Basque Tales 6

Basque tales

Here are various tales Basque : Etsai student, The reaper, Bardos

Basque tales

Etsai pupil

Inhabitant of the Leiza cave of Sara, Etsai (devil), held a school there where he taught in a short time the sciences, the arts and the letters. Mari's two sons, Atarrabi and Atxular, and other comrades studied here. The payment he demanded for his office was as follows: at the end of his studies he would keep in his service and forever one of his students chosen by lot.

Once, however, he promised not to exact such a tribute if they could tell what material one of his vessels was made of. Time passed and the school children could not penetrate this secret. One of them went to Akelarre (goat's moor) or wizard's field. He climbed a tree. In this place many witches and wizards met together with their leader Etsai.

After dancing a little, Etsai began to converse with a witch and said to her:

“Tomorrow students will come and tell me what material my vase is from”.
“What material is this vase made of? asked the witch.
"I can't tell you."
"Won't you tell me? Don't you trust me? »
“But yes: my vase is made up of fingernails cut on Friday and Sunday”.

The student who had heard this dialogue, recited to Etsai the lesson learned in the Akelarre.
Following which the students of his promotion were freed.

The reaper

One day Jesus and Saint Peter were walking in the harvest.
– “The beautiful wheat”, says Pierre
– “What are you saying there?, continues the master of the field, the harvest is more than mediocre”.

Then Jesus said to Saint Peter:
"Their greed will be punished, and they will have only one bushel of wheat for each cartload of sheaves."

Further on they find a poor woman laboriously sawing thin wheat. Peter said to him:
– “My good lady, you will not have a famous harvest”.
– “May God preserve her for me and I will be happy”, replies the woman.

Jesus said to Saint Peter:
“His submission will have its reward. Each sheaf will give him a bushel of wheat.” As Jesus continued on his way, Peter came and said to the woman:
– “Make your sheaves as small as you can”.


As they walked on earth, the Lord Jesus and Saint Peter came to the edge of the land Basque. They were tired, and they both sat down on the side of the road.

After breathing a little, glancing around, Saint Peter said to Jesus:
- "What are we going to do with this corner, my lord?" »
- " Bah ! hey, neither Basque nor Gascon… we're going to make Bardos out of it. »
And, having both risen, they did…. Bardos.