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ENGLISH

The flail from heaven

ITALIANO

La trebbia venuta dal cielo


A countryman was once going out to plough with a pair of oxen. When he got to the field, both the animals' horns began to grow, and went on growing, and when he wanted to go home they were so big that the oxen could not get through the gateway for them. By good luck a butcher came by just then, and he delivered them over to him, and made the bargain in this way, that he should take the butcher a measure of turnip-seed, and then the butcher was to count him out a Brabant thaler for every seed. I call that well sold! The peasant now went home, and carried the measure of turnip-seed to him on his back. On the way, however, he lost one seed out of the bag. The butcher paid him justly as agreed on, and if the peasant had not lost the seed, he would have had one thaler the more. In the meantime, when he went on his way back, the seed had grown into a tree which reached up to the sky. Then thought the peasant, "As thou hast the chance, thou must just see what the angels are doing up there above, and for once have them before thine eyes." So he climbed up, and saw that the angels above were threshing oats, and he looked on. While he was thus watching them, he observed that the tree on which he was standing, was beginning to totter; he peeped down, and saw that someone was just going to cut it down. "If I were to fall down from hence it would be a bad thing," thought he, and in his necessity he did not know how to save himself better than by taking the chaff of the oats which lay there in heaps, and twisting a rope of it. He likewise snatched a hoe and a flail which were lying about in heaven, and let himself down by the rope. But he came down on the earth exactly in the middle of a deep, deep hole. So it was a real piece of luck that he had brought the hoe, for he hoed himself a flight of steps with it, and mounted up, and took the flail with him as a token of his truth, so that no one could have any doubt of his story.
Una volta un contadino andò ad arare con una coppia di buoi. Quando giunse al campo, le corna delle due bestie incominciarono a crescere e crebbero tanto che quando volle tornare a casa erano così grandi che egli non pot‚ farle passare dal portone. Per fortuna, in quella passava di lì un macellaio, e il contadino gli lasciò i buoi, e si misero d'accordo in questo modo: il contadino doveva portare al macellaio una misura di ravizzone, e il macellaio doveva sborsare uno scudo per ogni seme. Questo si chiama un buon affare! Il contadino andò a casa, portando sulla schiena una misura di ravizzone; ma, per strada, perse un granello dal sacco. Il macellaio lo pagò secondo l'accordo: se il contadino non avesse perso quel seme, avrebbe avuto uno scudo in più. Nel frattempo, mentre tornava indietro, dal seme era cresciuto un albero che arrivava fino al cielo. Il contadino pensò: "Non perdere l'occasione di vedere che cosa fanno gli angeli lassù: per una volta li avrai sotto gli occhi!." Allora egli salì sull'albero e vide che gli angeli trebbiavano l'avena e si mise a guardare; mentre guardava si accorse che l'albero incominciava a vacillare; guardò giù e vide che uno stava per abbatterlo. "Se cadessi, sarebbe un bel guaio!" pensò e, trovandosi in difficoltà, non seppe far di meglio che prendere la pula dell'avena, che là era a mucchi, e farsene una corda. Prese inoltre una zappa e una trebbia, che erano in cielo, e si calò con la fune. Ma giù, a terra, finì in un buco profondo profondo, e fu una vera fortuna che avesse la zappa, poiché‚ così si scavò degli scalini per risalite, e portò con s‚ la trebbia come prova.