Ferdinand the faithful


Ferdinand tro og Ferdinand utro

Once on a time lived a man and a woman who so long as they were rich had no children, but when they were poor they had a little boy. They could, however, find no godfather for him, so the man said he would just go to another place to see if he could get one there. As he went, a poor man met him, who asked him where he was going. He said he was going to see if he could get a godfather, that he was poor, so no one would stand as godfather for him. "Oh," said the poor man, "you are poor, and I am poor; I will be godfather for you, but I am so ill off I can give the child nothing. Go home and tell the nurse that she is to come to the church with the child."
When they all got to the church together, the beggar was already there, and he gave the child the name of Ferdinand the Faithful.

When he was going out of the church, the beggar said, "Now go home, I can give you nothing, and you likewise ought to give me nothing." But he gave a key to the nurse, and told her when she got home she was to give it to the father, who was to take care of it until the child was fourteen years old, and then he was to go on the heath where there was a castle which the key would fit, and that all which was therein should belong to him. Now when the child was seven years old and had grown very big, he once went to play with some other boys, and each of them boasted that he had got more from his godfather than the other; but the child could say nothing, and was vexed, and went home and said to his father, "Did I get nothing at all, then, from my godfather?" - "Oh, yes," said the father, "thou hadst a key if there is a castle standing on the heath, just go to it and open it." Then the boy went thither, but no castle was to be seen, or heard of.

After seven years more, when he was fourteen years old, he again went thither, and there stood the castle. When he had opened it, there was nothing within but a horse, a white one. Then the boy was so full of joy because he had a horse, that he mounted on it and galloped back to his father. "Now I have a white horse, and I will travel," said he. So he set out, and as he was on his way, a pen was lying on the road. At first he thought he would pick it up, but then again he thought to himself, "Thou shouldst leave it lying there; thou wilt easily find a pen where thou art going, if thou hast need of one." As he was thus riding away, a voice called after him, "Ferdinand the Faithful, take it with thee." He looked around, but saw no one, then he went back again and picked it up. When he had ridden a little way farther, he passed by a lake, and a fish was lying on the bank, gasping and panting for breath, so he said, "Wait, my dear fish, I will help thee get into the water," and he took hold of it by the tail, and threw it into the lake. Then the fish put its head out of the water and said, "As thou hast helped me out of the mud I will give thee a flute; when thou art in any need, play on it, and then I will help thee, and if ever thou lettest anything fall in the water, just play and I will reach it out to thee." Then he rode away, and there came to him a man who asked him where he was going. "Oh, to the next place." Then what his name was? "Ferdinand the Faithful." - "So! then we have got almost the same name, I am called Ferdinand the Unfaithful." And they both set out to the inn in the nearest place.

Now it was unfortunate that Ferdinand the Unfaithful knew everything that the other had ever thought and everything he was about to do; he knew it by means of all kinds of wicked arts. There was, however, in the inn an honest girl, who had a bright face and behaved very prettily. She fell in love with Ferdinand the Faithful because he was a handsome man, and she asked him whither he was going. "Oh, I am just travelling round about," said he. Then she said he ought to stay there, for the King of that country wanted an attendant or an outrider, and he ought to enter his service. He answered he could not very well go to any one like that and offer himself. Then said the maiden, "Oh, but I will soon do that for you." And so she went straight to the King, and told him that she knew of an excellent servant for him. He was well pleased with that, and had Ferdinand the Faithful brought to him, and wanted to make him his servant. He, however, liked better to be an outrider, for where his horse was, there he also wanted to be, so the King made him an outrider. When Ferdinand the Unfaithful learnt that, he said to the girl, "What! Dost thou help him and not me?" - "Oh," said the girl, "I will help thee too." She thought, "I must keep friends with that man, for he is not to be trusted." She went to the King, and offered him as a servant, and the King was willing.

Now when the King met his lords in the morning, he always lamented and said, "Oh, if I had but my love with me." Ferdinand the Unfaithful was, however, always hostile to Ferdinand the Faithful. So once, when the King was complaining thus, he said, "You have the outrider, send him away to get her, and if he does not do it, his head must be struck off." Then the King sent for Ferdinand the Faithful, and told him that there was, in this place or in that place, a girl he loved, and that he was to bring her to him, and if he did not do it he should die.

Ferdinand the Faithful went into the stable to his white horse, and complained and lamented, "Oh, what an unhappy man I am!" Then someone behind him cried, "Ferdinand the Faithful, why weepest thou?" He looked round but saw no one, and went on lamenting; "Oh, my dear little white horse, now must I leave thee; now must I die." Then some one cried once more, "Ferdinand the Faithful, why weepest thou?" Then for the first time he was aware that it was his little white horse who was putting that question. "Dost thou speak, my little white horse; canst thou do that?" And again, he said, "I am to go to this place and to that, and am to bring the bride; canst thou tell me how I am to set about it?" Then answered the little white horse, "Go thou to the King, and say if he will give thou what thou must have, thou wilt get her for him. If he will give thee a ship full of meat, and a ship full of bread, it will succeed. Great giants dwell on the lake, and if thou takest no meat with thee for them, they will tear thee to pieces, and there are the large birds which would pick the eyes out of thy head if thou hadst no bread for them." Then the King made all the butchers in the land kill, and all the bakers bake, that the ships might be filled. When they were full, the little white horse said to Ferdinand the Faithful, "Now mount me, and go with me into the ship, and then when the giants come, say,

"Peace, peace, my dear little giants,
I have had thought of ye,
Something I have brought for ye;"
and when the birds come, thou shalt again say,

"Peace, peace, my dear little birds,
I have had thought of ye,
Something I have brought for ye;"
then they will do nothing to thee, and when thou comest to the castle, the giants will help thee. Then go up to the castle, and take a couple of giants with thee. There the princess lies sleeping; thou must, however, not awaken her, but the giants must lift her up, and carry her in her bed to the ship." And now everything took place as the little white horse had said, and Ferdinand the Faithful gave the giants and the birds what he had brought with him for them, and that made the giants willing, and they carried the princess in her bed to the King. And when she came to the King, she said she could not live, she must have her writings, they had been left in her castle. Then by the instigation of Ferdinand the Unfaithful, Ferdinand the Faithful was called, and the King told him he must fetch the writings from the castle, or he should die. Then he went once more into the stable, and bemoaned himself and said, "Oh, my dear little white horse, now I am to go away again, how am I to do it?" Then the little white horse said he was just to load the ships full again. So it happened again as it had happened before, and the giants and the birds were satisfied, and made gentle by the meat. When they came to the castle, the white horse told Ferdinand the Faithful that he must go in, and that on the table in the princess's bed-room lay the writings. And Ferdinand the Faithful went in, and fetched them. When they were on the lake, he let his pen fall into the water; then said the white horse, "Now I cannot help thee at all." But he remembered his flute, and began to play on it, and the fish came with the pen in its mouth, and gave it to him. So he took the writings to the castle, where the wedding was celebrated.
The Queen, however, did not love the King because he had no nose, but she would have much liked to love Ferdinand the Faithful. Once, therefore, when all the lords of the court were together, the Queen said she could do feats of magic, that she could cut off any one's head and put it on again, and that one of them ought just to try it. But none of them would be the first, so Ferdinand the Faithful, again at the instigation of Ferdinand the Unfaithful, undertook it and she hewed off his head, and put it on again for him, and it healed together directly, so that it looked as if he had a red thread round his throat. Then the King said to her, "My child, and where hast thou learnt that?" - "Yes," she said, "I understand the art; shall I just try it on thee also?" - "Oh, yes," said he. But she cut off his head, and did not put it on again; but pretended that she could not get it on, and that it would not keep fixed. Then the King was buried, but she married Ferdinand the Faithful.

He, however, always rode on his white horse, and once when he was seated on it, it told him that he was to go on to the heath which he knew, and gallop three times round it. And when he had done that, the white horse stood up on its hind legs, and was changed into a King's son.
Der var engang en mand og en kone. Så længe de var rige, havde de ingen børn, men da de var blevet fattige fik de en lille dreng. De kunne ikke hitte på, hvem der skulle stå fadder til ham, og manden bestemte da, at han ville gå ud og se at finde en.

På vejen mødte han en fattig mand, der spurgte, hvor han skulle hen. Han fortalte nu, at han var ude for at lede efter en, der ville stå fadder til hans søn, men han var så fattig, at han ikke kunne få nogen til det. "Det passer godt," sagde manden, "jeg er også fattig. Jeg vil gerne stå fadder til barnet, men nogen gave kan jeg ikke give. Gå hjem og sig til jordemoderen, at hun skal komme hen i kirken med barnet." Da de kom derhen, var tiggeren der allerede, og barnet blev døbt og fik navnet Ferdinand tro.

Da de kom ud, sagde tiggeren: "Nu går jeg hjem. Jeg kan ikke give jer noget, og I skal heller ikke give mig noget." Derpå gav han jordemoderen en nøgle og sagde, at hun skulle give faderen den, når hun kom hjem. Han skulle gemme den, til drengen var fjorten år, så skulle han gå ud på heden, og derude lå et slot, som nøglen kunne lukke op til. Det, han fandt der, måtte han beholde.

Da drengen var blevet en stor fyr på syv år, legede han en dag med nogle andre drenge, og de fortalte da om alt, hvad de havde fået af deres gudfædre. Drengen gik grædende hjem. "Har jeg slet ikke fået noget af min gudfar?" spurgte han. "Jo," svarede faderen, "du har fået en nøgle, der kan lukke op til et slot, som ligger ude på heden." Han gik derud, men der var ikke noget slot at se. Syv år efter, da han var blevet fjorten år gammel, gik han igen derud, og da stod slottet der. Han gik derind og fandt en hest, der stod i stalden, og blev meget glad og red straks hjem til sin far. "Nu har jeg en hest, nu vil jeg også rejse," sagde han. Han red nu hjemmefra, og da han havde redet et lille stykke, så han, at der lå en fjer på jorden. Han ville bukke sig ned og tage den op, men lod den alligevel ligge og tænkte: "Jeg kan vel nok få fat i en pen, når jeg skal bruge en." Men da hørte han en, der råbte: "Tag mig med, Ferdinand tro." Han vendte sig om, men da han ikke kunne opdage nogen, tog han fjeren op. Da han igen havde redet nogen tid, kom han til en bæk. På bredden lå en fisk og vred sig og snappede efter vejret. "Nu skal jeg hjælpe dig," sagde han, tog den i halen og kastede den i vandet. Fisken stak hovedet op af vandet og sagde: "Fordi du har frelst mig, vil jeg give dig denne fløjte. Når du er i nød, behøver du blot at blæse i den, så kommer jeg og hjælper dig, og hvis du engang har tabt noget i vandet, skal jeg tage det op til dig." Han red nu videre og mødte lidt efter en mand, der spurgte, hvor han skulle hen. "Lige ud af landevejen," svarede han. Derpå spurgte manden, hvad han hed, og da han havde fået det at vide, sagde han: "Så hedder vi jo omtrent det samme. Jeg hedder Ferdinand utro." De fulgtes så ad til den nærmeste kro.

Ferdinand utro kunne imidlertid en hel masse trolddomskunster og vidste derfor altid, hvad Ferdinand tro tænkte på og havde i sinde at gøre. I kroen var der en smuk, ung pige med et sødt, venligt ansigt. Hun blev forelsket i Ferdinand tro, for han var et pænt, ungt menneske, og spurgte, hvor han skulle hen. Han svarede, at han ville se sig lidt om i verden. Pigen sagde da, at han skulle meget hellere blive der, han kunne nok få tjeneste hos kongen som tjener eller forridder. Ferdinand tro havde ikke videre lyst til at gå op og bede om det, men pigen tilbød da at gøre det for ham. Hun gik straks op til kongen og sagde, at hun havde fundet en pæn tjener til ham. Han var meget velfornøjet dermed, og Ferdinand tro kom derop. Han ville helst være forrider, for så kunne han beholde sin hest, og det blev han da også. Da Ferdinand utro hørte det, sagde han til pigen: "Hør, kan du ikke også hjælpe mig?" Pigen tænkte, at det var ikke værd at have ham til uven, og gik derfor til kongen, som også tog Ferdinand utro i sin tjeneste.

Når Ferdinand utro om morgenen klædte kongen på, sukkede denne bestandig: "Bare min kæreste var her." Ferdinand utro, som havde et horn i siden på Ferdinand tro, sagde da til ham: "Deres Majestæt har jo en forrider. Send ham af sted efter hende, og lad ham miste sit hovede, hvis han ikke bringer hende." Kongen lod da Ferdinand tro kalde til sig og befalede ham at hente hans kæreste, og gjorde han det ikke, skulle han dø.

Ferdinand tro gik ned i stalden til sin hest og græd. "Hvor er jeg dog et ulykkeligt menneske," hulkede han. "Hvad græder du for?" råbte en stemme bagved ham. Han så sig om, men kunne ikke opdage nogen, og blev ved at jamre: "Nu må jeg forlade dig, min lille hest, nu skal jeg dø." - "Hvad græder du for?" sagde stemmen igen, og han opdagede nu, at det var hans hest, der talte. "Kan du snakke, lille hest?" sagde han forbavset. "Jeg skal hen og hente kongens kæreste, og jeg kan ikke begribe, hvordan jeg skal bære mig ad." - "Gå hen til kongen og sig, at han skal give dig, hvad du forlanger," sagde hesten, "og bed så om et skib fuldt af kød og et fuldt af brød, så skal det nok lykkes for dig. Ude på vandet vil du nemlig træffe nogle kæmper, som sønderriver dig, hvis du ikke har kød med til dem, og nogle store fugle, som hakker øjnene ud på dig, hvis de ikke får brød."

Kongen lod nu en mængde kvæg slagte og bagte en bunke brød, og det blev bragt ombord på skibene. "Sejl nu bare af sted," sagde hesten, "og når kæmperne kommer, skal du blot sige:

Tys, tys, mine kæmper små,
lækkert kød skal
af mig I få.

Til fuglene siger du:

Tys, tys, mine fugle små,
lækkert brød skal
af mig I få,

så gør de dig ikke noget. Du skal få et par af kæmperne med op på slottet, hvor prinsessen ligger og sover, og de skal bære hende ombord med sengen og det hele." Det gik altsammen, som hesten havde sagt. Ferdinand gav kæmperne og fuglene kødet og brødet og kæmperne hjalp ham med at bære prinsessen ned på skibet. Da hun kom til kongen sagde hun, at hun kunne ikke leve, hvis hun ikke fik sine breve og andre papirer, der lå hjemme på slottet. Ferdinand utro fik det igen ordnet sådan, at Ferdinand tro blev sendt af sted og skulle bøde med sit liv, hvis han ikke fik fat i brevene. Han gik grædende ned i stalden og sagde: "Nu skal jeg af sted igen, lille hest, hvad skal jeg nu gøre?" Hesten sagde da, at han skulle lade skibene som forrige gang. Det gik ligesom sidst, kæmperne og fuglene blev stillet tilfreds med kødet og brødet. Da de kom til slottet sagde hesten, at han skulle gå ind i prinsessens sovekammer, der lå brevene på bordet. Ferdinand tro gik ind og hentede dem og kom ombord igen, men på vejen hjem tabte han sin gåsepen i vandet. "Den kan jeg ikke skaffe dig igen," sagde hesten, men Ferdinand kom da i tanker om fløjten, og straks da han havde blæst i den, kom fisken svømmende med pennen i munden. Han bragte nu papirerne til prinsessen, og brylluppet blev fejret.

Dronningen kunne imidlertid ikke rigtig lide kongen, fordi han ingen næse havde, derimod syntes hun svært godt om Ferdinand tro. Engang, da hele hoffet var samlet, sagde dronningen, at hun kunne gøre et kunststykke. Hun kunne hugge hovedet af et menneske og sætte det på igen. Der var ingen, der havde lyst til at prøve, men Ferdinand utro fik det til sidst lavet sådan, at Ferdinand tro måtte til det. Dronningen huggede så hovedet af ham, og fik det straks til at vokse fast igen, der var kun en rød stribe rundt om halsen. "Hvor har du lært den kunst?" spurgte kongen. "Den kan jeg nu engang," svarede hun, "skal jeg også prøve med dig?" Han sagde ja, og hun huggede nu hovedet af ham, men lod, som om hun ikke kunne få det til at sidde fast igen. Kongen blev så begravet og dronningen giftede sig med Ferdinand tro.

Ferdinand red stadig på sin hest, og en dag sagde den til ham, at han skulle ride ud på heden og der ride tre gange i en rundkreds. Da han havde gjort det, rejste hesten sig på bagbenene og blev forvandlet til en kongesøn.

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