Cinderella #316 The Brother Who Was a Lamb
|Baa,baa, black sheep!|
Have you any wool?
Once upon a time, in France, there lived "three children, two brothers and a sister. They had lost their parents." Alone in the world, they stumbled forward seeking a fountain to quench their thirst and a place to rest their feet. Yet they found none, so had to trudge on and on. At length, a man passed by. Then they begged of him directions to the nearest water. He said,"There are three fountains over their. Do not drink from the first or the second,but drink from the third." So the three continued on, and soon they came to the first fountain. The younger brother was so thirsty that, although she tried, the sister could not stop him from drinking there. "And so he disappeared." The brother and sister walked on, and soon they came to the second fountain. Without warning, the brother rushed to it and drank deeply. At once he was transformed into a lamb. So the girl walked on, found the third fountain, and slaked her thirst. Suddenly, she "was turned into a beautiful princess who was well dressed." Now, even though she was princess, and her brother was a lamb, they still loved each other. So the princess took the lamb out to pasture each day, and in this way, they passed the time. "One day, the King's son went by, and found her so attractive he saw a lot of her. And the he asked her to marry him." But the princess refused him, saying that she could not leaver her brother, the lamb, behind. So the King's son said, "If you come with me, he will not be unhappy at home. He will have the courtyard and the room in which to play and run about in." So the princess married him, and she and her brother, the lamb, went to live in the castle. Alas, soon war came, and the King and his son went out to fight. Meanwhile, the Queen had taken a dislike to her daughter in law and her strange pet. She devised a plot to kill them. The next morning she bade the princess draw water from the well. Then she tricked the lamb into coming along, and, when the princess was at the well's edge, the cruel woman pushed her in! Well, she did not realize that her daughter in law was pregnant, but she was. So the girl fell down the well and "that is where her baby was born, on a fine, white bed which happened to be there." Meanwhile, the lamb ran away. The servants could not catch him. Soon the King and his son came home. Now the Queen faked being sick in bed, and implored her husband to slay a lamb for her, that she could eat its meat and grow well. He tried to catch the enchanted lamb but is started singing in a loud voice, "Therėse, Therėse, my friend! Here are your husband's servants, coming to kill me!' So she called back,"Jump and skip, my friend! Make them run hard!" And though the King, and then his son, and then the valet, and then the maids all tried to catch the lamb, none could. And they all kept hearing the princess's voice coming from the bottom of the well, calling to the lamb. But finally, the lamb perched on the edge of the well, When the King's son came nearer, he heard a voice calling out,"Papa!' It was the child who had been born at the bottom of the well." So the King's son pulled out his wife and child from the well, and "to end off, instead of burning the lamb, they burned the mother in law."
From: Massignon, G. (1968) Folktales of France (142)