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Hukumusume fairy tale collection > Classical stories of the world > December

Christmas bell

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An illustrationト01 All rights reserved
クリスマスの鐘 イラスト01 アメリカの昔話 福娘童話集 イラスト転用禁止

 Once upon a time in a small town in America, there was a big church.

An illustrationト02 All rights reserved
クリスマスの鐘 イラスト02 アメリカの昔話 福娘童話集 イラスト転用禁止

 The church had a tower soaring heavenward. In the church, a splendid bell was hung.

An illustrationト12 All rights reserved
クリスマスの鐘 イラスト12 アメリカの昔話 福娘童話集 イラスト転用禁止

 There was a mysterious legend that the bell “rings only on the night before Christmas.”
 However, no one ever heard the bell ringing.
 Whenever Christmas came around, people in the town looked up at the tower and said to each other.
“This will be the year that we hear the bell ringing, perhaps?”

An illustrationト03 All rights reserved
クリスマスの鐘 イラスト03 アメリカの昔話 福娘童話集 イラスト転用禁止

“I am 80 years old but I have never heard it.
“I hear, my grandfather once heard it when he was a child, and it was a beautiful sound.”
“How can we get the bell ringing?”
“They say, if you bring a gift to the God, the bell will ring.”

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クリスマスの鐘 イラスト04 アメリカの昔話 福娘童話集 イラスト転用禁止

 Meanwhile, in a little village at the edge of the town, a boy called Pedro and his little brother lived.

 One day, Pedro said to his little brother.
“They say, the church on Christmas is very busy and lively.”
 His little brother’s eyes shone, and he begged Pedro.

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クリスマスの鐘 イラスト05 アメリカの昔話 福娘童話集 イラスト転用禁止

“Wow, I wish I could go there.”
“OK, I will take you there.”
 Pedro promised to his little brother.
 They waited and waited, and now, it was the night before Christmas.

An illustrationト06 All rights reserved
クリスマスの鐘 イラスト06 アメリカの昔話 福娘童話集 イラスト転用禁止

 Pedro and his little brother held hands tightly and headed to the town.
 When they came to the entrance to the town, they saw a woman lying on the ground.

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クリスマスの鐘 イラスト07 アメリカの昔話 福娘童話集 イラスト転用禁止

“What is wrong with her? She is not moving. What can we do, Pedro?”
“If we leave her now, she will freeze to death. Oh, what can we do.”
 No one was around them.
 Pedro took a silver coin out of his pocket. He handed it to his little brother.

An illustrationト08 All rights reserved
クリスマスの鐘 イラスト08 アメリカの昔話 福娘童話集 イラスト転用禁止

“This silver coin is a gift to the God. I will help her so you will go on your own.”
“What, am I going on my own? Pedro, you really wanted to go too, didn’t you.”
“Don’t worry. Now, you go.”
 His little brother had no choice but to go into the town on his own.
 The church was busy and lively with many people.

An illustrationト09 All rights reserved
クリスマスの鐘 イラスト09 アメリカの昔話 福娘童話集 イラスト転用禁止

 Everyone brought gorgeous gifts to the God, and they all looked proud.
 Sparkling, and brightly shining jewelry.
 A mountain of gold coins.
 Gorgeous silverware.
 Everyone was trying to get the bell ringing by bringing wonderful gits.
 However, the bell never rang.
“This will be the year that the bell rings!”

An illustrationト10 All rights reserved
クリスマスの鐘 イラスト10 アメリカの昔話 福娘童話集 イラスト転用禁止

 Eventually, the King brought his gold crown that is his most important thing after his own life.
(This must be good enough. Now, the bell will ring.)
 Everyone stayed still and tried to listen carefully.
 Still, the top of the tower was entirely silent.

An illustrationト11 All rights reserved
クリスマスの鐘 イラスト11 アメリカの昔話 福娘童話集 イラスト転用禁止

“Alas, even the King’s gold crown is not good enough.”
“Probably, that bell will never ring forever.”
“Yes, it must be so.’
 People gave up and began to leave. It was when they heard

An illustrationト12 All rights reserved
クリスマスの鐘 イラスト12 アメリカの昔話 福娘童話集 イラスト転用禁止

 Ding-Dong, Ding-Dong …
 Out of the blue, the beautiful bell sound echoed from the tower.
“Oh! The bell is ringing. Ringing at long last!”
“What a beautiful sound.”
“Anyway, someone brought such a special gift that the bell rang. Who was it?”
 People, let alone the King, turned around all at once.

An illustrationト13 All rights reserved
クリスマスの鐘 イラスト13 アメリカの昔話 福娘童話集 イラスト転用禁止

 Pedro’s little brother was standing there shyly.
“My elder brother left me with a silver coin. I just brought it to the God.”
 The little brother told them so.
(The woman Pedro helped with should be all right.)
 That is what the little brother thought then.

 A wonderful gift is not necessarily something expensive.
 Even when it is a little gift, as long as the gift carries warm heart of the sender, it is good enough.

An illustrationト14 All rights reserved
クリスマスの鐘 イラスト14 アメリカの昔話 福娘童話集 イラスト転用禁止

 Merry Christmas

The End

Bonus illustration All rights reserved
クリスマスの鐘 おまけイラスト アメリカの昔話 福娘童話集 イラスト転用禁止

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     12月25日の豆知識

366日への旅
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