Maria Tolrá 1900
What do they have to talk about? I was asking myself this immediately when I saw Maria's sampler. The donkey and the dog - they are so beautiful to look at.
My French friend Brigitte knows the fables of Jean de La Fontaine (1621-1695), one of the greatest classic authors in her country. His fables are still known to almost every French schoolchild today. At WIKIPEDIA, I did some research.
"The Donkey and the Dog (French L'Âne et le Chien) is the 17th fable from the eighth book of the Fables Choisies collection , Mises En Vers by Jean de La Fontaine.
The fable begins and ends with the tenet that one should help one another. It tells of a dog and a donkey who served the same master. On a long journey, all three stopped because the gentleman was tired and lay down on a meadow to sleep. Since the animals were both hungry, the dog asked the donkey carrying the supplies on his back to bend down so that it could get something to eat from the basket. But the donkey carefreely began to eat grass, then it advised the dog to be patient until the master woke up and gave him its food. When a wolf appeared shortly afterwards, the donkey asked the dog to protect him from the wolf. But the dog remained motionless in its place and advised the donkey to flee or to smash the wolf's jaw with its hooves. While the dog was advising the donkey, it fell prey to the wolf.
This fable shows the real guilt of the donkey, which at the legitimate request of the dog breaks the law of mutual aid. Using the example of the hungry dog, La Fontaine signals that the selfish donkey deserves its fate."
Little Maria must have been very touched by this fable and chose this motif, which the Sajou company published around 1870/1880.
I am very grateful to Lorraine Mootz for allowing me to show her original needlework pattern and also her French sampler here.
chart: € 16.-
Crosses: 250 x 207
Size: 35.5 x 29 cm