Print: Kay Nielsen - The Image in the Water
‘He too saw the image in the water; but he looked up at once, and became aware of the lovely Lassie who sat there up in the tree.’
Fabulous Kay Nielsen mounted print, taken from the Norwegian fairy tale 'Lassie and her Godmother' from the book East of the Sun and West of the Moon, 1914.
The tale is about a girl sent away by her foster mother for opening three doors in the house forbidden to her. Out of one of these these doors had popped a star, out of the next, the moon and out of the last, the sun.
Before being sent away in disgrace, the girl had been given the choice by her foster mother to be either able to speak and be ugly or be mute and beautiful. She chose the latter before running away into the woods and climbing up a tree to sleep. A prince saw her reflection in the water and took her as his wife, ignoring his mother's plea that she may be a witch as she can't speak. When the prince and princess have a child, the foster mother takes it while the couple are sleeping, and smears the princess's mouth with blood, hence reinforcing the prince's mother's belief as it appears the princess has eaten the child and may indeed be a witch. The prince doesn't lose faith in his wife however, even when the same thing happens to two more children.
A dark tale, but thankfully all is righted in the end. The foster mother wanted to punish the princess three times, to get revenge on the fact that she had opened three doors forbidden to her. The princess's speech is restored and the children are returned to their parents.
Print size: 6 x 8".
Mounted to fit frame: 10 x 12".