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Brēmenes pilsētas Muzikanti

Town Musicians of Bremen

Folktale recorded by the Brothers Grimm
Christa Baumgärtel
1990

Rīga /  Brēmenes pilsētas Muzikanti   Rīga /  Brēmenes pilsētas Muzikanti

Description

Bronze sculpture of four animals: a donkey stands on the bottom, with a dog on it, then a cat, and finally on the very top is a rooster.

Rīga - Brēmenes pilsētas Muzikanti Rīga - Brēmenes pilsētas Muzikanti Rīga - Brēmenes pilsētas Muzikanti Rīga - Brēmenes pilsētas Muzikanti

Inscription(s)

brēmenes pilsētas muzikanti
māksliniece: krista baumgertele, 1990
hanzas brīvpilsētas brēmenes dāvinājums.

die bremer stadtmusikanten
künstlerin: Christa Baumgärtel, 1990
geschenk der freien hansestadt bremen

Annotation

The Town Musicians of Bremen in German Die Bremer Stadtmusikanten - is a folktale recorded by the Brothers Grimm. Despite the title of the fairy tale the animals never actually arrive in Bremen.

In the story a donkey, a dog, a cat, and a rooster, all past their prime years in life and usefulness on their respective farms, were soon to be discarded or mistreated by their masters. One by one they leave their homes and set out together. They decide to go to Bremen, known for its freedom, to live without owners and become musicians there.

On the way to Bremen, they see a lighted cottage; they look inside and see four robbers enjoying their ill-gotten gains. Standing on each others backs, they decide to perform for the men in hope of gaining food. Their 'music' has an unanticipated effect; the men run for their lives, not knowing what the strange sound is. The animals take possession of the house, eat a good meal, and settle in for the evening.

Later that night, the robbers return and send one of their members in to investigate. It is dark and he sees the eyes of the cat shining in the darkness. He reaches over to light his candle, thinking he sees the coals of the fire. Things happen in quick succession; the cat swipes his face with her claws, the dog bites him on the leg, the donkey kicks him and the rooster crows and chases him out the door, screaming. He tells his companions that he was beset by a horrible witch who scratched him with her long fingers 'the Cat', an ogre with a knife 'the Dog', a giant who had hit him with his club 'the Donkey', and worst of all, the dragon who screamed in his voice from the rooftop 'the Rooster'. The robbers abandon the cottage to the strange creatures who have taken it, where the animals live happily for the rest of their days.

The sculpture is said to be an exact replica of the one in Bremen (click here), but that is not correct. The Riga statue has a window in which the animals are standing.

The Town Musicians of Bremen

A donkey, a dog, a cat, and a rooster, all past their prime years in life and usefulness on their respective farms, were soon to be discarded or mistreated by their masters. One by one they leave their homes and set out together. They decide to go to Bremen, known for its freedom, to live without owners and become musicians there. ("Something better than death we can find anywhere.")

On the way to Bremen, they see a lighted cottage; they look inside and see four robbers enjoying their ill-gotten gains. Standing on each other's backs, they decide to perform for the men in hope of gaining food. Their 'music' has an unanticipated effect; the men run for their lives, not knowing what the strange sound is. The animals take possession of the house, eat a good meal, and settle in for the evening.

Later that night, the robbers return and send one of their members in to investigate. He sees the Cat's eyes shining in the darkness and thinks he is seeing the coals of the fire. He reaches over to light his candle. Things happen in quick succession; the Cat scratches his face with her claws, the Dog bites him on the leg, the Donkey kicks him with his hooves, and the Rooster crows and chases him out the door, screaming. He tells his companions that he was beset by a horrible witch who scratched him with her long fingernails (the Cat), an ogre with a knife (the Dog), a giant who had hit him with his club (the Donkey), and worst of all, the judge who screamed in his voice from the rooftop (the Rooster). The robbers abandon the cottage to the strange creatures who have taken it, where the animals live happily for the rest of their days.

Sculptor

Sources & Information

Tags

Location (N 56°56'51" - E 24°6'34")

Item Code: lv018; Photograph: 10 July 2013
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