Sunday, September 9, 2012

The legend about Kościół Mariacki's towers

While I was in Poland, I bought a staggering book of legends from Krakow. If you happen to have read my post 'Climax', just forget about it! I found out the 'true' legend behind Kościół Mariacki's towers, written by Józef Mączyński in his book Pamiątka z Krakowa (Souvenir from Krakow), published in 1845. I do not know exactly if he had just collected the legend or if he had made up the story from beginning to end - does it matter? I find it captivating.

There were to be two architect brothers; they planned that each one of them would build one of the two towers - the two towers were expected to be exactly the same and to stand for their brotherly love and consensus. But, as they started working on the plans, no agreement could be made; the eldest brother would not build according to his younger brother's plans, as the latter wanted a very high tower on foundations that were not solid at all. Thus, it was decided that each brother would build his tower according to his own plans. When the younger brother started to erect his own tower, he saw that his elder brother's tower would be higher than his. His pride could not bear that humiliation, and it made him think that the death of his elder brother would stop any further building, and thus his tower would come to be the tallest one - this is what happened when he stabbed his elder brother. No one could find the murderer, but the younger brother's conscience gave him away; when people gathered to see his tower after its building had been finished, he was standing by the window and shouted outloud that he was the murderer, showing the knife which he had used to kill his brother. Then, he used the very same knife to stab himself, and threw himself out of the window.

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