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What’s with this “Wren” thing?
The oldest extant version of the fable
are presenting here appeared in 1913 in the first volume of a two-volume anthology
Saxon folktales (Plattdeutsche
Volksmärchen “Low German Folktales”)
collected by Wilhelm Wisser (1843–1935). Read
back way back there wer a ren who made his nes in the divvy roof. He livet there
with his peopl. 1 day he and Mrs Ren gone out to find some meat to fetch their
childer leaving the yung birds oansome.
After a whyl the Dad ren come back hoam.
“Whats the big hulla bulla?” he askit. “Wer there some thing blipful?
You kids look lyk youve took the fearbelly.”
“O Dad!” they said, “a guvnor naminal jus come by. He snuck us with his
big eyes and his big teef and dint say Trubba not. We wer perwel scairt it
myt ben arga warga for us if we dint make the Bad Luck go a way syn.”
“I see,” he said, “what track did he take?”
“He gone and Norfing.”
“You kids wait here,” said the Dad ren, “Iwl teach him a lessing hewl
all ways keep in memberment. Dont worry childer. Iwl sharna pax and get a poal.”
So he gone after the guvnor naminal.
Persoon he ternt at a curse roads and noatist a lyn walking a long nor
the ren he wernt feart. He lanit ryt on the lyns back and yelt at him. “Who
are you as progammit to come to my nes and bring Trubba to my childer?”
The lyn dint say nothing to this datter jus kep moving on.
The ren cud feal his self getting humpyer by the minim and he yelt at
the lyn. “Whyd you come to my nes youve no good reason and you bes not come
back,” he said, “or Iwl pour the ounts of judgd men. I dont want to come hevvy,”
he liftit 1 of his littl legs in the air, “but youwl see your back aint as
hard as my leg.”
That tol the ren vackt his wayt and gone back to his nes.
“No Trubba childer,” he said, “Ive teachit him a lessing plus I dint call
no Plomercy. Thats the las wewl see of him.”