ESPAÑOL

Los regalos de los gnomos

ENGLISH

The little folks' presents


Un sastre y un orfebre que vagaban juntos por esos mundos, oyeron un atardecer, cuando ya el sol se había ocultado tras los montes, los sones de una música lejana, cada vez más distintos. Era una melodía extraña, pero tan alegre que les hizo olvidar su cansancio y apretar el paso. La luna había salido ya cuando llegaron a una colina, en la que vieron una multitud de hombres y mujeres diminutos que, cogidos de las manos, bailaban en corro y saltaban animadamente, con muestras de gran alegría y alborozo; y, mientras bailaban, cantaban dulcemente; ésta era la música que habían oído nuestros caminantes. En el centro del círculo había un viejo, algo más alto que los demás, vestido con una casaca multicolor y de cuyo rostro colgaba una barba blanca que le cubría el pecho. Los dos amigos se detuvieron, asombrados, a contemplar la escena. El viejo, con una seña, los invitó a entrar en el círculo, y los enanillos abrieron el corro para dejarles paso. El orfebre, que era jorobado y, como todos los jorobados, de natural decidido, entró sin titubeos, mientras el sastre, un tanto tímido, permaneció indeciso unos momentos; al fin, contagiado de la general alegría, cobró ánimos y entró también.
Volvió a cerrarse el círculo, y los enanos reanudaron el canto y el baile, brincando alocadamente. De pronto, el viejo desenvainó un gran cuchillo que llevaba pendiente del cinto y se puso a afilarlo, y cuando le pareció bastante afilado, miró a los forasteros. Quedaron éstos helados de espanto; y, sin darles tiempo a pensar nada, el viejo agarró al orfebre y, con prodigiosa ligereza, le rapó el cabello y la barba; y lo mismo hizo luego con el sastre. Su miedo se disipó, sin embargo, cuando vieron que el viejo, terminada la operación, les daba unos golpecitos amistosos en el hombro, como felicitándolos por lo bien que se habían portado al dejarse afeitar sin protestas. Mostróles un montón de carbón que había a un lado y les indicó, con gestos, que se llenasen los bolsillos. Ambos obedecieron, aunque no veían de qué iba a servirles el carbón; luego siguieron su camino en busca de un cobijo para la noche. Cuando llegaron al valle, la campana de un convento cercano daba las doce. Inmediatamente cesaron los cantos, todo desapareció, y la colina quedó silenciosa y solitaria, iluminada por la luna.
Los dos vagabundos encontraron un albergue, y, sin desvestirse, se tumbaron a dormir en un lecho de paja. Estaban tan cansados, que ni siquiera atinaron a sacarse el carbón de los bolsillos. Un gran peso que les oprimía los miembros, los despertó más temprano que de costumbre. Metieron mano en los bolsillos, y no podían dar crédito a sus ojos al verlos llenos no de carbón, sino de oro puro; además, sus cabellos y barbas habían vuelto a crecer, más espesos que antes.
Y helos aquí convertidos en personajes ricos, sobre todo el orfebre, que, codicioso por naturaleza, se había llenado los bolsillos el doble que el sastre. Pero un avaro, cuanto más tiene, más ambiciona, y, así, el orfebre propuso a su compañero pasar el día allí, y al anochecer volver a la colina a pedir nuevas riquezas al viejo. El sastre se negó, diciendo:
- Yo tengo bastante y me doy por satisfecho. Ahora me convertiré en maestro del oficio, me casaré con mi prenda (así llamaba a su novia) y seré un hombre feliz -. Con todo, para no disgustar al orfebre, decidió quedarse allí aquel día.
Al atardecer, el orfebre se colgó del hombro un par de talegas para poder llevarse una buena carga, y reemprendió la subida a la colina. Como la víspera, encontró en la cumbre a los gnomos, entregados a sus cantos y danzas. Volvió a pelarlo el viejo y le hizo seña de coger carbón. Sin el menor titubeo, llenó las talegas y los bolsillos hasta reventar, regresó al lado de su amigo y se echó a dormir sin desnudarse. "Aunque el oro pese - se dijo -, aguantaré bien"; y se durmió, con la dulce esperanza de despertarse al día siguiente millonario. Al abrir los ojos se incorporó rápidamente para examinar sus bolsillos; pero, con enorme asombro, no extrajo de ellos más que negro carbón, por mucho que miró y remiró.
- Aún me queda el oro de la noche anterior - dijo; y, al sacarlo, vio con terror que también se había vuelto a transformar en carbón.
Golpeóse la frente con las ennegrecidas manos, dándose cuenta de que tenía completamente rasuradas la cabeza y la barba. Pero aún no terminaron aquí sus tribulaciones, pues bien pronto notó que a la joroba de la espalda se había sumado otra segunda, más voluminosa aún, en el pecho. Entonces reconoció que todo aquello era el castigo a su codicia, y prorrumpió en amargo llanto. Despertóse el buen sastre al ruido de sus lamentaciones y, prodigando al infeliz palabras de consuelo, acabó diciéndole:
- Fuiste mi compañero en mis tiempos de vida errante; te quedarás, pues, conmigo y compartirás mi riqueza.
Y cumplió su palabra. Pero el desdichado orfebre tuvo que arrastrar sus dos jorobas durante el resto de su vida y cubrirse la cabeza con una gorra.
A tailor and a goldsmith were travelling together, and one evening when the sun had sunk behind the mountains, they heard the sound of distant music, which became more and more distinct. It sounded strange, but so pleasant that they forgot all their weariness and stepped quickly onwards. The moon had already arisen when they reached a hill on which they saw a crowd of little men and women, who had taken each other's hands, and were whirling round in the dance with the greatest pleasure and delight.
They sang to it most charmingly, and that was the music which the travellers had heard. In the midst of them sat an old man who was rather taller than the rest. He wore a parti-coloured coat, and his iron-grey beard hung down over his breast. The two remained standing full of astonishment, and watched the dance. The old man made a sign that they should enter, and the little folks willingly opened their circle. The goldsmith, who had a hump, and like all hunchbacks was brave enough, stepped in; the tailor felt a little afraid at first, and held back, but when he saw how merrily all was going, he plucked up his courage, and followed. The circle closed again directly, and the little folks went on singing and dancing with the wildest leaps. The old man, however, took a large knife which hung to his girdle, whetted it, and when it was sufficiently sharpened, he looked round at the strangers. They were terrified, but they had not much time for reflection, for the old man seized the goldsmith and with the greatest speed, shaved the hair of his head clean off, and then the same thing happened to the tailor. But their fear left them when, after he had finished his work, the old man clapped them both on the shoulder in a friendly manner, as much as to say, they had behaved well to let all that be done to them willingly, and without any struggle. He pointed with his finger to a heap of coals which lay at one side, and signified to the travellers by his gestures that they were to fill their pockets with them. Both of them obeyed, although they did not know of what use the coals would be to them, and then they went on their way to seek a shelter for the night. When they had got into the valley, the clock of the neighbouring monastery struck twelve, and the song ceased. In a moment all had vanished, and the hill lay in solitude in the moonlight.

The two travellers found an inn, and covered themselves up on their straw-beds with their coats, but in their weariness forgot to take the coals out of them before doing so. A heavy weight on their limbs awakened them earlier than usual. They felt in the pockets, and could not believe their eyes when they saw that they were not filled with coals, but with pure gold; happily, too, the hair of their heads and beards was there again as thick as ever.

They had now become rich folks, but the goldsmith, who, in accordance with his greedy disposition, had filled his pockets better, was as rich again as the tailor. A greedy man, even if he has much, still wishes to have more, so the goldsmith proposed to the tailor that they should wait another day, and go out again in the evening in order to bring back still greater treasures from the old man on the hill. The tailor refused, and said, "I have enough and am content; now I shall be a master, and marry my dear object (for so he called his sweetheart), and I am a happy man." But he stayed another day to please him. In the evening the goldsmith hung a couple of bags over his shoulders that he might be able to stow away a great deal, and took the road to the hill. He found, as on the night before, the little folks at their singing and dancing, and the old man again shaved him clean, and signed to him to take some coal away with him. He was not slow about sticking as much into his bags as would go, went back quite delighted, and covered himself over with his coat. "Even if the gold does weigh heavily," said he, "I will gladly bear that," and at last he fell asleep with the sweet anticipation of waking in the morning an enormously rich man.

When he opened his eyes, he got up in haste to examine his pockets, but how amazed he was when he drew nothing out of them but black coals, and that howsoever often he put his hands in them. "The gold I got the night before is still there for me," thought he, and went and brought it out, but how shocked he was when he saw that it likewise had again turned into coal. He smote his forehead with his dusty black hand, and then he felt that his whole head was bald and smooth, as was also the place where his beard should have been. But his misfortunes were not yet over; he now remarked for the first time that in addition to the hump on his back, a second, just as large, had grown in front on his breast. Then he recognized the punishment of his greediness, and began to weep aloud. The good tailor, who was wakened by this, comforted the unhappy fellow as well as he could, and said, "Thou hast been my comrade in my travelling time; thou shalt stay with me and share in my wealth." He kept his word, but the poor goldsmith was obliged to carry the two humps as long as he lived, and to cover his bald head with a cap.




Compare dos idiomas:













Donations are welcomed & appreciated.


Thank you for your support.