Cinderella #353 Pernette (1558)
|Trees at dusk.|
Once upon a time, in Lyon, there lived a girl named Pernette. She was "the daughter of a merchant who had retired to a farm is desired by a neighboring squire." She certainly is not desired by her mother and older sister. They make her do all sorts of outlandish things, including picking up "with her tongue, grain by grain a bushel of scattered barley. Still, they can't seem to keep Pernette's spirits down. Against all odds, it is Pernette, rather than her favored older sister, who catches the eyes of a wealthy young man. Of course her father, "seeing that Pernette's proposed marriage displeases his wife, forces Pernette to wear an ass's skin in the hope that her lover will be disgusted with her." But he is not! He finds girls in hairy ass's skins, with their big floppy ears and gray fur, really hot! So he proposes to Pernette anyway. "The mother consents to the marriage if Pernette will perform her difficult task." This task is not specified in our version, dearest reader. We are only told that "the ants help her" perform it. And then "she is married".
From: Dundes, A. (1983) Cinderella: A Casebook. (p.74) New York Wildman Press
Notes: Anyone who has ever witnessed the spectacle of an ant column...leading to the honey jar on your counter, knows the power of ants. Who says an ANT cant' move a RUBBER TREE plant!