日本語

賢い百姓娘

ENGLISH

The peasant's wise daughter


昔、貧しい百姓がいました。土地がなく、たった小さな家と一人の娘しかありませんでした。それで、娘は、「王様に新しく切り開いた土地を少しもらうべきだわ。」と言いました。王様はこの親子が貧しいのを聞くと、一区切りの土地を贈りました。その土地を娘と父親は掘り起こし、少しの麦とその種の穀物を播こうとしていました。畑のほぼ全体を掘った時、純金でできているすり鉢を見つけました。「なあ、王様がとても親切にしてくれてこの畑をくださったのだから、お返しにこのすりばちをさしあげるべきだよ。」と父親は娘に言いました。ところが娘はこれに賛成しようとしませんでした。「お父さん、すりこぎも一緒に持たないですり鉢をもっていけば、すりこぎも手に入れさせられるわ。だからそのことは何も言わない方がいいわよ。」しかし、父親は娘の言うことをきかないで、すり鉢を持って王様のところに行き、切り開いた土地の中にこれを見つけました、贈り物としてお収めいただけるでしょうか、と言いました。王様はすり鉢を手にとり、そばに何も見つけなかったか?と尋ねました。はい、と百姓は答えました。

すると王様は、今度はすりこぎを持ってこなくてはならんな、と言いました。百姓は、すりこぎはみつからなかった、と言いましたが、風に話しているようなもので、牢屋に入れられ、すりこぎを出すまではそこにいることになりました。家来たちは毎日百姓にパンと水を、それが牢屋にいる人々がもらうものなので、運ばなければなりませんでしたが、男がずっと「ああ、娘のいうことをきいていたらよかったよ、ああ、娘のいうことをきいていたらよかったよ、」と叫ぶのが聞こえ、男は食べようとも飲もうともしませんでした。それで王様は家来に命じて牢屋の百姓を連れてこさせ、なぜいつも娘のいうことをきいていたらよかったと泣いているのか、娘は何と言っていたのか、と百姓に尋ねました。「娘はすり鉢を持っていくべきでない、というのはすりこぎも出さなくてはいけなくなるだろうから、と私に言ったのです。」「それほど賢い娘がいるなら、娘をここに来させろ。」

それで娘は王様のまえに出ていかなければなりませんでした。王様は、お前は本当にそんなに賢いのかと尋ね、「なぞをかけてみるぞ。もしお前がそれを解ければお前と結婚しよう。」と言いました。娘はすぐに「はい、解いてみせましょう。」と言いました。それで王様は「服を着ないで、裸でもなく、乗らないで歩かないで、道の中ではなく道から離れないで、わしのところに来てみろ。それができればお前と結婚しよう。」と言いました。

それで娘はひきさがり、着ていたものを全部脱ぎ、それで服を着ていなくなり、大きな魚とり用の網を持って来てその中に座り体をすっかりぐるぐる巻きにしました。それで裸ではなくなりました。それからロバを借りてきて、尻尾に漁師の網を結わえつけました。それでロバに娘をひきずらせました、これで乗ってもいなくて歩いてもいないことになりました。ロバはまたわだちの中を娘をひきずらなければいけなかったので、娘は足の親指だけが地面に触れていて、それで道の中でもなく、道から離れてもいなくなりました。このようにして娘が着いたとき、王様は、お前はなぞをとき全部の条件を満たした、と言いました。

それから王様は父親を牢屋から出すように命じ、娘を妻に迎え、王室の財産を娘に任せました。さて何年か過ぎて、あるとき王様は閲兵式を視察していたとき、木を売っていた百姓たちが宮殿の前で荷車を止めていました。荷車は牛にひかせているのもあれば馬にひかせているのもありました。一人の百姓に馬が三頭いましたが、そのうちの一頭が仔馬を産みました。その仔馬が逃げて荷車の前にいた二頭の牛の間に横になりました。百姓たちが一緒になると、言い争いをしてお互いをなぐりさわぎを起こし始めました。牛の方の百姓は仔馬を持っていようとし、牛の一頭がそれを産んだのだと言いました。もう一方の百姓は自分の馬が産んだのだ、その仔馬は自分の物だ、と言いました。喧嘩は王様の前に持ち込まれ、王様は、仔馬は見つかったところにいるべきだと判決を言い渡しました。それで牛の方の百姓が、自分の物で無い仔馬を手に入れました。

それからもう一方の百姓は去っていき、泣いて仔馬のことを嘆きました。さてこの百姓はお后が自分が貧しい百姓から出たのでとても慈悲深いとききました。それでお后のところへ行き、自分の仔馬を取り戻す手伝いをしていただけないでしょうかとお願いしました。お后は、「いいですよ。私のことをもらさないと約束するなら、どうしたらよいか教えましょう。」と言いました。

「明日の朝早く、王様が衛兵を閲兵するとき、王様が通らなくてはならない道の真ん中にいて、大きな魚とり網を持って魚取りをしているふりをしなさい。魚取りを続けて網がいっぱいになったふりをして網から魚を出すのよ。」それから、お后は、王様に問いただされたら何と言ったらいいかも百姓に教えました。それで、次の日、百姓はそこに立ち、乾いた地面で魚取りをしました。王様がとおりがかり、それを見て、あの馬鹿な男が何をしているか訊いて来いと使いの者を送りました。百姓は「魚取りをしています。」と答えました。使いの者が、「そこに水がないのにどうやって魚をとることができるのだ?」と尋ねると、百姓は、「私が乾いた土で魚をとるのは牛が仔馬を産むのと同じくらい簡単ですよ。」と言いました。

使いの者は戻って王様にその答えを告げました。すると王様は百姓を連れて来いと命じ、これは自分で考えたことではあるまい、と言い、誰の考えか知りたがりました。王様は、「すぐに白状せよ。」と百姓に言いましたが、百姓はどうしても白状しないで、いつも「とんでもない、自分で考えたことです。」と言いました。それで、家来たちが百姓をわらの山にねかせ、殴って、長い間痛めつけたので、とうとうお后からその考えをもらったと認めてしまいました。

王様は家へ帰ると、妻に「お前はどうしてわしにそんなに不実にしたのだ?もうお前を妻にしておく気がない。お前の時は終わりだ。お前が来たところ、お前の小屋へ戻れ。」と言いました。しかし、王様は一つだけ許し、お后から見て最も大切で、最もよいものを一つ一緒に持って行ってよい、それでお前とはお終いだ、と言いました。

お后は、「はい、あなた、それがご命令なら、そう致します。」と言って、王様を抱きしめキスをし、お別れいたします、と言いました。それからお后は強い眠り薬をもってこさせ、王様と別れの盃をかわしました。王様はごくごく飲みましたが、お后はほんの少し飲んだだけでした。王様はまもなく深く眠り込みました。お后はそれがわかると、家来を呼び、きれいな白い敷布を出し王様を包み込み、家来に運ばせて入口のまえにある馬車に王様を乗せました。そして自分の小さな家に王様と一緒に馬車でいきました。

お后は王様を自分の小さなベッドにねかせ、王様は目覚めないで一昼夜眠っていました。目が覚めると周りを見回し、「おや、ここはどこだ?」と言いました。王様は従者たちを呼びましたが、誰もそこにいませんでした。とうとう妻がベッドのそばにやってきて、「私の大切な王様、あなたは私に、私に最も大切で貴重なものを宮殿から持っていってよい、とおっしゃいました。私には、あなたご自身より貴重で大切なものはありません。それで私はあなたを一緒にお連れしました。」と言いました。

涙が王様の目にわいてきて、王様は「愛する妻よ。お前は私のもので、私はお前のものだ。」と言いました。そして、宮殿にお后を連れて戻ると、もう一度結婚しました。それでね、今、このお二人はまだ生きているようですよ。
There was once a poor peasant who had no land, but only a small house, and one daughter. Then said the daughter, "We ought to ask our lord the King for a bit of newly-cleared land." When the King heard of their poverty, he presented them with a piece of land, which she and her father dug up, and intended to sow with a little corn and grain of that kind. When they had dug nearly the whole of the field, they found in the earth a mortar made of pure gold. "Listen," said the father to the girl, "as our lord the King has been so gracious and presented us with the field, we ought to give him this mortar in return for it." The daughter, however, would not consent to this, and said, "Father, if we have the mortar without having the pestle as well, we shall have to get the pestle, so you had much better say nothing about it." He would, however, not obey her, but took the mortar and carried it to the King, said that he had found it in the cleared land, and asked if he would accept it as a present. The King took the mortar, and asked if he had found nothing besides that? "No," answered the countryman. Then the King said that he must now bring him the pestle. The peasant said they had not found that, but he might just as well have spoken to the wind; he was put in prison, and was to stay there until he produced the pestle. The servants had daily to carry him bread and water, which is what people get in prison, and they heard how the man cried out continually, "Ah! if I had but listened to my daughter! Alas, alas, if I had but listened to my daughter!" and would neither eat nor drink. So he commanded the servants to bring the prisoner before him, and then the King asked the peasant why he was always crying, "Ah! if I had but listened to my daughter!" and what it was that his daughter had said. "She told me that I ought not to take the mortar to you, for I should have to produce the pestle as well." - "If you have a daughter who is as wise as that, let her come here." She was therefore obliged to appear before the King, who asked her if she really was so wise, and said he would set her a riddle, and if she could guess that, he would marry her. She at once said yes, she would guess it. Then said the King, "Come to me not clothed, not naked, not riding, not walking, not in the road, and not out of the road, and if thou canst do that I will marry thee." So she went away, put off everything she had on, and then she was not clothed, and took a great fishing net, and seated herself in it and wrapped it entirely round and round her, so that she was not naked, and she hired an ass, and tied the fisherman's net to its tail, so that it was forced to drag her along, and that was neither riding nor walking. The ass had also to drag her in the ruts, so that she only touched the ground with her great toe, and that was neither being in the road nor out of the road. And when she arrived in that fashion, the King said she had guessed the riddle and fulfilled all the conditions. Then he ordered her father to be released from the prison, took her to wife, and gave into her care all the royal possessions.
Now when some years had passed, the King was once drawing up his troops on parade, when it happened that some peasants who had been selling wood stopped with their waggons before the palace; some of them had oxen yoked to them, and some horses. There was one peasant who had three horses, one of which was delivered of a young foal, and it ran away and lay down between two oxen which were in front of the waggon. When the peasants came together, they began to dispute, to beat each other and make a disturbance, and the peasant with the oxen wanted to keep the foal, and said one of the oxen had given birth to it, and the other said his horse had had it, and that it was his. The quarrel came before the King, and he give the verdict that the foal should stay where it had been found, and so the peasant with the oxen, to whom it did not belong, got it. Then the other went away, and wept and lamented over his foal. Now he had heard how gracious his lady the Queen was because she herself had sprung from poor peasant folks, so he went to her and begged her to see if she could not help him to get his foal back again. Said she, "Yes, I will tell you what to do, if thou wilt promise me not to betray me. Early to-morrow morning, when the King parades the guard, place thyself there in the middle of the road by which he must pass, take a great fishing-net and pretend to be fishing; go on fishing, too, and empty out the net as if thou hadst got it full" and then she told him also what he was to say if he was questioned by the King. The next day, therefore, the peasant stood there, and fished on dry ground. When the King passed by, and saw that, he sent his messenger to ask what the stupid man was about? He answered, "I am fishing." The messenger asked how he could fish when there was no water there? The peasant said, "It is as easy for me to fish on dry land as it is for an ox to have a foal." The messenger went back and took the answer to the King, who ordered the peasant to be brought to him and told him that this was not his own idea, and he wanted to know whose it was? The peasant must confess this at once. The peasant, however, would not do so, and said always, God forbid he should! the idea was his own. They laid him, however, on a heap of straw, and beat him and tormented him so long that at last he admitted that he had got the idea from the Queen.

When the King reached home again, he said to his wife, "Why hast thou behaved so falsely to me? I will not have thee any longer for a wife; thy time is up, go back to the place from whence thou camest to thy peasant's hut." One favour, however, he granted her; she might take with her the one thing that was dearest and best in her eyes; and thus was she dismissed. She said, "Yes, my dear husband, if you command this, I will do it," and she embraced him and kissed him, and said she would take leave of him. Then she ordered a powerful sleeping draught to be brought, to drink farewell to him; the King took a long draught, but she took only a little. He soon fell into a deep sleep, and when she perceived that, she called a servant and took a fair white linen cloth and wrapped the King in it, and the servant was forced to carry him into a carriage that stood before the door, and she drove with him to her own little house. She laid him in her own little bed, and he slept one day and one night without awakening, and when he awoke he looked round and said, "Good God! where am I?" He called his attendants, but none of them were there. At length his wife came to his bedside and said, "My dear lord and King, you told me I might bring away with me from the palace that which was dearest and most precious in my eyes I have nothing more precious and dear than yourself, so I have brought you with me." Tears rose to the King's eyes and he said, "Dear wife, thou shalt be mine and I will be thine," and he took her back with him to the royal palace and was married again to her, and at the present time they are very likely still living.




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