Cinderella #306 'E Tre Figlie D' 'O Re (The King's 3 Daughters) 1877
|A princess, by Maile, age 8.|
Note: Contains violence. Once upon a time,in Italy, there lived a king with three daughters. "One morning he tells them that he will want to hear the following day what each of them has dreamt." So the next day the oldest reports that she dreamed of marrying a prince. The middle daughter says that she dreamt of marrying a king. And the youngest says that she dreamed she had married an emperor. Well, this was a dream that the king did not like. What if his child should marry a man who outranked him? Without further thought the king called his serving man and commanded him to "take her out in [the] carriage to the wood, kill her there, and bring back her blood and one of her fingers." So the manservant puts the girl in the carriage and drives her to the wood —and there he releases her! But, to satisfy her father, he cuts off one of her fingers. Then he kills a wild ram, drains its blood, and takes the bloody proof back to the palace. The poor princess is terrified. She is alone, deep in the woods, and darkness is falling. That's when she sees a light in the distance, and sets off towards it. It is a cottage, in fact the home of an Uorco, which is Italian for ogre. But the home of an ogre seemed a safer bet than being alone in the forest, where the calls of wild animals sounded all around. So she walked up to the door and knocked. Mrs. Uorco lets her in, saying that her husband, who hates humans, will be back soon. Still, she lets the frightened girl come in and hide behind the door. Soon after, Mr. Uorco comes home. The first thing he says when he walks in is ,"What a smell of Christians!" To distract him from the smell, Mrs. Uorco tells a joyful lie, and announces that she has wonderful news. A baby ogre will be born to them! For nine months, the princess hides behind the door and Mrs. Uorco feeds her tidbits. When the right date comes, she wraps the princess in swaddling clothes and tells her husband that she is their brand new baby uorco! He believes her, and dotes on his new daughter. For some time they all live happily. Then one day, Mr. and Mrs. Uorco go out and leave the girl alone. That is when she "unlocks and enters [the] forbidden chamber", and sees for the first time the ogres' treasure house. When she has admired it all, she goes out on the balcony for the very first time. Now she can see that the emperor's palace is just across the way. The Royal Parrot is on its terrace. Seeing her, it squawks, "Bella figliola, bella figliola, I'uorco ti cresce, l'uroco ti 'ngrassa. Pe' ti mangia." So the girl runs back inside. When Mrs. Uorco returns home, she confides in her, and the lady ogress says that the next time the parrot talks to her, she must answer, "Papagallo, Papagallo, de 'ata coda, no bello ventaglio, de 'sta capo no belo bastone. Saró moglie al tuo padrone". Now, the parrot did not like this response, and went to tattle-tale to the emperor. The emperor declares that the girl who spoke those words to his parrot will be killed upon next sighting of her. Then he hides on the balcony and waits. Soon she appears, and the emperor, "seeing her extreme beauty" decides that marrying her would be a much better course of action than killing her! So a date is sent, and all the local kings invited. When the princess' own father catches sight of her, he "falls at her feet craving forgiveness". She embraces him, and all live happily together.
From: Cox, M.R. (1893/20110
Notes: I think the bird's song means something like,"Pretty daughter, pretty daughter, the ogress has raised you, and is caring for you. So she can eat you." And the girl's answer, perhaps means, "Oh, Mr. Parrot, the ogress may want to eat me, but my very own father wanted to kill me!" Or something like that.