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PostPosted: 05 Feb 2015 10:10 
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This poem tells us about the town of Hamelin which was full of rats. With the help of his magic flute, the Pied Piper is able to get rid of rats and have them all drown. The people are delightful and they forget to pay the man. He promises revenge and soon all the town’s children miraculously disappear. So the morality of this poem is very easy to be deciphered: you always have to keep your promises. What I find interesting in this poem is the position of the rich members of community (represented by the Mayor and Corporation). It seems that even before having this problem of rats, the authority was not concerned about the needs of population. They did not contribute to their progress until the mass threatens them with rebellion. What is worse is that the authority doesn’t keep its promise, it betrays the Piper. The Mayor is presented very ironical. He doesn’t have the appropriate qualities to rule a town: 'The Major was dumb, and the Council stood as if they were changed into blocks of wood', 'looking little though wondrous fat/ Nor brighter was his eye, nor moister /Than a too-long-opened oyster’. These lines mock his appearance and illustrate his voracious habit.
Besides this, I liked very much the position of Pied Piper. I believe that he was not so dissapointed because of money, but because his work wasn’t appreciated and was treated as a tool. The Pied Piper seems to be the represention of all artists that are not understood by society. He is very remarkable not for his magical sides but because he is able to charm the audience with the profundity of his musical talent. I think that the children were not under a spell. I believe that because of their innocence/purity they were able to see the message of the song, they were able to apreciate the artist and to believe in a better worl that was promised to them. His position in top of the mountain resembles heaven from a magical perspective. This made me thought that maybe the Piper did not do this out of revange but because he wanted to save the children from the selfish villagers and put them in another/perfect/magical world.
The third element that gain my attention were the images of the only one rat and child that were supposed to tell this story for the rest of their lives. I have found the same image in The Rime of the Ancient Mariner by Coleridge. The protagonist was cursed to repeat the story during all his life and he did not fell free from the agony of his guilt until the story was told, over and over again.


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PostPosted: 05 Feb 2015 21:43 
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Don't forget about the versions of "The Pied Piper" in which the children were drown like the rats,/in which the children were brought back after the mayor had payed a couple of times the amount of money initially asked/ or in which three children were left behind: one was deaf and couldn't hear the music/ one was blind and couldn't see where he was going/and one was lame and couldn't follow them quickly enough....then although the moral of the story remains, in which one should definetely keep one's promise,and the fact that maybe children were saved from the villagers, we can realize that only the ones who can keep up with the rest of the "herd" are able to "dance after one's music", otherwise if you don't keep up, you'll be left behind.... Then the question is: Is this a lesson only for villagers? or is it one for children too???? :?: :idea:


Last edited by Maria Maris on 08 Feb 2015 21:55, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: 08 Feb 2015 17:08 
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Did you know that the story is based on real events ? "In the year of 1284, on the day of Saints John and Paul on June 26, by a piper, clothed in many kinds of colours, 130 children born in Hamelin were seduced, and lost at the place of execution near the koppen." Lueneburg manuscript (c 1440- 50) :o My goodness, I don't wanna even think about this!


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PostPosted: 10 Feb 2015 22:26 
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Joined: 21 Jul 2011 18:51
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Cosa Anca wrote:
...It seems that even before having this problem of rats, the authority was not concerned about the needs of population. They did not contribute to their progress until the mass threatens them with rebellion. What is worse is that the authority doesn’t keep its promise, it betrays the Piper. The Mayor is presented very ironical. He doesn’t have the appropriate qualities to rule a town: 'The Major was dumb, and the Council stood as if they were changed into blocks of wood', 'looking little though wondrous fat/ Nor brighter was his eye, nor moister /Than a too-long-opened oyster’. These lines mock his appearance and illustrate his voracious habit.

... The Pied Piper seems to be the represention of all artists that are not understood by society. He is very remarkable not for his magical sides but because he is able to charm the audience with the profundity of his musical talent. I think that the children were not under a spell. I believe that because of their innocence/purity they were able to see the message of the song, they were able to apreciate the artist and to believe in a better world that was promised to them....

... His position in top of the mountain resembles heaven from a magical perspective. This made me thought that maybe the Piper did not do this out of revenge but because he wanted to save the children from the selfish villagers and put them in another/perfect/magical world.

...the only one rat and child that were supposed to tell this story for the rest of their lives. I have found the same image in The Rime of the Ancient Mariner by Coleridge. The protagonist was cursed to repeat the story during all his life and he did not fell free from the agony of his guilt until the story was told, over and over again.


Excellent approach, Anca! Many fascinating ideas here. I liked our interpretation of the Pied Piper as an Artist rather than a Conjuror, as well as the parallel with Coleridge's Ancient Mariner. The Pied Piper as a saviour of the children is also a compelling perspective.

And, thank you, Anca, for having started so energetically all these new threads that seem to have inspired your classmates!


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