ITALIANO

Il monte Simeli

ENGLISH

Simeli mountain


C'era una volta due fratelli, uno ricco e l'altro povero. Ma il ricco non dava niente al povero e questi doveva provvedere con fatica al proprio sostentamento, commerciando in granaglie; e spesso gli andava così male, che non aveva il pane per sua moglie e i suoi bambini. Un giorno, mentre stava attraversando il bosco con il suo carro, scorse da un lato una grande montagna brulla; e poiché‚ non l'aveva mai vista, si fermò e l'osservò meravigliato. Mentre se ne stava là fermo vide venire dodici omoni dall'aspetto selvaggio e, credendo che fossero briganti, spinse il suo carro nella macchia, salì su di un albero e stette a vedere cosa succedeva. I dodici uomini andarono davanti alla montagna e gridarono: -Monte Semsi, monte Semsi, apriti!-. Subito il monte brullo si aprì nel mezzo, i dodici entrarono e, quando furono dentro, il monte si richiuse. Ma dopo poco si riaprì e gli uomini uscirono, portando dei sacchi pesanti sulla schiena; e quando si trovarono tutti quanti di nuovo alla luce del giorno, dissero: -Monte Semsi, monte Semsi, chiuditi!-. Allora il monte si richiuse, senza che si potesse più vedere alcun passaggio, e i dodici se ne andarono. Quando furono scomparsi, il pover'uomo scese dall'albero, curioso di sapere quale segreto si celasse in quel monte. Andò là davanti e disse: -Monte Semsi, monte Semsi, apriti!- e il monte si aprì anche davanti a lui. Egli entrò, e il monte era tutta una caverna piena d'oro e d'argento, e dietro c'erano dei grandi mucchi di perle e sfavillanti pietre preziose, ammucchiate come il grano. Il povero non sapeva proprio cosa dovesse fare e se potesse prendere un po' di quei tesori. Infine si riempì le tasche d'oro, ma lasciò stare le perle e le pietre preziose. Quando uscì fuori, tornò a dire: -Monte Semsi, monte Semsi, chiuditi!-. Subito il monte si chiuse, ed egli se ne andò a casa con il suo carro. Ora egli non doveva più preoccuparsi: con quell'oro poteva procurare il pane e anche il vino per la moglie e i figli; viveva felice e contento, dando ai poveri e facendo del bene a tutti. Quando il denaro finì, andò dal fratello, si fece prestare uno staio e ne prese dell'altro; ma i grandi tesori non li toccò. Quando volle prenderne per la terza volta, tornò dal fratello a farsi prestare lo staio. Ma quello già da un pezzo invidiava la sua ricchezza e gli agi di cui godeva in casa, e non riusciva a capire di dove venisse quella fortuna, n‚ cosa facesse suo fratello con lo staio. Allora escogitò un'astuzia e spalmò il fondo dello staio di pece; e quando gli fu restituito, c'era rimasta attaccata una moneta d'oro. Subito andò dal fratello e gli domandò: -Che cosa hai misurato con lo staio?-. -Grano e orzo- rispose l'altro. Allora gli mostrò la moneta d'oro e lo minacciò di citarlo in giudizio se non diceva la verità. Perciò il fratello gli raccontò com'erano andate le cose. Il ricco fece subito attaccare un carro, andò nel bosco, e meditava di portar via ben altri tesori. Quando giunse davanti al monte, gridò: -Monte Semsi, monte Semsi, apriti!-. Il monte si aprì, ed egli entrò. Tutte le ricchezze erano davanti a lui, e per un bel po' egli non seppe cosa prender per primo; alla fine raccolse le gemme, quante poteva portarne, e si apprestò a uscire. Tornò indietro, ma siccome non aveva altro in mente che i tesori, aveva dimenticato il nome del monte e gridò: -Monte Simeli, monte Simeli, apriti!-. Ma, non essendo il nome giusto, il monte non si aprì e rimase chiuso. Allora s'impaurì, ma più ci pensava, più gli si confondevano le idee, e tutti i tesori non gli servivano a nulla. La sera il monte si aprì, entrarono i dodici briganti, e vedendolo, si misero a ridere e dissero: -Merlo, finalmente ti abbiamo pescato! Pensavi forse che non ci fossimo accorti che eri entrato due volte? Non riuscivamo a prenderti, ma una terza volta non uscirai di qui!-. Allora egli gridò: -Non ero io, era mio fratello!-. Ma ebbe un bel chieder grazia! Checché‚ dicesse, gli mozzarono la testa.
There were once two brothers, the one rich, the other poor. The rich one, however, gave nothing to the poor one, and he gained a scanty living by trading in corn, and often did so badly that he had no bread for his wife and children. Once when he was wheeling a barrow through the forest he saw, on one side of him, a great, bare, naked-looking mountain, and as he had never seen it before, he stood still and stared at it with amazement.
While he was thus standing he saw a twelve great, wild men coming towards him, and as he believed they were robbers he pushed his barrow into the thicket, climbed up a tree, and waited to see what would happen. The twelve men, however, went to the mountain and cried, "Semsi mountain, Semsi mountain, open," and immediately the barren mountain opened down the middle, and the twelve went into it, and as soon as they were within, it shut. After a short time, however, it opened again, and the men came forth carrying heavy sacks on their shoulders, and when they were all once more in the daylight they said, "Semsi mountain, Semsi mountain, shut thyself;" then the mountain closed together, and there was no longer any entrance to be seen to it, and the twelve went away.

When they were quite out of sight the poor man got down from the tree, and was curious to know what really was secretly hidden in the mountain. So he went up to it and said, "Semsi mountain, Semsi mountain, open," and the mountain opened to him also. The he went inside, and the whole mountain was a cavern full of silver and gold, and behind lay great piles of pearls and sparkling jewels, heaped up like corn. The poor man hardly knew what to do, and whether he might take any of these treasures for himself or not; but at last he filled his pockets with gold, but he left the pearls and precious stones where they were. When he came out again he also said, "Semsi mountain, Semsi mountain, shut thyself;" and the mountain closed itself, and he went home with his barrow.

And now he had no more cause for anxiety, but could buy bread for his wife and children with his gold, and wine into the bargain. He lived joyously and uprightly, gave help to the poor, and did good to every one. When, however, the money came to an end he went to his brother, borrowed a measure that held a bushel, and brought himself some more, but did not touch any of the most valuable things. When for the third time he wanted to fetch something, he again borrowed the measure of his brother. The rich man had, however, long been envious of his brother's possessions, and of the handsome way of living which he had set on foot, and could not understand from whence the riches came, and what his brother wanted with the measure. Then he thought of a cunning trick, and covered the bottom of the measure with pitch, and when he got the measure back a piece of money was sticking in it. He at once went to his brother and asked him, "What hast thou been measuring in the bushel measure?" - "Corn and barley," said the other. Then he showed him the piece of money, and threatened that if he did not tell the truth he would accuse him before a court of justice. The poor man then told him everything, just as it happened. The rich man, however, ordered his carriage to be made ready, and drove away, resolved to use the opportunity better than his brother had done, and to bring back with him quite different treasures.

When he came to the mountain he cried, "Semsi mountain, Semsi mountain, open." The mountain opened, and he went inside it. There lay the treasures all before him, and for a long time he did not know which to clutch at first. At length he loaded himself with as many precious stones as he could carry. He wished to carry his burden outside, but, as his heart and soul were entirely full of the treasures, he had forgotten the name of the mountain, and cried, "Simeli mountain, Simeli mountain, open." That, however, was not the right name, and the mountain never stirred, but remained shut. Then he was alarmed, but the longer he thought about it the more his thoughts confused themselves, and his treasures were no more of any use to him. In the evening the mountain opened, and the twelve robbers came in, and when they saw him they laughed, and cried out, "Bird, have we caught thee at last! Didst thou think we had never noticed that thou hadst been in here twice? We could not catch thee then; this third time thou shalt not get out again!" Then he cried, "It was not I, it was my brother," but let him beg for his life and say what he would, they cut his head off.




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