COMPLETE! Entered into SurLaLune Database in October 2018 with all known ATU Classifications.

Gold-Seeker of the Tendres Farm, The

BETWEEN Reshen and Nauders lies the Tendres Farm, and the old farmer, who is still living there, recounts the following tale:--

               “In my younger days a Venediger-Manndl used to arrive here every year towards the autumn, dressed in dreadfully ragged black clothes, just like a beggar, who always passed the night in my farm, and left on the following morning in the direction of the Green Lake, towards the Swiss frontier, and returned here again in the evening.

               “As I could never comprehend what the little beggar was doing here every year, and as in the same day he could neither reach huts nor farms, where he could get something by begging, I followed him one day, and found him on the borders of the Green Lake, close to a fountain, busily occupied in taking sand out of a wooden trough, into which the spring was running, and putting it into his sack.

               “I thought to myself, ‘Wait, my little fellow, I will lighten that work for you, and empty the trough before you return again; if the sand is of some value, I also can make some use of it, and if it were of no value, you certainly would never come here from so far to fetch it.’ In the following year, towards the autumn, I went to the spring, removed the stone slab from the trough, and found it full of gold sand, which was very heavy. I set off with it directly to Venice, to offer it for sale to a rich merchant, who was astonished at the sight of the sand; and said, ‘Oh! you rich man, I have not money enough to buy all that gold; but go down into that street, and you will find a large house shut up; knock at the door, and the richest man of Venice will let you in, and buy the treasure of you.’

               “As I approached the house, a distant voice shouted to me out of one of the windows, ‘Tendres Farmer, bring here your gold.’ I could not make out who could know me, far as I was from my own country, and, as I entered the palace, I was dazzled with the magnificence and riches which everywhere met my eyes. In a splendid chamber, on an armchair of pure gold, was sitting the little beggar, who had so often passed the night in my farm. He arose as I entered, and, shaking his finger menacingly at me, said, ‘You have not acted honestly in clearing out my trough; but, since you have so often sheltered and fed me, I will give you a day’s pay for the gold, which is my own.’ Then he gave me a gold coin for each day I had been on my journey, after which he held a glass before my eyes, in which I saw Tendres, my wife and children working in the field; in one word, everything as clearly as though I was myself standing in the farm. Then he turned the glass, and I saw the well on the Green Lake with the gold trough, and, after having passed his hand over the glass, he said, ‘Now go home, and you will never again find fountain or trough.’

               “And so it happened indeed, for when I reached home, and went down to the Green Lake, it was impossible for me to discover one single trace of the Gold Spring.”

Bibliographic Information

Tale Title: Gold-Seeker of the Tendres Farm, The
Tale Author/Editor: Günther, Comtesse Marie A. von
Book Title: Tales and Legends of the Tyrol
Book Author/Editor: Günther, Comtesse Marie A. von
Publisher: Chapman and Hall
Publication City: London
Year of Publication: 1874
Country of Origin: Austria
Classification: unclassified

Back to Top