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The Pied Piper of Hamelin is the name given to the figure who appears in the folk tale The Pied Piper. It tells the story of a rat infestation in the town and how the poned led all children away with his magic music after the adults refused to pay him for ridding their homes of rats. This article will explore the history, conspiracy theories and more about this famous folktale story by Robert Browning and Brothers Grimm.
The pied piper story is one the oldest and most well-known folktales in Europe. Robert Browning, the famous English poet wrote a poem based on the legend of the Pied Piper called “The Pied Piper of Hamelin” where he rewrote the ending to have a happy conclusion instead of leaving it open as other authors did before him. But even though his version became more popular over time, people still remembered the old tale about children disappearing from town after being seduced by music played by an unknown person who was dressed all in red. The Brothers Grimm retold the same tale later but they decided not to include any clues as to whether or not there really had been some kind of rat infestation that could explain why
In 1283, while Hamelin was suffering from a rat infestation, a pipe-player in “pied” (colored) clothing appeared and claimed to be a rat catcher. He offered the mayor a solution to their rat problem in exchange for money. In turn, the mayor agreed to pay him for the rats’ removal. (according to some versions of the story, the promised sum was 1,000 guilders). The piper played his pipe to entice the rats into the Weser River, where they all perished.
Despite the piper’s success, the mayor reneged on his word and refused to pay him the entire amount. (reputedly reduced to a sum of 50 guilders) even going so far as to blame the piper for bringing the rats himself in an extortion attempt. The piper, enraged, stormed out of town and vowed to return later to exact his own brand of justice. On Saint John and Paul’s day, The piper returned, dressed in green like a hunter and playing his pipe, while the grownups were at church. He thus drew the children of the community to him.A hundred and thirty children followed him out of town, where they all were killed.
According to some accounts, at most three children remained behind: one was lame and could not follow fast enough, the second was blind and could not see where he was going, and the last was deaf and therefore unable to hear the music. These three informed the villagers of what had happened when they came out from church.
Various versions state that the Pied Piper took his young followers to the peak of Koppelberg Hill, where they found a lovely country or Koppenberg Mountain, Transylvania, or that he forced them to wade into the Weser as he had with the rats and all perished.After the ransom money was paid, or after several times the initial amount of gold was handed over, the Piper allegedly returned the youngsters.
The Hamelin street named Bungelosenstrasse (“street without drums”) or known as the drumless street, is believed to be the last place that the children were seen. Ever since, music or dancing is not allowed on this street.
The Hamelin story appears to have been first documented on a stained-glass window that was installed in the Church of Hamelin around 1300.The window was mentioned in a number of chronicles from the 14th to 17th centuries. It was blasted down in 1660.. Based on the surviving descriptions, a modern reconstruction of the window has been created by historian Hans Dobbertin. It features the colorful figure of the Pied Piper and several figures of children dressed in white.
The window is often thought to have been erected in memory of a devastating historical event that took place in the town’s history; Hamelin town records also appear to begin with this moment.The earliest written record is from the town chronicles in an entry from 1384 which reportedly states: “It is 100 years since our children left”
The Conspiracy Theories about the Folktale Story.
In the Brothers Grimm version of the tale (1812), the Pied Piper leads 130 children from Hamelin away after an epidemic had struck the town (perhaps leprous or bubonic plague) claiming that he would make the sound with his flute to heal them; however, on leading them out they drown in the Weser river when he does not allow for their return (“and were never heard of more”). As punishment for this crime, God allowed him to go unpunished: “But because [he] did not let the poor children come back again, but went swimming across with them, the Lord ordered that he should become blind; and the children were never seen more.”
There are many theories about the story of the Pied Piper. The most popular theory is that Hamelin was suffering from a rat infestation so severe it threatened the town’s survival. As there appears to be no contemporary accounts or evidence of this, few historians support this idea today (contemporary accounts did mention the presence of rats in Europe at the time). Other legends suggested by folklorists involve pagan rituals, such as storing grain until springtime when food would have been scarce due to winter ice on the river preventing shipping traffic upriver towards Hamelin—making for an easy meal. Another legend suggests that Hamelin may have had some sort of contract to relocate the rats.
Further, the Pied Piper is a German legend that has been the subject of many theories and speculations.
One theory by brothers Wilhelm and Jacob Grimm was based on the rat-catcher stories from France where in some versions the piper lures the children away with his music while another version says he uses magical tricks to lure them into an underground cave or cellar.
The most prominent character in the story though is the mayor who refuses to pay for pest control services when it comes time to rid Hamelin of its unwanted vermin population so the townspeople are forced to do this themselves.
In Robert Browning’s poem ‘Pippa Passes’ (1841), set in medieval Germany, there appears the Pied Piper of the story who confronts the main character, the ‘peasant’s child’, Pip. The piper offers her money to follow him but she refuses and is not seen again by the people of Hamelin after that day.
One theory suggests that the legend takes place during a plague epidemic in Hamelin between 1348–1350 which killed about two-thirds of its population as mentioned above. In this version it was because many children had died from the illness that the parents could no longer pay their taxes due to lack of money or labor force so they were forced out for defaulting on tax payments.. It has been suggested though, that if all these children would have died then there wouldn’t be enough left alive in
The theory of emigration is based on the hypothesis that, by the 13th century, overpopulation in the region had rendered the eldest son owner of all of it (majorat), leaving the remainder as serfs.It’s also been stated that one of the reasons why the children’s exodus was never recorded is because they were sold to a Baltic region recruiter from Eastern Europe, which was not uncommon at the time. In her essay “Pied Piper Reexamined,” Sheila Harty argues that the region’s surnames are comparable to those from Hamelin, and that peddling off fraudulent children, orphans, or other youngsters the community could not support is more likely. She adds that this may explain why no records of the event exist in town chronicles.
In his book The Pied Piper: A Handbook, Wolfgang Mieder states that historical documents exist showing that people from the area including Hamelin did help settle parts of Transylvania. Transylvania had been ravaged by lengthy Mongol invasions of Central Europe led by Genghis Khan’s two grandsons, which began around the time of the legend’s first appearance and continued until about 1315.
Other Conspiracy Theories
The youngsters’s vanishing has been linked to mass psychogenic illness, as was the case with dancing mania. In 1237, a large number of children from Erfurt traveled to Arnstadt (about 20 kilometers [12 miles] away), leaping and dancing all the way, in marked correspondence with the legend of the Pied Piper of Hamelin, which had emerged around that time.
Some have claimed that the kids fled Hamelin to take part in a pilgrimage, a military campaign, or even a new Children’s Crusade (which is said to have taken place in 1212), but they never returned home. The unidentified Piper is seen as their leader or a recruiting agent in these hypotheses. To avoid the church’s or king’s anger, the inhabitants made up this tale (instead of recording the facts).
William Manchester’s A World Lit Only by Fire places the events in 1484, 100 years after the written mention in the town chronicles that “It is 100 years since our children left”, and further proposes that the Pied Piper was a psychopathic paedophile.
History of the Flute
The flute is the first known musical instrument and the only one known that was invented purely for the sake of playing music. The oldest flute ever found dates to around 35,000 years ago.
Ancient Egyptians credited the goddess Isis with the invention of the flute, portraying her blowing into a giant tambourine-like drum at celebrations honoring Osiris, god of death and afterlife. Ancient Persians depicted their “heavenly king” Haoma as being fond of music together with dancing girls on top of lutes before him during feasts. Plato associated the originator (or inventor) Pan with both rhythmic communication by means of pipes or drums as well as
The flute is the cousin of the modern recorder and the distant ancestor of most Western woodwind instruments.
Flutes are the first known musical instruments and were the only ones to be played for thousands of years.
The flute was used as both a folk instrument by the ancient Greeks and Romans, as well as one that could play rhapsodies on the frontlines during battle (see Peltast). The early seventeenth century saw flutes begin to appear in court and theatre music. A set of playing cards dating from 1577 contains some non-standard card games which may require an additional flute player: the King standing upon the tower instructs other players not to take ‘no’ for an answer when asking him if he needs another player with his Queen who already has two musicians present.
A record made in 1773 exists containing the family coat of arms and the phrase: “Spilari, Fluto; Calopterygo, Tympano. Præcina Castella de Bello Campo.”
The traditional flute is made from wood or ivory (made out of the tusks of elephants). The instrument has six holes in the front as well as one on the back side for the thumb which helps cover additional holes along the body to change notes. It also features a fipple mouthpiece by which air passes across an opening into the chamber containing the reeds / tongues that generate sound through resonance.
By 1776 Mozart had written over 100 pieces with parts specifically designated for flutes: he composed music even after losing his hearing, the most famous of which is the Flute Concerto No. I, K313 (alto flute was not commonly used until the 19th century).
The first major work for the flute in the post classical era was Ludwig Spohr’s Quintet Opus 31 written between 1816 and 1821.
One of the last great composers to write for the flute before it fell out of favor as a concert instrument was Gustav Mahler who wrote five pieces that feature substantial parts or solos for alto-flutes: Symphonies Nos. s Second through Fifth; Das Lied von der Erde; and his unfinished Tenth Symphony (the Adagio movement exists as an early piano sketch and the first, third and fifth movements as a completed orchestral score).
While the recorder and the flute were the most popular instruments in use for the next few centuries, during the renaissance period they began to incorporate more modern inventions such as keys and additional holes.
The 1675 opera L’Orfeo by Claudio Monteverdi features a major basset-horn solo accompanied by strings. This is one of the earliest examples of a piece that would be considered today as accompanying or including an alto-flute part (solo instrument with accompaniment). The following year saw Heinrich Schütz publish his eight volume collection Symphoniae Sacrae containing two works: “Die Elenden sollen essen” includes an unaccompanied alto flute line; while ‘Das ist mir lieb’ includes the same instrument – this time coupled with the basset-horn (see the beginning of the third verse).
The Baroque flute was introduced in the 17th century as a modification of the Renaissance style instrument. The most notable difference between the two instruments is that while earlier forms were made out of wood, later ones are metal or entirely silver alloy.
This period saw many changes to both inside and outside Europe: it also marked several advancements including Jethro Tull’s experimentation with rock band accompaniment on one hand, but Sephardic hazzanut / klezmer music being developed by Eastern European Jews during their exodus from persecution through various parts Europe on the other.
The 18th century saw the flute’s sound change gradually from the Baroque style to the Classical one. Some notable composers of this period are George Frideric Handel, Johann Sebastian Bach, Georg Philipp Telemann and Antonio Vivaldi who all wrote concertos for the instrument.
In 1775 Marianne Davies joined The Philharmonic Society in London as its first female performer playing the Italian Flute (the recorder was still preferred here). Then 43 years later Joseph Haydn composed “Farewell” Symphony No. 45 which has an alto-flute part played by a guest artist at the very end of the piece before the musicians leave on their journey home – probably not coincidentally soon after it opened the Esterházy Concert Hall the previous year.
The classical era saw the flute’s popularity decline as the clarinet family rose to prominence with Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Carl Maria von Weber and Ludwig van Beethoven all dedicating works to the instrument during this time period (the Basset Horn similarly became more popular). Ludwig Spohr wrote his Octet for Strings Opus 32 in D major which includes an unaccompanied alto-flute part that is also included in two of his cantatas – one written the next year entitled “Die Liebe der Danae” where it plays a solo; the other titled “Christus und die Nachtigall” composed 23 years later has obbligato parts for the flute and the clarinet.
The Romantic era saw the alto-flute become more popular due to composers such as Gioachino Rossini, Franz Schubert, François Devienne, Carl Maria von Weber (including his Konzertstück Opus 79) – many of which were also virtuoso performers on the instrument. Hector Berlioz wrote a number of works that feature the basset horn including “Harold en Italie” where it plays solos; while Robert Schumann’s piano quintet in E flat major includes an unaccompanied part for the same instrument.
In 1837 French composer Hector Berlioz composed Symphonie Fantastique where the Basset Horn plays the melody since the Alto-flute is the protagonist.
The pied piper of hamelin is the protagonist in the symphonie fantastique by hector berlioz . the pied piper of hamelin is the protagonist in the symphonie fantastique by hector berlioz.
The flute was the first instrument to be used in space by NASA missions during the 1960s.
History of Music and Magic
Musical magic has been a part of music since long before the days when Orpheus played his lyre to make trees dance (and even longer than that, as we will soon see). The idea behind magical music was simple: if certain sounds could be made with musical instruments or by singing specific notes in a special way, then they would produce real-world effects such as stopping storms or making people fall asleep. This concept can be seen throughout human history all over the world.
Many cultures believed that music had the power to influence people’s behavior, shape their emotions, represent their feelings or manage the potential of supernatural forces around them—as demonstrated by the positive effect it has on health (see Music Therapy). Over time different types of music have been discovered which could alter mood states among individuals without any type of verbal communication whatsoever: other than through song lyrics themselves which were usually metaphorical rather than literal stories about what happened in real life. People understood that music did not need words; they knew that certain songs could put humans into a trance-like state where one would forget al
The pied piper story is one example among many others from different cultures where this belief. In Greek mythology for instance the Sirens were the source of the belief that music had the ability to change people’s moods, behaviors and even physical make-up. The idea was so entrenched in society at the time that Socrates often spoke out against it. He believed it led the youth astray because they became enchanted by sounds and rhythms which made them feel like doing irrational things (like partying all night instead of studying for school).
The Pied Piper in the 21st Century
On its website, the modern city of Hamelin continues to promote the Pied Piper tale and possible origins of the narrative. The city’s link to the story is so powerful that, in 2009, it held a tourist fair to commemorate the 725th anniversary of when the town’s original children vanished. The Rat Catcher’s House is a popular stop for tourists, despite the fact that it has nothing to do with the legend. Because of earlier inscriptions on its façade mentioning the tale, the Rattenfängerhaus is instead linked to the narrative. The home was erected in 1602 and 1603 after completion. It is now a Hamelin City-owned restaurant with a Pied Piper theme throughout. The Hamelin City Hall also sells rat-themed items, including a board game named after the city.
Each year, the city commemorates June 26 as “Rat Catcher’s Day,” in addition to the most recent achievement festival. The day is also known as “Smooth Rat” in Japan and has been promoted by a special bus tour during which participants learn about the history of rats and how people (and cats) deal with them.