W FAIR Y TALES FROM BRENTAJNO.
Dame Hinkel was hardly less frightened than Gacke-
leia herself, and feared, no less than she, the just anger of
Gockel; because she had known of the cats too, and had
not said a word about them, and she had put the watchful
Alectryo into the sack besides.
When she reflected on this, she suddenly bethought her
that she would accuse Alectryo of having murdered his
young brood, and hoped thus to turn Gockel's anger on to
this inconvenient watchman.
She therefore took the sack in which Alectryo fluttered
about, and said to her daughter :
Come along, Gackeleia, we will follow your father,
and take Alectryo as the murderer of Gallina and his
young family to him. He may do what he likes with him! "
And so they hastened to come up with Gockel, who
was beating about the forest to see whether he could catch
some game, which he wanted to exchange for grits, as we
know. Presently they caught sight of him among the
bushes, taking two snipe out of a spring, and putting
them into his game-bag; and forthwith they commenced to
cry and lament bitterly.
When he saw them from afar, Gockel called out
Now, thank heaven, you are weeping with joy, I do
not doubt, and Gallina has hatched thirty beautiful little
chickens! Is that not so ?"
"Yes, oh yes," cried Dame Hinkel, but-- "
"And all were yellow and had tufts on their heads, I
know," interrupted Gockel, joyfully.
"Alas!" cried out Gackeleia, "yes, they had dear little
tufts, every one of them, but---"
But what ?" asked Gockel. If Gallina hatched thirty
chickens, and all had tufts on their heads, what are you
crying for? Thirty hens, if each again lay thirty eggs, will
make nine hundred hens in a year's time."
Then Hinkel said:
Out, and alas a pretty reckoning indeed Alectryo,
THIE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GA CKELEIA. 39
your fine chanticleer, has killed and eaten Gallina, the thirty
chickens, and the nine hundred future hens as well! Here
he is! I have put him in a sack, do what you like with
him. I never wish to see him again!"
With these words, she threw down the sack with Alec-
tryo at the feet of Gockel, who was perfectly petrified with
Gockel then began to rave with grief, when he compre-
hended the news which destroyed all his cherished hopes.
Alas," cried he, "now I give up all indeed for lost!
Fortune is forsaking my race, and all my progenitors and
descendants are deceived by this wretched Alectryo, whom
we have honoured above man and all beasts. Oh, if I had
only sold him the other day to the three Oriental Natural
Philosophers for their two goats, we would have had
something, at any rate !"
When Dame Hinkel heard that he might have driven
so good a bargain for Alectryo, she bitterly reproached
Gockel, who grew more and more sad. At last he drew
forth his old parchment patent of nobility, and said to his
Look here, Hinkel, I will now tell you what it is that
has always caused me to honour Alectryo. Behold here,
on this box of boxwood, containing the parchment, are
engraven some lines, which have always induced my an-
cestors and myself to expect our fortune from the race of
Alectryo." With that he read the words:
"To Gockel luck
Doth Fowl bring, spite
He had scarcely spoken the last words, when the three
old Orientals, who had wanted to buy Alectryo, stepped out
of the bushes and said :
40 N-E W FAIRY TALES FROM BRENIANO.
What is your wish, my Lord of Dorking ? "
"What do you mean by intruding on me ?" asked
But they answered:
My Lord, you called us by name, or we should not
be here; for we are called Cut Throat, Split Crop, Stone
Buy, and you mentioned all three names. Perhaps you
wish your coat-of-arms to be engraved on a signet, for we
are seal engravers as well, and lo, you are holding your
escutcheon even now."
Alas," said Gockel, I would fain destroy my coat-of-
arms altogether, for Alectryo, whose image is engraven on
it, has most shamefully deceived us." And so he told them
his whole misfortune.
"Your Lordship can now see," said the three Philo-
sophical Seal Engravers, "how well disposed we were
towards you when we wanted to buy the cock from you!
Did we not say that perhaps you would soon be glad to be
rid of him, if only any one would have him ? "
"How so? Well disposed, say you!" cried Gockel;
"how could you know that Alectryo would cause such dread
disaster ? "
Then one of the old men answered:
You can read for yourself; this very disaster is plainly
cut here on your capsule; for our forefathers themselves
manufactured this coat-of-arms, and therefore cut their own
names, 'Cut Throat, Split Crop, and Stone Buy,' under this
old prophecy of evil. And as we had heard that your Ex-
cellency had become poor, we wanted to buy Alectryo of
you, to shield you from disaster-for the simple reason that
your forefathers gave our forefathers bread, when they
employed them in making their coat-of-arms. Hence
they also wrote, 'Bread give,' at the bottom. That is
This is very curious," said Gockel, "but I do not see
any prophecy of evil in the passage, but the contrary!
Does it not say:
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GACKELEIA. 41
"' To Gockel luck
Doth Fowl bring, spite
"And does that not plainly mean, that the cock will bring
luck to the race of Gockel, spite of ingratitude ?"
Why, yes," said the second old man, "but then this
passage is, like all similar ones, worded mysteriously; we,
as Engravers, are naturally up to all that. The real meaning
all depends in such cases on a comma, more or less, and lo,
now the passage reads:
"'To Gockel Luck!
Do h Fowl bring spite!
viz., first of all a pious wish: 'To Gockel luck!'--then,
'Doth fowl bring spite.' Well, did not your bird bring very
great spite upon you ? Ending with the exclamation, 'Oh,
Poor Gockel was now quite convinced of the truth of
this explanation, and of his misfortune. He begged the
three old men to give him their two goats for Alectryo;
but they declined to do so now, saying:
"What's the use of the cock to us ? He's a bird of ill-
luck; he can do us harm; and besides, who would eat such
an ill-omened fowl? On the other hand, if he remains
alive, he might crow down misfortune on one's head Still,
we will have a look at him, for no one buys a pig in a poke,
still less a rooster."
Then Gockel drew forth Alectryo from his sack, and
Oh, Alectryo, Alectryo! how bitterly hast thou
grieved me "
And Alectryo drooped his head and wings, and was
very sad. But when one of the old men wanted to feel his
crop, he turned furious. All his feathers bristled up, and he
hacked, and bit, and screamed, and fluttered with his wings
42 NE W FAIR Y TALES FROM BRENTANO.
so violently, that the old man retired very quickly, and
Gockel was hardly able to hold him.
Dear, dear !" said the old Orientals, what a terrible
monster, to be sure! It wants to eat us; that's all his evil
conscience! Tut, tut, who would buy him ?"
Then Gockel offered to sell him at a still lower price,
and at last they said to him:
If you will carry this cock home for us, we will give
you nine ells of beautiful ribbon, that you may bind your
pigtail with it, as beseems your Excellency;" and Gockel
agreed to this, only to get something for Alectryo.
But Dame Hinkel and Gackeleia had listened to all
this in silence, and went home together, with a guilty
conscience; for they knew that the old Orientals were not
speaking the truth.
Then Gockel took Alectryo under his arm, and sadly
followed the three Philosophical Engravers to their
dwelling. At first they walked pretty close to Gockel,
but, because the cock bit and screamed at them continu-
ally, they told him to walk some paces behind them, with the
Then Gockel heard how the three always said to each
other, Split Crop, Stone Buy, Cut Throat;" and then
they quarrelled and cried what sounded like, No, I Stone
Buy; no, you Split Crop; no, you Cut Throat!" And
when Gockel asked them why they always called each
other names, and quarrelled among themselves, they
"Why, the truth is, none of us care to kill that cock of
yours, he's such a very ferocious beast; but if you will kill
him for us, we will give you his comb, his feet and spurs,
and his tail, which you can put into your cap, as a memento.
The best thing would be to wring his neck quietly, while
you are carrying him-do you see?"
"Very well," said Gockel, and seized poor Alectryo by
In doing so he felt something very hard in his crop,
THE STORY OF GOCIEL, HINIKEL, AND GACKELEIA. 43
and Alectryo struggled so fiercely, that the three old men
were very frightened, and said to Gockel:
Please walk a good bit behind us."
Gockel did so, and when he seized Alectryo's throat he
again felt the hard substance, and could not make out what
it possibly could be. Suddenly the cock distinctly and
plainly spoke aloud:
"Dearest Gockel, hear me pray,
Do not wring my neck, I say;
Cut it with thy sword so bright,
As beseems a noble knight."
Gockel was perfectly amazed when he heard Alectryo
speaking, and not a little touched; and he quickly deter-
mined not to sell a wonderful bird that could talk, for nine
ells of ribbon. So he called out loudly that they should
step into the bushes on the left, as he was about to kill the
The three Orientals quickly jumped into the brushwood,
right into a large pit covered with boughs, which Gockel
knew very well, for he had dug it himself. So, of course,
the three Natural Philosophical Engravers tumbled in, and
called to Gockel to help them out again. But Gockel did
not reply, and softly crept near to the pit to hear what they
"Alas," cried out one, "this is the consequence! Whoso
diggeth a pit for others falls in himself; all our labour and
trouble, and the wonderful magic stone in the cock's crop,
is lost to us. Gockel must have found out that 'Cut Throat,
Split Crop, Stone Buy, and Bread Give' are not our names,
and that they only mean that you should cut the cock's
throat and open his crop, in order to find the costly stone
inside it, which gives not only bread, but all you desire and
wish for : youth, riches, fortune, and all the good things of
Then the second lamented:
Oh, woe is us, that we ever heard of the jewel in the
44 NE W FAIR Y TALES FROM BRENTANO.
bird's crop! Oh, would that our fathers had never dug for
treasure in Gockel's old castle, and there found the whole
secret engraven on a stone! Then we should have at
least had peace. Now, alas, the magic stone will be ever
before our eyes, and we shall ever bewail our lost chance!"
And now the third Seal Engraver commenced his
"Oh, ill-starred misadventure! All our trouble and
labour has been in vain! What an immense time it took
to work upon the King of Eggville and his ministers;
what money have we not spent on the latter, and all to
oust Gockel from his high position, and drive him forth
into poverty, in order that we might then buy Alectryo!
Why, our parents only learnt the business of seal en-
graving to be able to read the old verse on the escutcheon ;
and what an immense expenditure of time and natural
philosophy did it not cost us to understand the words in
their full significance All is lost, and I am sadly afraid
that Gockel is somewhere laughing at us, sitting in this
detestable hole If only we were out of this horrid pit,
which I am sure is damp! And who will now pay me for
my cat, which, together with her seven kittens, I bought
with my own money, and put into the old castle to kill
Gallina and her chickens, and cause Gockel, to sell Alec-
tryo ? Who will pay me for the cat? I want my money
for the cat! I wish I had had her skinned. She would
have sold for a hare, and I could have sold her skin
besides. I want my money for that cat!"
Gockel could not help laughing at this noise, and one
of the Seal Engravers thought that one of his comrades
was laughing at him, and so he hit him. Then this one
called out and said it had been the other one, so he hit the
other one, and presently there was quite a lively little boxing
match going on below, while Gockel took his way home with
Alectryo, lost in deep thought.
He had learnt a great deal in this short time: the false-
hood of his wife Hinkel, and of little Gackeleia; the secret
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GACKELEIA. 45
of the old stone buried in his castle, and of the magic jewel
in Alectryo's crop; and, finally, the whole swindle of the
three Oriental Natural Philosophical Seal Engravers. All
this rendered him very pensive and melancholy, and he
pressed old Alectryo over and over again to his heart,
No, my beloved, venerable, most rare Alectryo! If
thou hadst the philosopher's stone itself, and Solomon's
seal to boot, in thy crop, my hand should never kill thee,
and while Gockel does not starve, thou shalt not die!"
Gockel then offered Alectryo some bread to eat, but he
shook his head, and sadly spoke:
"Alectryo's grief is dire and dread,
Gallina dead, thirty chickens dead,
Alectryo will eat no more bread.
He fain would die by a knightly sword,
As is the right of a noble lord.
He wants a fair trial, honest and free,
Where Gockel of Dorking the judge shall be,
And speak o'er the cat his just decree.
Alectryo's heart is a lump of lead,
Do thou cut off his noble head,
And take the stone when he is dead."
"Alas! dear Alectryo," said Gockel, with bitter tears,
" I shall speak a dread judgment on the cat, you may be
sure, and Gallina and her thirty chickens shall assuredly be
avenged, and what is left of them shall have a fair burial.
But thou, thou must ever remain with me."
But Alectryo always repeated the same thing, that
he.wished to die, and that if Gockel refused to decapitate
him, he would starve himself to death. -He added that
Gockel would find all details written on the old stone
buried within the chapel, and then he would know what he
had to do. Lastly, he wound up by saying again that he
wished Gockel to cut off his head with his old family sword.
It was night when Gockel reached his castle, and his
wife and daughter were already fast asleep, as they did
46 NE W FAIR Y TALES FROM BRENTANO.
not expect Gockel back that night, but thought he had
gone with the three Buyers to the next town. The first
thing Gockel did was to seize the cat and her young ones,
Alectryo showing him the way, and Gockel put them all
into the same sack in which poor Alectryo had been con-
Oh! how sad were Gockel and Alectryo when they
saw the feathers and remains of poor Gallina and her
thirty chickens strewn about! They wept bitterly together,
and Alectryo carefully picked up with his beak all the
feathers and bones of his departed wife and family, and
deposited them in a little heap.
And now Alectryo led old Gockel into the ruined
chapel, and began scratching furiously with his feet on
the ground before the altar. Gockel perfectly understood
him, and began to dig there. He soon discovered a large
marble slab, on which was written that, many, many years
ago, an ancestor of Gockel's had possessed a jewel from the
ring of King Solomon ; but that, when the castle was de-
stroyed, the Alectryo of that time, whom the Gockel family
always were very proud of, swallowed the rare gem, lest
it should fall into the hands of the enemy. But his master
would not kill the bird, as it was a solemn law in the
Gockel family never to kill the cock until he himself should
demand his death.
When Gockel had read this inscription he said:
Behold, my dear Alectryo You may read yourself
that it is unlawful for me to kill you ; but tell me how the
wondrous stone came into your possession."
Then Alectryo answered :
My great grandpa cast up the ring in death,
Then grandfather swallowed it in the same breath;
Grandfather cast up the ring in death,
My father then swallowed it in the same breath;
My father cast up the ring in death,
Then I did swallow it in the same breath;
And now Alectryo casts it up too,
The ring must return to its master true.
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GACKELEIA. 47
Gallina dead, thirty chickens dead,
Alectryo will eat no more bread;
He fain would die by a knightly sword,
As is the right of a noble lord;
The prophecy on your seal runs clear,
It now is fulfilled, and my end is near."
"Well," said Gockel, "then I will hold to-morrow
morning early a strict investigation, and I promise you
stern satisfaction for the death of your wife and children.
After that I will do to you as you desire."
Then Gockel sat himself down on the steps of the altar,
and Alectryo carried all the feathers and bones of Gallina
and her chickens into the chapel, and made a little funeral
pyre of them, putting all the feathers in the middle of the
But when day began to dawn Alectryo flew on to the
highest castle wall, and crowed three times so loudly in the
clear morning air that his clarion sounded even as a trumpet
blast, and all the birds put their heads out of their nests,
to hear what he would proclaim. When they heard that
he summoned them to the trial of the cruel and murderous
cat, presided over by Gockel, Marquis of Dorking, they
gave vent to their joy with a thousand glad voices. They
all shook out their feathers and polished their beaks, to
utter their complaints the better; and then they flew into
the empty windows, on the tops of broken pillars, on the
projections of walls, and on the bushes and trees growing
round about, and there they awaited the opening of the trial.
When all the birds were assembled Alectryo went to
the fowl-house, where Hinkel and Gackeleia were still
sleeping ; and, as he thought of the murder of poor Gallina,
he crowed so angrily into the hen-house and beat his wings
so wrathfully that Hinkel and Gackeleia woke up in a great
fright, and both cried out simultaneously :
Oh dear! oh dear! If that horrid Alectryo has not
come back again! He has escaped from father in the
forest, and we must catch him at once!"
48 NE W FAIR Y TALES FROIM2 BRENTANO.
With that, they jumped up and pursued Alectryo, brand.
fishing their aprons; but he ran, as fast as his legs would
carry him, into the chapel, and, oh how frightened were
Hinkel and Gackeleia, to be sure, when they saw Gockel
sitting on the steps of the altar, with stern and gloomy
countenance, and holding his large rusty family sword be-
tween his knees!
They were just going to ask him when he had come
back, but he ordered them to be silent, and pointed out
where they were to stand with so solemn a mien, that they
looked at each other in sheer astonishment.
Meanwhile, Alectryo walked up and down very sadly
before Gockel with bent head, like some one who ponders
dejectedly on grave and complicated matters. Nay, he
even looked as though he laid his hands on his back.
Gockel, too, looked straight before him in solemn silence,
and not a bird as much as stirred a feather.
At last Gockel arose, and with his sword cut the air
around him, north, south, east, and west, exclaiming:
"I hold and administer judgment right;
When Gockel of Dorking doth wield his might,
And speaks his doom on the hapless wight!"
When he had spoken these words, Alectryo flew on to
Gockel's shoulder, and shrilly crowed three times. Dame
Hinkel could not understand all these proceedings, and sud-
denly called out:
Oh, Gockel, my dear husband, what is it that you are
doing? Alas, he is demented!"
But again Gockel signed to her to be'silent, and said :
Who comes to accuse, who comes for the Right ? "
Then Alectryo flew down, and, with bowed head, said:
"'Tis I complain, thy squire and knight!"
Oh me, how Hinkel's and Gackeleia's conscience smote
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINErEL, AND GA CKELEIA. 49
them when they heard that Alectryo could speak! They
trembled in their very shoes, lest all should be found out;
and no wonder. Then Gockel replied:
"Alectryo, what have they done to thee ?"
Alectryo thereupon went to the funeral pyre of Gallina,
"Oh, master, these bones and feathers see !
They were my wife and children small;
The cat hath torn them to pieces all,
And ever I cry, in bitter woe,
Again and again, poor Alectryo !"
Thereupon he groaned most dismally, and Gockel said:
"Alectryo, noble chanticleer !
You did it yourself, is what I did hear.
Now bring your witnesses, one and two,
To prove your complaint is just and true."
Then Alectryo answered:
"Because yon sluggards I woke ere day,
In a sack they caught me, and put me away;
I only have heard, for I could not see
When the cruel disaster happened to me.
But I ask all the birds, both large and small,
To be my witnesses true withal."
Then all the birds began talking, singing, twittering,
and chirping all together, till Gockel admonished them to
be quiet, as each would be heard in his turn. He then
requested Mrs. Swallow to be the first witness, who flew
up to Gockel and twittered very fast:
Most honoured Lord and Gentlemen Never, never
do I want to see again how that horrid savage cat and her
kittens came bounding, dancing, and prancing up, and all of
a sudden tore the poor mother hen and her dear little
NE W FAIRY TALES FROM BRENTANO.
chickens into a thousand tiddy, iddy, little bits and pieces!
I was so frightened, my Lord and Gentlemen, I do assure
you, that I ran the comb into the hair of my youngest boy ;
for I always comb them myself, my Lord and Gentlemen,
I do, indeed, every morning, and wash them, too. And I
was so unnerved that I stuck a pin into the shirt collar of
my eldest boy, I am ashamed to say, and pricked him.
You will ask, 'Why stick shirt collars with a pin, Mrs.
Swallow ? Why not buttons ?' But, bless you, my Lord
and Gentlemen, only a mother knows how impatient young
swallows are; and pins I can just get in surreptitiously, but
sew on buttons-never! Well, as I was saying, lo and
behold, out and alas, and woe is me, our dear, busy, brisk,
active, scratching, pecking Gallina is no more; and her dear
little, chirping, tripping nestlings are gone too; and the
nest, late so full and swarming, is empty and desolate.
Ah me! Never, never would I share the guilty conscience
of those that knew of the foul deed; not for any flies, or
worms, or grubs untold, my Lord and Gentlemen, so help
When the little swallow had finished her impassjpned
testimony, Alectryo crowed again :
"Thus ever I cry, in bitter woe,
Again and again, poor Alectryo !"
At the reproachful crowing of the poor bird, Dame
Hinkel and Gackeleia began to feel very bad indeed.
Gockel now called on the next bird who had seen the
murder to bear witness; and the dear little Robin Red-
breast flew on to a wild rose-bush and said:
On the castle's highest tower,
In the clear bright morning hour,
I did sing my gladsome lay,
Welcoming the beam of day.
On my breast it flashed, all sparkling,
Night on earth still brooded darkling;
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GACKELEIA. 51
And neathh murky walls below,
I saw cats' eyes watch and glow.
Grateful, then, and glad was I
That my nest was built on high.
Next I saw the cat steal wily,
Followed by her kittens, slyly;
In the shed they disappear,
Shrieks heartrending fill the air,
And I knew the cause-oh, dear I
For the cats from out the shed
Rushed, with dying chicks, and dead,
Tearing them to scrap and shred !
Ah, then, was I sore distressed,
Flew down to my little nest,
And there spread my covering wings
Over my wee bairnie things.
Yes, I saw the murder grim,
And my eyes grew moist and dim,
And my heart near broke in twain
At the sight, with grief and pain."
After these words Alectryo crowed again most dejectedly:
Thus ever I cry, in bitter woe,
Again and again, poor Alectryo "
Then Gockel heard the testimony of all the other birds,
from the Stork down to the Titmouse ; and they all related,
in their fashion, how they had witnessed the murder of
poor Gallina. But when Gockel now turned round to
Hinkel and Gackeleia, and sorrowfully asked them both
how they possibly could have permitted such a thing to
happen, as Gallina's nest was close to their bed, and also
why they had told him such a falsehood, and put it all on
the innocent Alectryo, both fell on their knees and confessed
their wrong-doing, with many bitter tears, promising never
to do it again. Gockel reprimanded them severely, and
then begged Alectryo to impose their punishment himself.
But that truly noble bird forgave them freely, and
begged that they should be forgiven. But Gockel said :
Dame Hinkel! thy punishment shall consist in my
52 VNE W FAIR Y TALES FROMi BRENTiANO.
putting a chicken bone and cat's paw in yours and Gacke-
leia's coat-of-arms, as a lasting remembrance of your wicked
carelessness; moreover, because Gackeleia surreptitiously
played with the kittens and caused this great misfortune
by her lamentable tomfoolery, she shall never in all her life
play with a doll. This is my decree."
Alas! then Dame Hinkel and Gackeleia began weeping,
and no mistake; but Gockel told Alectryo to bring up the
executioner to kill the cat and her young. Then Alectryo
and all the assembled birds cried :
That is no other than the owl, the big old horned owl,
who sits with her owlets in the ivy bush yonder !" And
so they instantly fetched her to the seat of judgment.
As the old owl with her three owlets, hated and black-
balled by all the other birds, came rustling in with her
heavy wings, cracking and crunching her fierce beak, she
cried: "Tu-whit! Tu-whoo! and turned her eyes all
manner of unearthly ways. All the little birds flew trem-
bling into places of shelter; Gackeleia screamed and hid her
head under her mother's apron ; and Mother Hinkel her-
self shut her eyes and turned pale.
But Gockel laid the sack containing the cruel cat and
her kittens before the owl, who rustled solemnly up to it
with her three owlets and said :
To carry out sentence I forthwith appear,
My three sons likewise to help me are here
Now listen, oh Cat, thou hapless sinner,
Thou hast eaten last night thy last sad dinner.
Now listen, ye kittens, one and all,
You also are done for, so pray don't squall!
Come, Tearem, and Sniffblood, and Breakneck, away !
Let me see what you three can do to-day."
Then they were about to open the sack and execute the
cats before everybody's eyes, but Gackeleia screamed so
dreadfully that Gockel ordered the owls to carry the sack
home and fulfil their office there, which they forthwith did.
THE OLD OWL WITH HER THREE OWLETS CAME RUSTLING IN.
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, IIlNEEL, AND GACKELEIA. 55
When the horrible spectacle had thus been avoided,
Alectryo walked up to Gockel and demanded that he
should cut off his head with his sword, take out the magic
stone, and then burn him, together with the remains of
Gallina and her chickens. Gockel still refused for a long
time to comply with his request, but as Alectryo persisted
and would not be refused, declaring that otherwise he would
starve himself to death, Gockel at last promised to kill him.
He embraced the noble bird once-more with all his heart;
then Alectryo stretched his neck far out, and crowed for
the last time with a loud and thrilling voice. Gockel mean7
while brandished his long sword, and then cut right through
Alectryo's neck with so clean a cut that the jewel fell at his
feet and Alectryo died at the same time.
All those present wept bitterly, and placed Alectryo on
the remains of Gallina; while all the birds brought twigs
and branches and piled them up high around them. Then
Gockel set the fuel on fire, and all was burned to ashes ; but
from the flames they saw the image of a cock rising like
a little golden cloud, and gently floating away. Gockel then
buried the ashes and covered the stone with the inscrip-
tion, "again with earth," and then he made the following
beautiful speech on the merits and noble spirit of the late
Alectryo, Hinkel and Gackeleia sobbing very heartily as he
spoke. And this is what Gockel said:
Oh, how cheering and useful is the cock's crowing!
This faithful retainer wakes the slumberers, admonishes the
anxious, and comforts the wanderer. He proclaims the hour
of the night, scares the thief and housebreaker, and gladdens
the sailor on the desolate ocean-for he announces the
dawn when all high winds are hushed. He awakens the
pious to prayer, and calls to the scholar to seek his books
by daylight. He exhorts the sinner, to repentance, like
Peter. His cry comforts the hearts of the sick. The lion,
who fears no creature, is afraid of the cock, and flies at sight
of him and at the sound of his voice. Therefore he has
been exalted above all other animals, and wise men have
56 NE WT FAIR Y TALES FRiOMf BRENTA O.
put his golden image on the summits of towers and
steeples. Oh, how laudable is the cock's example Before
he crows, to awaken men from their slumbers, he beats his
sides with his wings, plainly showing that a teacher of truth
himself must practise virtue ere he teach it to others.
Proud and haughty is the cock ; he knows the course of the
stars, and so he frequently lifts up his head to the sky. His
cry is prophetic, he foretells weather, and announces the
time. As an emblem of vigilance and combativeness, he
is triumphantly placed by soldiers on their baggage waggons
that they may know the time, and relieve their vigils at
stated hours. At dusk, when the cock and his hens go to
roost on their perches, they put out the night watch; three
hours before midnight the cock stirs, and the watch is
changed; at midnight he crows, and they set the third
watch; and three hours before dawn his crow proclaims
the coming day, and calls up the fourth watch. The cock is
a noble and knightly bird. His head is decorated with a
tuft and a helmet, while his breast glitters as with an
iridescent riband, and on his foot proudly clanks a spur.
He suffers no insult to his ladies, and fights on their
behalf as a matter of life and death. Even wounded
and bleeding, he announces his victory with a triumphant
blast. Strange and wonderful are the ways of Chanticleer;
when he goes through a gateway, high enough to admit a
rider on horseback, he stoops his head lest his comb should
touch, for he feels his inward nobility. How affectionate is
Chanticleer! He sings cheering ditties to hens laying their
eggs, and if a sitting hen should die he takes her place,
and then rears up his chickens, never crowing once; for
such are the duties of a foster-mother I could still tell you
a great deal more about him--"
But here he was interrupted by the loud and violent
sobbing of his wife Hinkel and little Gackeleia, and so he
considerately stopped. All the little birds were likewise
much moved, and wept silently, because they did not think
it polite to make such a noise. But Hinkel and Gackeleia
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GACKELEIA. 57
went on crying the whole day, on and off, and would not
be consoled for the death of Gallina and Alectryo. Gockel
gave them another affectionate exhortation, and they pro-
mised amendment. And so, as the whole family was
tired out with weeping and exhorting, they went to bed
early at the end of this sad day, and were soon fast asleep.
When Gockel awoke in the night he bethought him of
his wife Hinkel and his daughter Gackeleia with great
love and affection, and decided to give them a great treat
and unexpected pleasure, after the melancholy depression
of the previous day, and at the same time to give the
magic stone out of Alectryo's crop a trial. So he took the
Ring out of his pocket, put it on his finger, and began
turning it round and round, with the words:
"Solomon, thou sapient King,
Whom, by power of this Ring,
All the Spirits do obey,
Grant me now for what I pray !
Make us young and handsome quite,
Take to Eggville us this night;
Put us in a castle fine,
Give us servants, horses, kine;
Give us gold, and jewels rare,
Acres fat, and gardens fair;
Fill the larders, cellars too,
Like a noble's house to view;
Give us beauty, wisdom, fame,
Let distinguished be our name
Dearest Ring, oh grant, I pray,
All I ask of you this day "
While Gockel was turning the Ring round on his finger
he repeated the above wish several times, and then fell
asleep again. Thereupon he dreamed that a grave man,
dressed in foreign and rich costume, came to him with a
large book, which he opened before the wondering Gockel.
In this book were pictures of the most beautiful palaces,
gardens, furniture, houses, and carriages, from which Gockel
had to make a selection. This Gockel carefully did, and
NE W FAIR Y TALES FROM BRENTANO.
he dreamed this so vividly as though he were awake.
But when he had finished looking over the book the man
closed it so sharply, that Gockel suddenly awoke.
It was still dark, but he was so excited by his dream
that he thought he would wake up Hinkel and tell it to
her; at the same time, he felt so strange a sense of subtle
delight stealing over him, that he could hardly refrain from
shouting aloud. Gradually, as he grew more wide awake,
he noticed the most beautiful perfumes around him, and
could not understand how such exquisite flowers could
have sprung up overnight in his old fowl-house. And,
turning round, he perceived, too, that it was no straw
crackling under him, but that he was lying on silken
cushions; and then he cried out:
Mercy on us what's this ?"
At the same time Dame Hinkel cried out the same
thing, and then both called out:
Who's there ?"
And then they answered each other:
It's I, Hinkel It's myself, Gockel !"
But neither would believe that they really were them-
selves. Both had dreamed the same dream, and they
believed that they were still dreaming. At the same time,
their voices were so changed that they could not collect
themselves for very amazement.
Gockel," whispered Dame Hinkel, "what on earth
has happened to us? I feel as though I were twenty
years of age."
"I really couldn't tell you," replied Gockel, "whether
I am more than five-and-twenty. I don't feel older, at any
But how, in the name of all that's wonderful, do we
come to lie on a silken bed ?" asked Hinkel again; "even
in E,: -ill~ our bed was not so comfortable. And what a
delicious fragrance there is round us! And oh! my good-
ness! here's my wedding ring, which used to be so loose
that I often lost it at night in the straw, fixed so firmly on
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GACKEL-EIA. 50
my finger that I can hardly turn it round. Why, I've
grown quite fat!"
These last words reminded Gockel of the Ring of
King Solomon, and he reflected that all this might have
happened in consequence of last night's wish. Just then
they heard the neighing of horses in a stable close by;
then they heard a door banging, and then a glint of light
flew across the ceiling of the room, as though some one
crossed the courtyard with a lantern.
Then Gockel and Hinkel could not rest any longer,
and jumped out of bed; but they instantly fell rather
grievously on their noses. And now they were aware that
they were no longer sleeping on the ground,.but on high
and well-stuffed beds; and the gleam of the lantern showed
them, in place of the rough and bare walls of their poultry-
shed, costly hangings, silk curtains, splendid decorations,
and furniture of gold and silver.
They scrambled up from the polished floor, fell into
each other's arms, and cried for very joy, like children.
They loved each other as tenderly as if they had seen each
other for the first time. And now they observed the light
again, and saw that it fell through a tall window. Hand in
hand they rushed up to the window, and saw that it came
from the lantern of a coachman in a grand livery, who was
standing in a large courtyard, screening oats and whistling.
By the light of this lantern, which fell right on their win-
dow, Gockel looked at Hinkel, and Hinkel looked at
Gockel; and they laughed and cried, and fell on each
other's neck and called out together :
Oh, my dear Gockel! "Oh, my dear Hinkel! how
young and beautiful you have grown, to be sure "
Then Gockel said:
Alectryo has spoken the truth; and King Solomon's
Ring has bravely stood the test ; for all the wishes I
uttered while I turned the Ring last night have been ful-
filled." And then he told his wife all about the Ring, and
showed it to her; and she was inexpressibly delighted.
6o NE W FAIR Y TALES FROM BRENTANO.
Then they ran to another window, and looked out on
a beautiful garden. Lovely perfumes arose from the beds,
magnificent fountains plashed softly in the moonlight, and
a nightingale was singing in every bush. Then they ran
to a third window, and Dame Hinkel exclaimed:
"Oh dear! oh dear! Gockel, just see! We are in
Eggville, and just opposite to us, on the hill, is the King's
Palace! Oh, and over there, look, are all the delightful
butcher and baker shops in a row Oh, isn't it just sweet!
All the town is still quite silent! Hark! the watchman
is calling the hour at a distance. It is three o'clock!
Oh, how astonished he will be when he comes across the
market-place and suddenly sees our palace before him!
Oh, and how the King will open his eyes, and the Queen
too ; and all the gentlemen and ladies of the Court, who
smiled and sneered and sniggered when we went away
into exile and poverty! How they will be humiliated at
the sight of our renewed glory! Oh, Gockel! my dear
Gockel! what a dear, darling, delightful old man you are-
you and your dear, delightful King Solomon "
And with that they again fell into each other's arms.
Then the day broke, and they were amazed to see
the splendour of their room and the lovely blue satin gowns
and golden nightcaps they had on. Not till this moment,
in all the tumult of joy, did they as much as think of their
dearest Gackeleia; but now they hastened to her little bed
and eagerly opened the bed-curtains, which were of red
velvet, richly embroidered with gold. Then they saw
Gackeleia lying inside, as beautiful as a little angel, but
oh, far more beautiful than she had ever been before, and
Gockel and Hinkel woke her with tears and kisses.
Wake up, Gackeleia, dearest! wake up You don't
know what lovely things are all around us. Open your
eyes, Gackeleia, and look on us."
So Gackeleia opened her blue eyes, and thought she
was only dreaming; and because she did not recognize
her father and mother in their new youth and beauty, she
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GACKELEIA. 6i
began to cry and ask for her dear parents. Not any of
the beautiful new things comforted her in the least, and
she only repeated :
Oh dear! what is the use of this splendour to me ?
I want to go back to my dear mother Hinkel, and to my
dear, good father Gockel !"
And all her parents could do or say would not per-
suade Gackeleia that they really were her parents. At
last Gockel said to her :
"Then who are you ?"
"I am Gackeleia," answered the child.
You say you are Gackeleia," retorted Gockel; "but
Gackeleia had on a common, coarse, grey dress yesterday.
How is it that Gackeleia is wearing such a beautiful
embroidered nightgown of silk?"
"Oh, I don't know anything about that," said Gackeleia,
" but I am quite certain I am Gackeleia. I'm quite sure I
am, because my eyes still smart so, all because I cried so
much yesterday, because I was the cause of a terrible
misfortune, because I took the cat to Gallina's nest, because
it was my fault that she died and all the little chickens
were eaten up, and because I caused the death of poor
Alectryo! Oh, I am quite sure I am Gackeleia-I am
Here she cried a good deal, and then continued:
"I am quite sure you are not Gockel, because my
father Gockel's hair is quite white, and his beard is white,
and his face is pale, and he has a sharp, pointed nose ; but
you have dark, curly hair and red cheeks. You never are
my father Gockel! And you are not my mother Hinkel
either! Why you are quite slim and slender, and my
mother is comfortable, and squat, and dumpy! I want to
go back to our old ruined castle. I'm positive you have
And here Gackeleia sobbed bitterly.
Then Gockel did not know what to do to pacify
Gackeleia, so he said to the child :
NE W FAIRY TALES FROM BRENTANO
Just look at me very hard indeed, and see if I be not
your father Gockel."
So Gackeleia stared at him very hard indeed, while he
softly turned the Ring of Solomon, and said in a low voice:
"Solomon, thou sapient King,
Change me by thy potent Ring
To the Gockel old of yore;
Make me what I was before !"
And even as he turned the Ring he slowly became older
and older, and greyer and greyer, and the child kept on
Oh dear! Oh, now you are almost like my father,
but not quite "
When Gockel had finished turning the Ring, the child
jumped out of bed, flew on his neck, and screamed with
Now it is you! it's you! It's your own dear self
again It is my dear, darling old father! But that never
is my dear old mother!"
Then Gockel began turning his Ring again, on Hinkel's
account; and even as he turned she began to grow older
and greyer. But Dame Hinkel did not enjoy it at all, and
protested very energetically :
Do stop, Gockel! No, that is really too bad to make
me look like that!- No, this is perfectly shameful! I vow
I never looked so old in all my life; you are making me
much older than I was."
And then she cried and scolded, and was going to
snatch at Gockel's hand to turn the Ring back again; bui
Gackeleia now flew rapturously into her arms, and kissed
her a thousand times, and exclaimed again and again :
"Oh, mother! dear mother! Now you are yourself
again! Now I'm quite sure that you are my mother! "
So Dame Hinkel said :
"Well, so be it, my dear," and kissed her child with
all her heart. But Gockel laughed, and said :
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GACIKELEIA. 63
"Aha! In sooth, Dame Hinkel, is that so ? I never
would have believed that you were so vain! Well, now I
have a remedy in hand to punish you. Look, if you are
not cheerful and active, or if you grumble or are too
.curious, I need only turn my Ring, and make you a
hundred years old."
Then Hinkel said softly:
Do as you like, my dear! I did not really want to
say what I did, but it took me so by surprise, you see."
But Gockel embraced her, and turned his Ring back
again; and both became young and beautiful once
In this way Gackeleia learned the secret of the Ring;
and Gockel admonished them both seriously never to
breathe a word about the Ring, or it would be stolen, and
then they would lose all their present prosperity, and have
to live in exile again in their old ruined castle.
"But now," continued Gockel, "let us thank God
heartily for our new happiness; for to Him alone honour
is due." So they knelt down in the middle of the room
and thanked God with all their hearts.
The watchman had now come to the market-place; and
scarcely had he seen Gockel's splendid palace, which seemed
to have grown out of the ground like a mushroom, than
he commenced a terrible uproar, crying out at the top of his
"Listen, folks, to what I say
(The clock has just struck four, by the way),
But that is nothing to what I spy,
A palace fallen down from the sky I
Before me, broad and long it lies
I scarcely can believe my eyes;
I look at it again and again,
And doubt that addled is my brain.
Awake, ye people, come and gaze
At this biggest marvel of all your days.
Oh Lord I think I'm in a craze !
Take care of fire and candles too,
That no misfortune may accrue.
And so good-night."
64 NE W FAIR Y TALES FROM BRENTANO.
Then all the citizens of Eggville living round the large
square awoke; and the butchers and bakers rubbed their
eyes very hard, and opened their mouths as wide as barn
doors. A greengrocer opened his mouth so wide that it
was an impossibility to shut it again without the help of two
men and a little boy. And then they began shouting and
vociferating, and bawling and roaring, from very amazement;
while Gockel, Hinkel, and Gackeleia stood at the window
and peeped from behind the curtains. At last a fat Butcher
cried: It's a castle That's flat! No one in their senses
can say it's not a castle! But what I want to know is
whether people live in it who eat joints."
"And bread and rolls, and cakes and biscuits," eagerly
interrupted a short and very dusty Baker.
Then, all at once, the castle gates opened wide, and
out came a tall Hall Porter, with a huge ruff as big as a
wheel, and a broad silver ribbon across his breast. He
carried a large wand, on the top of which was a silver
knob, as large as a pumpkin, and on this knob was a
large silver chanticleer, flapping his wings. At sight of
him the people started, especially when he approached
them gravely and sedately, because they took him for a
ghost. Gockel and Hinkel, too, were astonished when they
saw him, and opened the window a little to hear what he
would say. He said this:
My dear Folk of Eggville! It is not at all good
manners to make this uproar at break of day, under the
very windows and nose, as it were, of his Excellency the
Marquis of Dorking, and of Hinkel his wife, Countess of
Langshan. His Excellency will, I fear, be greatly disgusted
at being disturbed so early, and I trust I shall not have to
repeat my admonition! "
I beg your pardon," said the fat Butcher, "is it per-
mitted to ask whether this castle, which has sprouted like a
mushroom from the earth, overnight, is inhabited by the
late High Commissioner for Inland and Foreign Poultry
and Pheasants ?"
THE STORY OF GOCIKEL, HINKEL, AND GACKELEIA. 65
Not only is it inhabited by his Excellency the Marquis
of Dorking, and by Hinkel his wife Countess of Langshan,
with their very charming daughter, the Honourable Gacke-
leia," answered the Hall Porter, "but also by two Valets de
Chambre, two Women in Waiting, four Servants in Livery,
four Upper Housemaids (one very pretty), three Footmen
in Powder, two Gamekeepers, two Running Footmen, two
Heyducs, two Chamberlains, two Blackamoors, two Court
Giants, two Court Dwarfs, two Hall Porters (of whom I
flatter myself to represent one-not badly either!), two
Coachmen (one with a pigtail), six Grooms, two Chefs de
Cuisine, six Scullions, two Head Gardeners, six Gardener
Boys, one Major Domo, Mrs. Major Domo, one Poultryman,
one Henwife, one Pheasant Steward, besides other servants.
All these manage to eat, with the greatest ease in the world,
every day, 100 Sirloins, 1oo Fillets of Veal, 200 Legs of
Mutton, 50 Loins of Lamb, 20 Legs of Pork, and 30 pounds
"Oh, good Lord !" cried the fat Butcher, and in his
ecstasy he nearly knelt before the Hall Porter. I beg
to offer my humble services as Court Butcher to your noble
Thereupon the Baker pulled the Hall Porter's sleeve
excitedly, and whispered:
His Excellency the Marquis of Dorking, and all his
noble household, surely cannot demolish this huge quantity
of meat without any bread. Why, they would die of indi-
"Certainly not," answered the Hall Porter. "We
shall require, furthermore, every day, ioo Vienna Loaves,
50 Quartern Loaves, 50 Brown Loaves, Ioo Rusks, 250
Muffins, and 75 Crumpets!"
Oh, then, I beg to offer my humble services as Court
Baker!" cried the Baker, in a sort of ecstasy.
"It will depend," said the Hall Porter, gravely, "on
whoever shall send us the best meat and the best bread."
At these words all the people rushed as fast as they
66 NE W FAIRY TALES FROM BRENTANO.
could to 'their shops, and chopped, and hacked, and
pounded, and cut, and kneaded for very life. Then they
dressed their shop windows so grandly that Christmas time
was nothing to it.
But the Grocers, and Greengrocers, and Milkmen, and
Drapers, and Chemists, and Ironmongers, and Florists, and
all the other tradespeople now came rushing up in their
turn, and, on hearing what had happened, were delighted
at this splendid chance of doing business.
But Gockel, Hinkel, and Gackeleia ran all about their
new palace, and looked at everything. All the servants
were busy, and the palace was full of life; clothes were
being brushed, boots and shoes were blackened, horses
were taken to drink, the fowls were fed-in fact, it was
just like at the Court of Eggville.
In order to show their joy, the citizens marched up,
each guild with its flying banners and music, and when they
were in front of the palace they fired off their rusty old
guns, and cried:
Hurrah! hurrah! Long live the Marquis of Dorking!
Long live the Countess of Langshan! and the Honourable
Gackeleia! Three cheers, and one over, for he is a jolly
good fellow-meaning his Excellency, of course!"
Meanwhile, Gockel and Hinkel and Gackeleia stood on
the balcony of their window, and threw halfpence down
among the people in profusion, Gackeleia preferring to throw
new farthings, in case she should hurt their heads. And the
Cellar Master and two Butlers rolled up an enormous cask
of Aerated Wine and Water from the cellars, and poured
it out to whoever was thirsty.
Now the King of Eggville did not live at that time in
the town, but a mile away, in his splendid country-seat
Kastellovo, which means Castle of Eggs. For the whole
of this wonderful palace was built of blown eggshells, and
in the walls mosaic stars were let in, of beautifully-coloured
Easter eggs! This palace was the favourite resort of the
King; for the building was of his own royal invention, and
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HIINKEL, AND GACKELEIA. 67
all the eggs, moreover, had been used in his household.
The roof of Kastellovo was built in the image of a brooding
hen; and the outside was covered with tiny feathers and
down, while inside, the eggshells were painted yellow, like
the yolk of eggs. It was truly beautiful. It was, by the
by, the cost of building this palace which was the cause of
Gockel's departure from Court, as he had, in his capacity
of Lord High Commissioner of Foreign and Inland Game
and Poultry, protested energetically against the extrava-
gance and waste of eggs and poultry, and this had naturally
offended the King.
Every day it was the custom of the High Commissioner
of the Royal Kitchens to drive over to Eggville with his
carriage, to buy all the necessary victuals. Now imagine
his consternation when he found all the town assembled, in
general festivity and jollification, before a palace he had
never seen before in his life, and heard Gockel's name on
every lip. But his consternation soon changed to anger
and indignation when all the Butchers, Bakers, Poulterers,
Cheesemongers, Grocers, and Greengrocers informed him
that they could not supply him with any goods:
"For we have sold everything to his Excellency
Gockel, Marquis of Dorking," was the answer which
greeted him on all sides. At last he tried to get some
provisions by force, but the populace so vigorously opposed
him that a tumult arose. Gockel, who had been informed
of the reason, instantly sent down word to the Royal
Commissioner to say that he was not to trouble himself
about provisions for that day, as it was his intention to
invite His Majesty, the Royal Family, and all the Royal
Household to a plate of soup and a cutlet. He also
begged of him to be so good as to send his Provision Cart
up to the Castle, when he would take the liberty of sending
up a trifling snack to His Majesty.
Then Gockel caused the waggon to be filled up with
plovers' eggs, and also sent his two Court Blackamoors,
who were to instruct the King how to eat them in proper
68 NE W FAIR Y TALES FROM BRENTANO.
style, for Egg-Gorgius had never eaten plovers' eggs in his
His Majesty heard the story of Gockel and his new
palace with much amazement, and instantly gave orders
that a hundred plovers' eggs should be boiled hard for him.
When the two dusky Court Blackamoors entered, dressed
in gold-embroidered coats, and carrying silver salt-dishes,
in which the eggs stood embedded upright, their black
complexions contrasted so finely with the white palace of
eggshells that the King was mightily pleased. He sent
for Her Majesty Queen Egglaya and for the Crown Prince
Crownovus to breakfast with him, and then he told them
the wonderful tale.
"Oh," said Crownovus, "then I suppose little Gacke-
leia, with whom I used to play formerly, is there too ?"
Certainly," said the King, "and after breakfast we
will immediately drive over and see what it is all about.
But look at these curious eggs which Gockel has sent us,
and which are said to come from Russia. They are green,
with black spots, and because the bird that lays them cries
out Ki-bitz, kibitz!' they are transported hither in kibitkas,
which are nothing but fowlhouses on wheels."
I humbly beg your Majesty's pardon," interrupted one
of the Court Blackamoors, but I rather think it is like this,
you see! The bird that lays them is called a plover; he
is about as big as a pigeon, and of the colour of a snipe.
This bird always cries out, 'Qui vit-Qui vit!' like a
French sentry, and if you answer 'a friend,' it invariably
allows you to come up and take away its eggs; whereupon
it instantly lays some more."
Here the Blackamoor respectfully bowed, quite pleased
with his remarkable elucidation of Natural History; but
the King was not a little annoyed that a Blackamoor should
excel him in Egg-lore, so he sharply said to him:
Hold your tongue, Sir; you know nothing whatever
about it! Go home and teach your Grandmother to suck
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GACKELEIA. 69
The unfortunate Blackamoor turned a sort of livid
white about the gills beneath his black skin, and it was not
until he had humbly explained at some length that he
possessed no Grandmother, as far as he was aware of,
that King Egg-Gorgius' dignity was appeased.
The second Blackamoor now said:
Our master, his Excellency Gockel, Marquis of
Dorking, has commanded us to show your Majesty how
these eggs are partaken of, according to the latest fashion."
Said the King: I am very curious to see it done."
Then each of the Blackamoors took a plover's egg in
his left flat hand, and then they confronted each other, and
raised their right hand on high. They now begged the
King to count one, two, three, which he did; and when
he had said three, one Blackamoor smote the other
Blackamoor's egg so hard with his right hand that the
yellow yolk instantly flew out, round and compact, which
was a very pretty and curious sight.
The King was so pleased with this game that they
were obliged to go. through the same performance with all
the hundred plover eggs, and when they went home he
decorated them with the Order of the Coloured Easter Egg,
and hung it round their necks with his own royal hand.
And then the King and Queen, with the Crown
Prince, instantly drove over to Eggville, followed by his
whole Court, to call on Gockel, who came forward with
Hinkel and Gackeleia to the palace gates, to meet the
The royal party could not sufficiently admire the riches
they saw scattered around, nor the youth and beauty of
Gockel and his family. The plate of soup and the cutlets
developed into a sumptuous meal, and the palace was full
of rejoicing. Prince Crownovus and Gackeleia sat at a
little table by themselves, and the two Court Dwarfs
waited upon them, while a band of music was stationed in
every corner of the room.
When dessert was put upon the table, King Egg-
70 NE W FAIR Y TALES FROM BRENTANO.
Gorgius called Gockel "Brother," and Queen Egglaya
called Hinkel "Sister"; but Prince Crownovus and.
Gackeleia said: "You are my Queen and my King."
Then King Egg-Gorgius drew Gockel aside into a window
and solemnly hung the Grand Egg of the Order of the
Easter Egg round his neck, instantly borrowing 10oo from
him afterwards, the whole affecting scene winding up with
a national festival.
Thus Gockel and his family lived nearly a year, in
supreme bliss and happiness in Eggville, and the King was
so pleased with Gockel and his first-rate cook, and his
bottomless purse, while the people loved him on account
of his great generosity, that it was quite difficult to distin-
guish who was the real king in Eggville, Gockel or Egg-
Gorgius. And it was an arranged thing between them
that Gackeleia should become the wife of the Crown Prince
Crownovus, and should reign beside him one day, as Queen
on the throne of Eggville.
But man proposes and Heaven disposes, and so it
happened that several things befell these good people of
which they had never dreamed.
Now little Gackeleia had everything she could wish for,
or think of, excepting a doll; for her father Gockel held
strictly to the interdict he had passed upon her, on the
death of Alectryo, that, as a punishment, she should never
play with a doll. So when at Christmas, or New Year's
time, all the little girls of Eggville proudly walked about
with new dolls, Gackeleia was very sad, and often cried
secretly, so much would she have loved to have a doll.
But when Gockel saw that his little daughter, whom he
loved so tenderly, was sad and unhappy, he did all in his
power to comfort her. He bought her the loveliest new
picture books, he told her the most wonderful stories, nay,
he even sometimes gave her the Ring of Solomon to hold
and gaze upon; for the lustrous emerald stone, engraved
with mystic signs, had the rare gift of gladdening and con-
soling all who gazed upon it.
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, IHNKEL, AND GACKELEIA. 71
One day Gackeleia happened to be strolling in her
garden-and a very pretty garden it was too, as I shall tell
you. The flower beds were filled with lovely flowers,
and neatly edged with box and sage. The paths were
quite bright with golden gravel. In the middle was a
fountain, in which goldfish were swimming about; and there
was a golden aviary full of bright birds, that were singing
at the top of their voices. Behind the fountain was a little
arbour covered with roses and honeysuckle, and a little
grass bank served as a seat for Gackeleia, while a golden
wire fence surrounded this sweet little garden.
"Alas," said Gackeleia to herself, "how happy I should
be if I could take a pretty dolly for a walk in my pretty
little garden! I don't care a bit about it, all by myself.
What is the use of my knotting up my pocket-handkerchief
into all sorts of figures, it will never be a proper doll, with
limbs and a nice red face, just like a human being! But
my father himself has forbidden me to have such a doll-oh
While Gackeleia was sitting on her grassy bank, plunged
in deep doll's cares, she suddenly heard a pleasant and
buzzing, but very soft, music quite close to her, behind her
garden, which joined on to the high road. So she eagerly
looked through the fence, and then she saw something
Close to the fence a man was sitting, wrapped in a large
circular cloak; his head was not visible, and he squatted on
the ground, while the music seemed to come forth from the
mantle. Gackeleia lay down flat on the ground to see
where on earth the sweet soft music could come from; but
fancy her amazement when she saw a sweet little pair of
doll's legs, with blue satin slippers embroidered with silver
on the tiny feet, keeping strict time to the music. She
hardly knew what to do to get a better view of the doll,
and often she was on the point of timidly stretching out her
hand through the fence to lift the hem of the black cloak;
but she was afraid to do so, because the figure before her
72 NE W FAIR Y TALES FROM BRENTANO.
had no head. At last she cut off a long willow wand,
pushed it gently through the wire fence, and then lifted the
cloak a little way; and lo, a most beautiful doll, in the
sweetest clothes, dressed as a little flower girl, buzzed and
hummed about, and then danced out from the cloak and
ran straight up to the golden fence where Gackeleia was.
She ran several times against the wire, and would certainly
have come in, if a skinny hand had not issued out from
the cloak, and pulled her back again ; and Gackeleia
heard how the little doll was being scolded by a rough
voice for having dared to run away from out the cloak.
Then Gackeleia was unable to contain herself any longer,
and shouted out:
"Oh, Mr. Black-cloak! don't scold the dear, sweet little
doll! Pray don't! And oh, do let her come into mygarden
for a short while; please, please do! "
Then the cloak suddenly opened, and she saw an old
man with a grey beard, who got up from the ground where
he had been sitting, and bowed to Gackeleia, saying:
I beg your pardon, young lady, that I took the liberty
of letting my little doll practise her dancing steps a bit
under my cloak, myself playing the Jew's-harp at the same
t'me; but I did not know that any one was looking at me.
I only wanted to try her, to see whether she had sustained
any damage on her travels, because I am going to let her
dance in Eggville, in the Town Hall, for money. Look at
her, how pretty she is she is now dressed like a little flower
girl, you see. She has a rake in one hand and a watering-
pot in the other; but I have still a great variety of cos-
tumes for her. Look, my sweet child! Here is a dress
for a little shepherdess; a regular Bo-peep dress, with a
crook and a hat, and a lamb, with his tail behind him; and
here is a hunting costume, with a whip and a pair of little
top-boots, and a pack of beagles to follow. But I have
many more dresses, and I can dress her as I please, another
costume for every hour of the day."
With these words the old man drew forth a quantity of
THE STORY OF GOCZEL, HINKEL, AND GACKELEIA. 73
the most lovely dolls' dresses from all his pockets, and handed
them over the fence for Gackeleia to look at, who was quite
wild at the sight of them. The little doll looked out of the
old man's sleeve, and kept on wagging her head at Gackeleia.
Oh," said Gackeleia, "you dear old man! please lend
me your doll for a minute, that I may have a good look at
her. I never saw anything so exquisite in all my life!"
But the old man answered:
That I cannot do, my sweet child. Please give me
back the dresses and costumes I showed you. I must
make haste and get into my lodgings before night, for I
am late as it is; but, if you will do me a great favour, you
shall have this pretty doll and all her lovely dresses as a
"Alas!" said Gackeleia, sadly, "I am forbidden to
have a doll; and oh, I should so love to have this one !"
Then the old man said to her:
This one you may have, my dear, because it is no doll,
but only an Art-machine, with clock-work inside; and when
I wind it up it can run about alone, like a human being, for
half-an-hour. See here!"
And with that he drew the doll from out his sleeve,
and pulled out a large watch-key, which he placed in a hole
in her breast. He then turned the key-screech, screech,
screech! put the figure on the ground, when the doll ran
up and down in front of the garden fence, nodding her
head at Gackeleia.
Oh, she is beckoning to me!" screamed Gackeleia,
clapping her little fat hands. She wants to come to me in
the garden. Oh, please tell me, you dear old man, what
favour I shall do you in order to have this doll for my own!"
It's a mere trifle," said the old man. Look here,
my sweet child, I am a very depressed and lonely old man
indeed. I haven't either father or mother, nor son, nor
daughter, nor brother, nor sister, nor house, nor garden, nor
chick, nor child I have nothing in the wide world except
this doll; but I am so miserable that even this cannot
74 NE W FAIR Y TALES FROM BRENTAINO.
comfort me. But yoz can comfort me, so that I shall be-
come as frisky as a kitten, and as lively as a cricket. Oh
dear! oh dear!"
And here the old man began crying and blubbering so
pitifully that Gackeleia said to him:
Oh, please don't cry like that, poor old man! I will
do all I can to comfort you, if you will give me the doll
afterwards. Only tell me what to do."
So the old man said:
SYour father has a Ring so bright,
With emerald l., --, verdant light;
Oh, what a wondrous, splendid blaze I
If only I therein might gaze
A moment's time, then I should be
As happy as a king-ah me !
Then I should let this dolly sweet
Come in your garden. What a treat 1
Then, with its toys and dresses fine,
It now and ever shall be thine."
I know the Ring very well," said Gackeleia; "and it
has often made me glad, too, whenever I was allowed to
look at it. If you will wait here till after dinner I will bring
the Ring out to you to look at, when father is asleep. But
be sure you are here when I come back with the Ring."
I certainly will be here," replied the old man, and
I will leave the dresses of my doll with you now. You can
fold and smooth them, because I have crushed them
rather, in my pockets."
Then he gave her the clothes, made the doll dance
again before her, and then hastily left Gackeleia, who kept
calling after him :
Be sure and come be sure and come The Ring will
be sure to comfort you "
I shall come, depend upon it!" cried the old man, and
disappeared behind the hedges.
Then Gackeleia sat down in her arbour and sorted and
tidied all the dresses of the doll, and thought how pretty it
THE STORY OF GOCICEL, HINIEL, AND GACKELEIA. 75
would be if the little doll ran about with her between the
beds. She could hardly await the afternoon, so excited and
happy was she.
Then, when her father Gockel was asleep in his arm-
chair, after dinner, Gackeleia, who was sitting at his feet,
held his hand in her own and looked intently into the green
stone of the Ring. And as she was saying softly to herself,
" Oh, how I wish my father would not wake up, and that
the Ring would gently drop from his finger into my hand!"
the Ring instantly fulfilled her wish, and came off from
Gockel's finger. Gockel was fast asleep and snoring, so
Gackeleia, with the Ring in her hand, flew like a bird to her
little garden, where the old man's lean face was already
peering through the fence, eager for the sight of the Ring.
Gackeleia called out to him :
Give me the doll! Give me the doll! Here is the
Ring! But make haste and look into it, for I must run
back into the palace before my father wakes up."
So the old man gave her the doll, and showed her how
to wind up the clock-work. She gave him the Ring to look
at, and danced up and down with her doll, who followed
her everywhere. Gackeleia clapped her little hands with
delight. But the old man now also clapped his hands;
and when Gackeleia heard this she asked him whether the
sight of the Ring had comforted him already.
Yes, it has, my dear," he said, cheerfully, giving her
back the Ring; and then, with an ugly smile, he wished her
much joy of her doll, and went his way.
Then Gackeleia hastened back with the Ring to Gockel,
who was still asleep, and gently slipped it on his finger
again. But her doll, with all its clothes, she had hidden in
Gockel was scarcely awake when he received an invi-
tation from the King, for himself and his family, to come
and see him in his Castle of Eggs. Gackeleia quickly ran
into the garden and put up her doll, and doll's dresses,
because she thought it would amuse Prince Crownovus,
NE W FAIR Y TALES FROM BRENTANO.
when they played together. Then she and her parents got
into a grand carriage, drawn by six horses, and they drove
to Kastellovo, where all the people were assembled in a
large meadow, and where dancing and egg-games were
going on. For it was Easter Time, and the Grand Festival
of the Easter Egg.
People ran and jumped after eggs; they played at Aunt
Sally, with eggs instead of cocoanuts; they threw eggs at
other eggs, set up as a mark; they cracked their eggs
against other people's eggs, and the one whose egg was
All the children of Eggville were looking for the Easter
Eggs which the Royal Grand Easter Hare had cunningly
laid in secret corners of the hedgerows, and in the long
grass tufts of the meadow; in fact, there was a regular egg-
jollification going on all round. And now all the people
formed an immense ring, and the Court Musicians, in
company with the Town Pipers, played and piped a lovely
dance tune. For the Royal Family was going to dance
the celebrated Egg Dance with the noble family of Dork-
ing and Langshan. And this is how they did it:
A splendid Persian carpet was laid on the grass, and on
this carpet were placed a hundred gilt peacocks' eggs, in
ten rows. Then Queen Egglaya went up to Gockel and
blindfolded him with a silk handkerchief, and he did the
same to her; in the same way King Egg-Gorgius and
Dame Hinkel blindfolded each other, and Prince Crownovus
Gackeleia. Thereupon the Court Marshals led them on
to the egg-carpet, and then they danced the most exquisite
steps and the most daring capers without as much as
touching an egg with their feet. The lookers-on were
quite amazed at the remarkable agility of the illustrious
Royalty and Nobility. But not far ff, seated in a little
thicket, were two old men, who did not seem to take the
slightest interest in the royal dance, but kept peering to-
wards the town, to see if their companion, the third old
man, would not be here soon. And lo! ere they could
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GACKELEIA. 77
see him approaching from afar, he was standing beside
"Have you got it? have you got it?" they cried
out, craning their necks and stretching out their fingers,
sharp as claws, towards his hand, which he held tightly
closed; and he replied:
"Yes, I have actually obtained the wonderful Ring, by
means of Gackeleia's fondness and weakness for dolls. I
have given her another ring, with a false, green glass jewel,
instead of the real one, and Gockel is wearing it on his
finger now. We can now revenge ourselves on him for
having cheated us so when we wanted to buy Alectryo, and
for having made us fall into the pit, where we would have
been starved to death, if those men had not pulled us out."
Thus spake the three old men, who were no others,
indeed, than the three Natural Philosophical Seal Engravers,
who had wanted to cheat Gockel, and whom he had hood-
winked instead. They had, however, managed, by dint of
cunning, to get hold of the Ring, after all, and were deter-
mined to test its magic powers at once. So they all three
touched it at the same time, eagerly saying:
"Solomon, thou sapient King,
By the power of this Ring
Make thou Gockel old again,
Tattered, battered, grimy, plain;
Make Dame Hinkel old and bent,
Haggard, scraggy, ugly, spent;
Render Gackeleia soiled,
Splashed, unwashed, a dirty child;
Take away their goods and gain,
Castle, horses, fields, and grain;
On a sudden send them back
To their fowl-house, old and black.
But us Seal Engravers three
Build a palace, grand to see;
Make us Consuls, Agents high,
Knights and Baronets, by and by;
Give us gold, and splendour, fame,
In finance be high our name;
78 N.E W FAIR Y TALES FROM BRENIANO.
Make us fair as David's son,
Comely, charming Absalom;
Make us happy as a king;
Give us all we want, oh Ring.
Pretty Ring, oh grant, we pray,
All we ask of you this day."
While they were thus turning the Ring round, with
these words, the people looking on at the dance began to
grumble, and laugh, and then to hoot loudly:
Look at the old 1b:.;-.-r, and his dirty old wife! Look
at their pert brat! Did you ever see such impudence?
Smash, crash! just listen how they are breaking all the
And then the tumult became so loud and angry that
the King and Queen and the Crown Prince hastily tore
the bandages away from their eyes; and then they were
not a little astonished to see Gockel, Marquis of Dor-
king, Dame Hinkel, his wife, and the Honourable
Gackeleia, who, just before, had been young, and beau-
tiful, and richly clad, changed into an aged, dirty, ragged
family of beggars, who were trampling on the eggs lying
on the beautiful carpet.
Hereupon the Royal Family gave such an indignant
shout, that poor Gockel and his family tore away their
bandages too, and so altered were they that they hardly
knew themselves again, and cried and lamented bitterly
that they had been so cruelly changed. Gockel touched
the false ring of Solomon, and turned it again and again, but
the false and exchanged ring was all powerless to help
him. Then he looked at it closely, and instantly recog-
nized that it had been exchanged. He then cried out
loudly: "Woe is me! I am undone! I have been cheated
of my Ring! "
He was going to fall at the feet of the King to tell him
of his misfortune, but that monarch haughtily repulsed him,
and the Queen turned her back on Dame Hinkel, and
muttered something about impudent tramps and their
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GACKELE'IA. 79
baggage. Only Prince Crownovus remained kind-hearted
to poor little Gackeleia when, weeping, she offered to say
good-bye to him; for he gave her half-a-crown, which he
happened to have in his hand, and his pocket-handkerchief,
telling her to wash her dirty face with it, and earnestly
begging her to run away as fast as she could, because he
saw the Town Beadle coming. He also hurriedly promised
to save up all his pocket-money every week, and if she
would go on Saturday evenings to the pump in the castle
garden she would find among the forget-me-nots, near the
parsley bed, an egg with Gackeleia written on it, and in
this egg she would always find his week's allowance.
Gackeleia wept bitterly at this unexpected kindness, and
was just going to kiss him when the Beadle tore her away
from the Prince, and ruthlessly drove the child with its
father and mother over the frontier.
The King and his family thoughtfully returned to their
castle to ponder over this strange event; and the people
rushed back to Eggville to plunder Gockel's palace. But
in the meantime night had fallen, and when they arrived
on the market-place the watchman met them, crying lustily:
"Oh listen, folks, to what I say
(The clock has struck ten by the way),
But that is nothing to what befell:
The palace is gone, which is all very well,
But here it stood, broad and long to see;
I know not if wool-gathering I be !
The market is empty, as 'twas before;
I stand like an idiot at a new door !
Behold, ye folks, this marvel vast,
Which silent came, and as quickly passed.
Take care of fire, and candles too,
That no misfortune may accrue;
And so good-night "
And truly Gockel's splendid palace, with gardens, and all
contained therein, had vanished as if it had never been.
The old fountain plashed in the middle of the square as if
80 NE W FAIR Y TALES FROM BRENTANO.
nothing had happened, and the honest citizens, after having
stared very hard for some time at nothing at all, went home
to consider what they should do with all their joints and
loaves now Gockel and his large household were not there
to buy them any longer.
So poor Gockel, and poor Hinkel, and poor Gackeleia
went through the dense forest to their old castle as they had
done before, but they were far more sad than at that time,
and none spoke a word. Dame Hinkel even covered her
head with her apron because she was so ashamed of being
old and ugly.
When they had arrived at the top of a hill from whence
they could once more see Eggville, Gockel turned round
Oh, Eggville! unhappy town, where my wonderful
Ring of King Solomon was stolen from me Oh, un-
grateful and ungenerous King Egg-Gorgius How
disgracefully you repulsed me in my misery, and never as
much as thought of repaying the money you borrowed from
me in happier times "
Then Dame Hinkel cried:
Oh, perfidious Queen Egglaya! What quantities of
nice and tasty dishes have I not made for thee! How
many new recipes for eggs have I not taught thee How
many hundreds of Easter Eggs have I not coloured for
thee, because you had run short of colouring material at
home Have I not always sent thee the patterns of my
new dresses and caps and bonnets as soon as they had
come from the dressmaker ? And now that we have lost
the Ring and have become poor, you send us tattered and
starving out of your dominions."
Then Gackeleia lifted up her little voice and spoke:
Oh, thou little Prince Crownovus, you are the best of
them all. You gave me your half-crown, and your pocket-
handkerchief that I might wipe my face, and every week
you are going to hide your pocket-money in an egg, near
the pump, for me. Oh, my dear Crownovus, you are still
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GACKELEIA. 81
the same kind boy you always were, and you did not
repulse your poor, dirty Gackeleia. Oh, I am so sorry that
in my fright I have forgotten to give you my lovely doll as
Scarcely had Gackeleia uttered the word doll when
Gockel quickly turned.round and said angrily :
"You wretched child Do you mean to say you have
got a doll ? What doll ? Where is this doll ? "
And here he was going to catch hold of little Gackeleia,
but she ran away from her provoked father to the extreme
edge of a rock which overhung a steep abyss. Dame
Hinkel screamed aloud:
Dear heart alive She will be killed if she falls over! "
and seized Gackeleia's arm. But Gackeleia, kneeling at the
extreme edge of the rock, spread out her arms beseechingly
towards her father and said:
Father Gockel, pardon me;
Mother Hinkel, set me free;
Or your little girl will leap
Down this yawning, dreadful steep."
Then Dame Hinkel earnestly begged of Gockel to
forgive his child, and Gockel said Gackeleia was to tell
him everything, adding that she need not be afraid of his
Tell us all about it, Gackeleia," said her mother.
" Where did you get a doll from ? "
But Gackeleia was in considerable terror, because her
father kept tearing small twigs from a birch-tree standing
near, while she related her story, and it looked as if he
were going to bind, if not a broom, at least a rod there-with.
But it was of no use, Gackeleia was obliged to confess, so
she said :
Lo this morning came to me
An old man, so sad to see;
And he made a doll, so fair,
Dance before me, then and there "
NEW V FAIRY TALES FRi O BRENTANO.
Did I not say so ? cried Gockel angrily, and pulled
off a strong twig from the birch-tree. "Did I not say so ?
It's perfectly abominable."
But Gackeleia quickly replied:
No, it's not a Doll I mean,
But a lovely Art-machine !
Gardener, huntress, shepherdess,
Each in her own proper dress,
Dancing on the forest green,
Nothing sweeter could be seen."
"Oh, abominable !" said Gockel; but Gackeleia con-
Oh, it was most sweetly pretty,
And I vowed it was a pity
Not to have the darling toy
Tri-i'.i_, dancing, running by.
See, she wanted to come in,
Not to let her seemed a sin;
I believed the old man's song,
That I was not doing wrong;
That it was no Doll, I ween,
But a lovely Art-machine."
Verily, nice excuses," said Gockel angrily, again tearing
off a branch from the birch-tree.
Gackeleia did not like this at all, but said :
Father Gockel, let it be,
Leave alone that poor birch-tree
Much I fear that what you do
Is a rod, in pickle new."
Then Gockel gravely answered:
Gackeleia, look! I ween,
This is but an Art-machine;
Think not on a rod, my child,
Think on all that's sweet and mild."
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GA CKELEIA. 83
But Gackeleia said :
"Art-machine of birchen bough,
Oh, that is your fun, I vow I"
But Gockel said quickly:
"Art-machine for Art-machine,
Birchen rod for doll, I mean !"
This sternly parental sentiment affected Gackeleia
greatly, and she began to cry most grievously and miserably:
"Father Gockel, pardon me;
Mother Hinkel, set me free;
Or your Gackeleia small
Down this precipice will fall 1"
Then her mother again interceded earnestly for her;
but Gockel persisted in his former dry remark, that he
was not going to kill her, and, furthermore, that she was
to relate truthfully what else the old man had said to her,
and what it was that she had given him in exchange for
the Art-machine. Here Gockel snorted viciously, and
Gackeleia went on, sighing and trembling:
"Ah, the old man was so sad,
Not a soul on earth he had.
He of parents both bereft,
Not a brother, sister, left;
Not a son, and not a daughter
(Here he shed much sore salt water)-
Not an aunt (oh, sad his woes !)-
Nothing but a long, long nose,
And a beard so white and long;
Such his dismal, tearful song."
"The precious old villain!" here exclaimed Dame
Hinkel, vigorously tearing off a thick branch of birch in her
turn. It is his fault that I have such an ugly long nose !"
NEW FAIRY TALES FROM BRENTANO.
And Gockel said:
Look you, Dame Hinkel, now you begin to find out
what we owe to him. You the long nose, and I the long
beard. Oh, most wretched Art-machine What ridiculous
figures we cut through thee But go on, Gackeleia; go
on, my child !"
Then Gackeleia, much afraid, went on:
"All he wanted was to spy,
For the twinkling of an eye,
In thy green and magic Ring,
Which would comfort everything."
"Oh, villainous deceiver !" cried Gockel. "Oh, thou
wretched, careless, and play-infatuated child! Then thou
didst take the Ring from off my finger, while I was sleeping,
and gavest it to the old swindler? Speak, speak! Did
you do that ? Tell the truth, Gackeleia, or I--"
Then Gackeleia was much terrified, and sobbed out:
"Father Gockel, pardon me;
Mother Hinkel, set me free !
Yes, when father was asleep,
Gently I to him did creep;
Took his Ring, but for a minute
Longer he did not look in it:
And he gave me back the Ring,
Which to father I did bring.
Never will I do again
Such a thing-behold my pain !
Ah, if only you had seen
My dear Doll, no-Art-machine,
Like a child, almost alive,
Surely you would then forgive !"
And here she drew the doll from out her pocket, wound
her up, and the little figure danced up and down so grace-
fully and prettily among the thyme and heather and blue-
bells, that Gackeleia clapped her hands with delight. But
at this moment Gockel caught hold of her by the arm and
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GACKELEIA. 85
Now I have got you at last, you naughty child! Did
I not forbid you a thousand times not to touch my Ring
without permission ? You gave it to an old rogue who
exchanged it for one not worth a brass farthing; and thus
you have brought your parents and yourself into disgrace
and poverty, all through your coveting a miserable doll."
But Gackeleia screamed, and tried to get away from her
"It is not a Doll, I ween,
But a lovely Art-machine,
Father dear, please let me go ?
See, she's running there below,
Over stick, and stone, and trees-
Mother Hinkel, stop her, please ?
Else she'll break her neck, I say,
Knowing neither path nor way."
For the little doll was running down the slope of the hill
like mad, and as Dame Hinkel was going to stop her she
slipped on the slippery grass, and rolled down the mountain
for a considerable distance. On seeing this, old Gockel
waxed still more angry and impatient, and said :
"Here is another misfortune, all through your detest-
able doll! I'm sure your mother has broken her leg.
But right goes before all; you have acted in an unpardon-
able manner, so now choose, Gackeleia. Either you let
the doll run wherever it listeth, or I shall give you a taste
of this rod ?"
Then, as Gackeleia cried lamentably:
"It is not a Doll, I ween,
But a lovely Art-machine !"
Gockel, without more ado, chastised her smartly, calling
"It is not a Rod, I ween,
But a wholesome Art-machine."
86 NE W FAIR Y TALES FROM BRENTANO.
But Gackeleia screamed:
"Mother, stop yon truant elf,
She will fall and hurt herself"
Then Gockel again called out:
"Swish and swash, and swish again,
All next week you'll feel the pain;
Which, I trust, will be your gain !"
And in moral anticipation of such a satisfactory result, he
would have gone on with his chastisement had not Dame
Hinkel shrieked so dismally for help, that Gockel had to
let Gackeleia go and run to help her. Scarcely was
Gackeleia free when she shook herself all over, and ran
after her little doll, who was just running in the valley
below, across the plank over a brook. But the doll ran so
fast, as though she had four legs, crossed the brook, and
then disappeared into the forest on the opposite side,
Gackeleia always following her.
In the meantime Gockel had helped up Dame Hinkel,
and they lamented together the loss of their wonderful
Ring, and agreed how the old man who had cheated
Gackeleia so effectually was surely one of the Oriental Seal
Engravers who had wanted to buy Alectryo. When they
arrived at the spot where Gackeleia had been chastised
they could see her nowhere, and called to Gackeleia on
every side. But they heard and saw nothing of her.
Then their sorrow for all their losses was changed into
a great anxiety for their child. They ran up and down,
and called through the forest:
Gackeleia 1 Gackeleia !"
But when the echo answered: "Eia! eia!" they
thought it was their little daughter answering them; and
so they lost themselves farther and farther in the wilderness
until they arrived-but, alas, without Gackeleia-at their
ruined ancestral castle.
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GACKELEIA. 87
The birds all woke up and flew around them, and
greeted them as old friends and acquaintances; but Gockel
and Hinkel only cried:
Gackeleia oh, dear Gackeleia, do come back Yes, it
is an Art-machine! Only come home to us, and nothing
shall happen to you, if we only have you once more safe in
But no answer came to them from out the forest.
Then the poor parents sat down on the threshold of
the old hen-roost, and cried bitterly the long night through,
and all the birds wept with them.
But in the morning Gockel cut a stout staff for himself,
and another for Dame Hinkel, and said :
My dear wife, we have become poor, but it beseems
not the Marquis Gockel of Dorking and the Countess
Hinkel of Langshan to despair, despite their grievous
misfortunes. Let us, therefore, trust in God, and seek our
dear daughter Gackeleia throughout the wide world, even
should we die of hunger on the way. Do you go to the
left, I will go to the right; and every month we will come
together again in this castle. We can then discuss what-
ever we may have discovered, and at the same time keep a
sharp look-out for the thief of our Ring."
Dame Hinkel agreed to this. They both embraced
with bitter tears, and then separated, Gockel going to the
right and Dame Hinkel to the left. When they came to
any towns or villages they sang this song before all the
"Say, have you not lately seen
A little girl, of pretty mien?
Cheeks so red, and eyes of blue,
Little teeth for biting through;
Lips as ruddy as a cherry,
Fat and plump, and blithe and merry;
Glossy, like a chestnut brown,
She sings and dances up and down;
An old jacket she doth wear,
And a straw hat shades her hair;
NE W FAIR Y TALES FROM BRENTANO.
And all eager she doth follow
A runaway and pretty Dolly :
Crying, Tis no Doll, I ween,
But a lovely Art-machine !'
Barefoot are her little feet.
If you ask, 'Your name, my Sweet ?
She will brightly answer : 'Why-ah,
I am Gockel's Gackeleia !'
This same child I've lost, alas,
And a solemn oath I've passed-
Not to rest from toil and pain
Till I find my child again "
But the people always answered:
"No child like this we've seen this day-
Alas, you must go on your way !
A piece of bread we'll gladly give,
May God your anguish s )re believe."
Then the afflicted parents took the bread offered them,
ate it with tears, and sorrowfully went on their way.
Thus they had met already three times in their old
castle, and each time without having found Gackeleia.
They used to lament all night in their fowl-house, and tell
each other of their fruitless researches.
Oh dear," said Dame Hinkel, "I am quite sure the
poor dear child is dead. If you only had not punished her
so severely on account of that doll!"
But Gockel replied:
If you had taken greater care of her, my dear, we
should have lost neither the child nor the Ring. Nothing
is easier than to say, If you only had.' But, instead of
bandying reproaches, let us rather repair to the chapel, and
there, on the grave of Alectryo, let us devoutly, and with
all our hearts, offer up a prayer that our fourth search
to-morrow may not be in vain."
This they did, and having prayed most earnestly, they
lay down, much comforted, on their couch of moss; and
soon they were wrapt in sweet slumbers, and dreamed of
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GACKELEIA. 89
Towards morning, Gockel heard something, half in his
sleep, clattering and rattling past him. It was still very
dark in the room, but.he fancied he saw something running
along the floor, and as quickly disappearing. He nudged
Dame Hinkel and said:
I fancied just now that Gackeleia's detestable doll
had run past us."
Then a voice said:
"It is not a Doll, I ween,
But a lovely Art-machine."
Gockel thought that Dame Hinkel had uttered these
words, and reproved her-for being as obstinate as Gacke-
leia on this point. But Dame Hinkel, heavy with sleep,
had also heard the words, and insisted on Gockel's having
spoken them himself. This naturally made him very
indignant, and they were just going to quarrel when some
one softly knocked at the door.
They were not a little startled when they reflected who,
in all the world, could be knocking at their door, in the old
deserted castle. But when the knocking was repeated for
the third time Gockel summoned up courage to ask loudly:
"Who is outside ?"
Then a man's voice answered:
I humbly ask your Excellency's pardon for disturbing
you at so early an hour, but the people below will not
leave me in peace. They say that they are to have three
hundredweight of cheese from your Excellency's dairy,
and I did not like giving it them without your Excellency's
Gockel did not know, when he heard these words,
whether he was awake or dreaming, and repeated :
They want three hundredweight of cheese from my
dairy Did you hear that, Hinkel ? "
"Yes," said Dame Hinkel, "I heard it too, but I
cannot understand it. What does it mean ? "
NE W FAIR Y TALES FROM BPRENTANO.
But as the man kept on knocking, and begging for
permission to give three hundredweight of cheese to the
applicants, Gockel grew very angry, and called out:
"Are you, who are knocking, a lunatic, or a mocker
who is making fun of a poor old man ? If the latter, then
beware, for I shall speedily make you acquainted with my
cudgel. Where on earth should I have three hundred-
weight of cheese and a dairy-I, who scarcely have dry
bread to eat ? Be off, I say, and leave the poor their only
property-quiet and slumber."
Then the voice answered again:
"I pray your Excellency to pardon me for having
unwillingly broken your slumbers. I see, however, that
your Excellency is not inclined to let the people have the
cheese, so I shall send them about their business."
Then Gockel heard voices speaking together in the
yard, and footsteps going to and fro, and his amazement,
as to what this could possibly portend, grew with every
moment. At last he said:
"Alas, Hinkel, I am afraid this is a conspiracy on the
part of our enemies to murder us."
How shocking! cried out Dame Hinkel, very
frightened, and creeping closer to Gockel. Just then came
another knock at the door, and Gockel answered in a
manly, though rather trembling, voice:
"Who is it?"
Then another voice answered:
Your Excellency's Chef de Cuisine begs humbly to
inquire whether he may deliver a hundredweight of smoked
hams, from your Excellency's smoking and curing rooms ?
They are to be loaded on to three donkeys, which have
been sent for the purpose from his Mouse Majesty, King
Gockel was perfectly dumbfoundered at this new speech,
but he jumped up, and cried, fumbling for his stick:
I'll smoke you, and cure you too, my man."
But at that instant three donkeys outside set up so
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKAEL, AND GACKELEIA. 91
thrilling and soul-inspiring a bray that Gockel and Hinkel
called out together:
Mercy on us, if the donkeys are not actually there!"
It was still dark in the fowl-house, which had no win-
dows, and which was just faintly lit up by a glimmer of
daylight through a chink in the wall. As Gockel was
groping along the wall for his stick, he suddenly felt him-
self tenderly embraced by two soft arms.
Goodness gracious who is that ?" he cried out loudly;
but the fair unknown never stopped smothering him with
the tenderest kisses and caresses, and when Dame Hinkel
came up, she fared no better. At last, when they had
quite lost themselves in conjectures as to who it was that
thus caressed them, a well-known voice said:
Oh, dearest parents, don't you know your daughter
Gackeleia when you see her?"
You Gackeleia!" both cried out, amazed. No, that
can never be; why, you are a grown-up young lady! "
"Never mind whether I am little or grown up,"
answered the voice; I am your own Gackeleia all the
And here she pulled open the door, when so much that
was strange and wonderful fell into Gockel's and Hinkel's
eyes at one and the same moment, that they were quite
overcome, and fell into each other's arms, and cried heartily,
but this time with joy.
For, first of all, they saw indeed their very own Gacke-
leia standing before them, a little girl no longer, but a
lovely richly-dressed maiden; and, secondly, they saw
themselves, no longer old and poor, and clad in rags, but
two handsome, comely persons, in the prime of life; and,
thirdly, on looking through the door, they no longer saw a
dilapidated courtyard, choked with rubbish and weeds, but
a large, clean, paved square, surrounded by out-houses and
stables. In the middle of the courtyard, where a foun-
tain was plashing gently, three sulky old donkeys, with long
ears, were tethered; they stuck their heads close together,
92 NE W FAIRY TALES FROM BRENTANO.
as if they were ashamed of themselves. Servants in
undress, and servants in rich livery, went to and fro, and
whenever they passed the fowl-house they bowed low, or
touched their caps. At last Gockel cried :
This can never be true! It's quite impossible!
How can this marvel have happened ?"
Then Gackeleia stretched out her beautiful white hand
to her father, and gazed smilingly into his eyes, whereupon
Gockel suddenly called out :
Oh, you have the Ring The precious Ring of King
Solomon; 'tis back again. The Ring which you lost for
the sake of a doll !"
But Gackeleia said quickly:
"It is not a Doll, I ween,
But a lovely Art-machine."
Then Gockel said, quite sweetly:
Call it whatever you like, my dear It is all the same
to me, now everything has turned out so well."
But tell me however you managed it all ?" said Dame
Hinkel, who had walked admiringly round her daughter,
and was never tired of looking at her, or of kissing and
embracing her newly-found child. "Do tell us all about
it, Gackeleia dearest ? "
"Yes, tell us all about it," said Gockel, pressing her to
But Gackeleia said:
Do not praise me too much, father dear, for we owe
all our new happiness to you alone!"
To me," said Gockel, "that is very strange! Alas, I
have done nothing but wander about the world, begging
my way, and looking for you, dear child!"
Then Gackeleia answered:
It is as I have said. You shall hear all about it;
only let us first find a nice place to tell the story in.
We will now inspect the castle of our beloved ancestors,
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GACKELEIA. 93
which has been newly decorated and furnished throughout.
I am sure we shall find a room we shall like to sit in better
than this old fowl-house; which we shall have to vacate
as it is, for all the poultry which is coming to fill it."
Then Gackeleia turned her ring, saying:
"Solomon, thou sapient King,
By the power of this Ring
Fill the fowl-house quite, I pray,
With fine poultry, bright and gay I
Let the hens be pecking round,
Cackling, scratching in the ground;
Let their haughty chanticleer
Tend and watch them without fear;
Let him guard them with his eye,
Waving comb and tail on high,-
Spurred and proud let him strut by;
Valiant let him beat his wings,
Crowing high and mighty things,
That each at his sight may see
He's a knight, in verity !
Peacocks give, of gorgeous sheen,
Pacing their grey wives between;
Spreading out their golden eyes,
Hark, they utter mournful cries,
When the fair and radiant sun,
Sets in evening shadows dun.
Turkey-cocks next too bestow,
Choleric and wrathful; lo,
How their wattles blaze and glow!
Gobbling, rumbling in hot rage
When they see the scarlet badge,
And who swell and puff with pride
As they strut their hens beside.
Give us ducks, bright as October;
Snowy geese, demure and sober,
Who discreetly gaze and smile,
Standing on one leg the while;
Or who waddle, solemn, slow,
Screaming, to the brook below.
Then let Swans, like ivory bright,
Or skiffs of silver, gleaming light,
Sail in calm and stately pride
Silent down the limpid tide.
94 NE WV FAIRY TALES FROM BRENTANO.
On the roof, I want to see
Pigeons tumbling, glad and free;
Necks of iridescent hue,
Tumblers, pouters, fantails, too !
Let all be the best and fairest,
Prettiest, sweetest, quaintest, rarest!
Dearest Ring, oh grant, I pray,
All I ask of you this day !"
Scarcely had Gackeleia said this when the door of the
fowl-house, which they had meantime left, was again
opened, and forth into the yard streamed and swarmed
a crowd of the brightest-coloured fowls, peacocks, turkey-
cocks, ducks, geese, and swans, while the roof of the castle
was covered with the most beautiful pigeons. Gockel and
Hinkel were perfectly delighted with this splendid poultry
flock, and after they had sufficiently admired them they
entered the castle.
With glad and eager interest they inspected a stately
row of chambers and rooms, all made as beautiful and
comfortable as the costliest furniture could render them.
When they had looked at every room, they at last sat
down in the verandah of a turret, at the very top of the
castle, from whence they had an uninterrupted view, right
over the forest, to the steeples of Eggville, far away in
"This is a nice place," said Gackeleia, "and here I
will relate to you all that has happened to me, and how
I regained the precious Ring. But first of all let us have
She had scarcely said this, slightly turning the Ring,
when an Ancient Retainer brought in a large tray, piled up
with fruit, sandwiches, cakes, wine, and milk. When he
had put it down he asked again whether the three donkeys
down below should be laden with cheese and hams ?
Certainly," said Gackeleia, and see that every-
thing selected be of the very best. I shall order the rest
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GACKELEIA. 95
Then Gockel and Hinkel, who were very curious to
hear her story, begged of her to begin without delay,
when Gackeleia related as follows:
"When you punished me so sorely on that miserable
day, dear father, I was so anxious for the safety of my
doll,-I did not mean to say doll, because it really and
truly is only a lovely Art-machine;-well, I was so alarmed
for the safety of my Art-machine, that I never felt your
birchen rod at all. I only waited for the moment to be
set free, when I could run after my little truant, who was
running down the mountain, as she had never in her life
run before. Just then mother cried for help, you let go of
me, and I, like an arrow on the wing, sped after the little
She ran across the brook into the forest, over brambles
and briars, and several times already I was nearly close
enough to catch her ; but whenever I stretched out my
hand to do so, she began to run away again so quickly that
at last, tired out, I sank on the ground, and said, weeping:
"' Oh, my dear little Flower Girl, how very ungrateful
you are! I love you so dearly, so tenderly, that I have
suffered a humiliating punishment rather than let you go,
and, behold, you now run away from me, as though I were
your bitterest enemy !'
When I had called out these words, I suddenly
remembered how very far I had wandered away from you,
my dear parents; I saw the sun was about to set and did
not know which way to turn. In despair I called aloud,
'Father Gockel! Mother Hinkel!' but all in vain.
Then, utterly exhausted, I fell into a deep sleep, and
continually dreamed of the runaway figure, and as I was
saying to her in my dream, I am sure you are no doll, but
only a lovely Art-machine,' I heard a very fine shrill little
voice piping at my ear, 'To tell you the truth, my dear
Gackeleia, 1 am neither an Art-machine nor a doll, but'--
Here I made a pounce with both hands, and luckily caught
her again; for I had meanwhile awoke when she had
NE W FAIR Y TA LES FROM BRENTANO.
spoken the above words to me, and had peeped through
my closed eye-lashes, in order to catch her unexpectedly.
"'Now you shall not escape from me again,' said I,
'especially now I know that you can speak. I love you
more than ever. Now, wait a bit, I will give you some
Then I put some bread crumbs into her mouth, and
heard her munching and crunching them. Then I begged
her earnestly to tell me who she was; but she was as
silent as before, and never said a word. I was quite vexed
at this, and tied her to my arm with my garter, pulled my
apron over my face, and, with a prayer to be protected
throughout the night, and to find my parents again next
day, I fell fast asleep again.
Then I dreamed once more of the little gardener maid,
and it seemed to me as though she said these words :
"' Please don't wake up, Gackeleia dear, for only in
your dreams can you understand my words. You must
know that I am very fond of you, because you preferred
the rod to giving me up. Now, the truth is, I am no
Art-machine at all, but a poor imprisoned princess, and I
only ran away from you so fast because I wanted to see
my husband, Prince Piffi, so much; who, I know, is in
perfect despair at my loss. He and all the royal mouse
family live scarcely an hour from here, and you may
judge how fond I am of you, as, instead of leaving you to
run home when you were sleeping, I returned to you to
answer your severe reproaches as to my ingratitude. You
see, you can only understand me while you are sleeping.
"'Do you mean to say that you are a princess?' I
asked, quite astonished, 'and that your husband, the prince,
and all the royal family are such sweet little delicate figures
as yourself? Oh, how I should love to see them please do
take me to your home and show them to me!'
"' Fortunately they are not of such a shape as I am,'
the figure answered, 'because then they would be as miser-
able as I, the poor little Mouse Princess Sissi of Almond
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GACKELEIA. 97
Bite, who has. this horrid figure fastened on to her back,
which she is obliged to carry about with her every-
Well I never!" cried out Gockel, "why that is the
very same little Mouse Princess whose life I saved from
the cat the very first night we slept in this castle, and
whom I afterwards carried into her own country."
That is so," said Gackeleia, "and, moreover, she is
not ungrateful, for to her we owe the re-capture of the Ring
and all our present happiness."
This is really touching," said Dame Hinkel.
Well, to be sure said Gockel. "This only proves
that one ought never to miss an opportunity of doing good,
even to the smallest and most insignificant creatures. I
shall, in future, take particular care to carry about with
me a small pair of pinchers to extract thorns from the foot
of any stray lion ; or a double tooth from the aching jaw of
a tiger ; or a bone from the throat of a choking stork or
crane; while I shall pay especial attention to any signs of
distress in bees, wasps, bluebottles, or butterflies; and
even snails and worms may be, with safety, and possible
profit, given an occasional lift or two. I would earnestly
counsel you to do the same, my dears, seeing you never
can tell the result of a good action. But now let us
return to our good Mouse Princess, and hear the sequel."
Then Gackeleia went on with her tale :
Princess Sissi then told me how very good you had
been to her and her husband, Prince Piffi, and was in great
distress that she should have partly been the cause of our
misfortune; much against her will, of course. She promised,
however, that if, I would release her from the doll's figure,
and follow her, to her own capital, she would do her very
utmost to help us regain the Ring. But she added that it
would be necessary, when I was in the capital of Mice, and
she should have called together a National Council, to try
and go to sleep, in order that I might understand the
language of her people. This I promised to do, and then
98 NEW FAIRY TALES FROM BRENTANO.
begged of her to tell me how she had got fixed to this
'Alas,' said Princess Sissi, 'I accompanied my hus-
band, Prince Piffi, on a short voyage. One night we put
up at an inn, where were three old men, who had long grey
beards, and who said that they were Seal Engravers. I was
tempted to rise in the middle of the night and follow up a
delicious smell of bacon fat. Then I found myself suddenly
caught in a trap. One of the old men looked at the trap
in the morning, and said :
"' This is just the mouse I want," and instantly
fastened me with some wire to a little doll's silken skirt,
which he pulled out of his pocket. He was in perfect
ecstasies of delight, as I ran up and down with the doll on
my back, and which was too heavy to allow me to escape.
At first I ran recklessly against table and chairs, but when
"'" If this little mouse does not soon become tame, I
shall throw her to the cat," I was so terribly frightened at
the cruel threat that I did all he wanted me to do. But I
always cherished the hope of escaping one day, whenever
a fitting opportunity should occur, and, as you know, I did
manage to run away. Love of liberty, and the conscious-
ness that I was so near home, gave me exceptional
strength, and so we have safely got as far as here. And
now, Gackeleia dear, do not be startled because I am going
to give you a tiny little wee bite in your ear in order that
you may set me free. Then you must follow me to the
capital, where I will show you a corner where you can go
to sleep, and then I will assemble my National Council
around you.' Scarcely had she said this, when she gently
bit my ear, and I awoke.
"It was in the middle of the night, and the moon
shone brightly. I instantly examined the doll figure, and
beheld the prettiest little white mouse imaginable, having
a little golden crown on its head, while the doll was
fastened with wire on to her back. I carefully loosened
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HINKEL, AND GACKELEIA. 99
the wire, and the Mouse Princess, wild with delight, leaped
up high and capered in the grass before me. I followed
her, but she hastened on so fast that I often lost sight
of her. Then I would anxiously cry out:
Mouse Princess! oh, Mouse Princess! please do not
leave me in the lurch!' Then she would squeak a shrill
squeak and jump up high to show me the way, and in this
way I managed to follow her.
"When we had thus gone on for half an hour, I heard
a great squeaking, and suddenly saw the capital of the King
of Mice, lying on and around a hill, bathed in moonlight,
which now I will describe to you.
"The Princess Sissi had scarcely arrived at the town
gates, when they flew open before her, and a joyful
squeaking resounded throughout the city and the royal
palace built on the top of the hill. Presently innumerable
white mice rushed to meet her, and she was received with
universal and loud acclamations. But the Princess would
not enter the palace,,but kept on turning from the -mice
toward myself, and seemed to be telling them all about me.
So all the mice turned their heads my way and squeaked
and piped a great deal, which I could not understand.
So I said to them:
My dear Mice! I am now going to lie down and go
to sleep, in order that I may understand you.' Scarcely
had I spoken these words, when thousands began rushing
about to fetch some soft moss, which they piled up in a
cosy hollow at the foot of a large oak tree. I presently
saw that this was intended to be a bed for me, and so,
while they were getting it ready, I had a good look at the
beautiful City of Mice.
On the top of the hill stood the royal palace, in the
shape of a large square, formed of immense Dutch cheeses,
which had been carefully gnawed, till they were perfectly
clean and hollow. The doors and windows, indeed, were
slightly old-fashioned, and not equally distributed; but still
the castle had a venerable aspect, being built strictly in
TOO NE W FAIRY TALES FROM BRENIANO.
pyramidical and perspective style. Round about the
palace, and on its very roof, lovely gardens of fine crusted
old mildew were growing, and never have I seen it grow
higher or in finer condition anywhere. Towers and
turrets of cheese parings were tiled with almond shells,
instead of tiles, and gave the building, architecturally, an
imposing appearance. The citizens lived in hollowed-out
gourds, pumpkins, melons, quarter loaves and rolls,
according to the size of their families and the rent they
were able to pay; some lived in old boots and shoes; while
the nobility lived in old cavalry boots, cartridge boxes,
knapsacks, portmanteaus, felt hats, and old helmets which
had been left on the battlefields. All these latter buildings
seemed, however, to be rather in want of repair. These
buildings all lay in regular rows round the castle hill,
and all had little gardens of fungus and mildew, which
looked very quaint and pretty, and showed that the mice
possessed considerable horticultural taste. I even saw an
old boot covered with the rare creeper, Cobwebbia,' and
very pretty it looked. I also noticed many holes and
caverns going into the earth, which were cellars and larders
for the nation of mice. In an open square stood a large
Gothic cathedral, built of the bleached white skulls of
horses, and decorated with thousands of bone splinters.
Round the cathedral was the churchyard, and all the
graves were beautifully and symmetrically arranged, while
in the midst stood the charnel-house, white as ivory, and
ornamented with the countless bones and skeletons of dead
mice. It was built by their famous king, Mousolus I., and
hence was called the Mousoleum.
I could not sufficiently admire this wonderful City of
Mice, and the moon shed so bright and clear a light into
this tiny and swarming community that it was a real plea-
sure to look on the strange scene. Meanwhile, they had
finished my bed of moss; and by this time I was so tired
that I lay down, and was soon asleep. Upon this all the
Royal Family and the National Council assembled around
THE STORY OF GOCKEL, HIfVKEL, AND GACKEELEIA. o10
me, and I heard and could understand all their discus-
First of all, her Royal Parents and her Husband con-
gratulated Princess Sissi on her happy escape; whereupon
she told them that she thought they must not neglect the
opportunity of showing their gratitude to the family of the
Marquis of Dorking, who had, twice already, been the
means of saving her life. She also related how I had
heroically endured the rod for her sake, when an aged
Mouse Counsellor gravely rose and proposed the following
resolution to the meeting:
Firstly, he said, there was no doubt that I deserved
punishment, having formerly been so fond of cats; and,
secondly, he would warn them that it behoved them to be
very cautious how they trusted me, as, for all they knew, I
might still be a Feline Spy.
This suspicion hurt me so dreadfully that I energetically,
and even tearfully, defended myself against the base impu-
tation; and this had so great an effect on the assembly
that the old Counsellor was politely, but firmly, requested
to shut up.
Then Prince Piffi arose and settled the matter in the
'After that miserable night, on which my beloved Sissi
was made prisoner by the three old Oriental Natural Philo-
sophers, who tied her to this miserable doll, I journeyed
several times all round the world to'find her again. I had
quite lost sight of the three old rogues and cheats. One
evening I arrived at a castle, where I intended to pass
the night. There, in a large saloon, I saw three insolent
young fellows quarrelling violently among themselves, and
on the table between them lay a beautiful and sparkling Ring,
which each desired to have; and, consequently, each pushed
and hustled the others away from it. Each wore a different
and strange uniform, and they called themselves Court
Counsellors, Court Agents, and Licensed Court Victuallers.
They shouted, and roared, and vociferated, and hulla-