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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
keberoxu German: Ein Schlosser hat ein' Gesell'n (14) RE: German: Ein Schlosser hat ein' Gesell'n 08 May 19


The preceding "Ballade,"      "Es kamen drei Schneider,"
has straightforward German in its lyrics,
but as my vocabulary is poor,
it is a stretch for me to make out what all of it means.

I gather this much:
our three youngsters have returned to their homeland
after sufficient travel to ...
leave them penniless.
They desperately want some wine, and can't pay for it.

The Ingelheim innkeeper, however,
has been around the block a few times, as we say in English,
and he knows only too well what to expect from these youths.

So he threatens to break their necks if they try to just
get away with drinking free wine;
and if they can't actually pay with money,
then whatever they demonstrate --

and what they demonstrate with is not
a Gesellenstück, but a Meisterstück,
meaning that none of the three is a Meister yet --

had better be worth his precious time and trouble.
What ensues is literally fantastic and unreal,
but this being a drinking-song,
a fantasy of a Meisterstück is within bounds.

To which, of course, the innkeeper of Ingelheim has the last word.
He allows as how he has been shown something
the likes of which he never saw before.
But, he goes on,
that will not exempt these cheeky young men
from being thanked -- more like, humbled -- afterwards.

A Fingerhut: even I know what that is, in English:
it's a thimble,
fittingly since these three are journeyman tailors,
and the innkeeper hands a thimble to the three of them,
and says,
There, boys, drink your fill of my wine with THIS!

The End.


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