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Page:The Pentamerone, or The Story of Stories.djvu/433

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NOTES.

 
 

It was my intention to have appended to this Collection of Stories a body of illustrative Notes, including Dr. Grimm's highly interesting analysis of some of the most curious ones; but the extent to which the volume has already gone precludes my indulging this wish. I shall therefore subjoin only a few remarks upon the passages in the work to which I have called attention: for these I am chiefly indebted to Dr. Liebrecht's Notes.

 

 

Fairy Mythology of the Pentamerone.—The mythological characters introduced in these stories, Dr. Grimm observes, may be divided into two classes; "the gentle and kind ones are always feminine, the inimical and bad ones are common to both sexes: the former are called Fate, the latter Uorco and Uorca." We also meet with the masculine Fato, a fay, who is however not necessarily a beneficent being, but simply a person fatato (fem. fatata)—chi ha la fatazione, i. e. under a spell, or is gifted with supernatural powers. On the nature of the Uorco and Uorca much might be said; I can only here refer to Mr. Keightley's remarks in his Tales and Popular Fictions, p. 223, and his Fairy Mythology, ii. 237. The Orco (from the Latin Orcus,) resembles the Persian Ghool, and corresponds to the French Ogre; the nearest approach to him in Germany is the Wilde Man. Mr. Liebrecht has translated the Uorca by the German Hexe: our English Witch is however a very different creature; the Ogress is, like her husband, a cannibal, which is a sufficient distinction.