Part 5

Tales & Legends

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Nuremberg, Germany

A Nuremberg legend: Raubritter Eppelein (Robber-Knight Eppelein)


It’s the most famous fairy tale of Nuremberg. We created a comic to tell the story to our exchange students. See the whole comic here.

Fundão, Portugal - The Festa das Papas (Maize porridge pilgrimage)

  • Festa das Papas (Maize porridge pilgrimage) in Póvoa da Atalaia, Fundão. Every third Sunday in January, the village prepares to cook the maize porridge (papas de carolo) and receive thousands of visitors. Everything began with a legend.


(Aspect of the pilgrimage in Póvoa da Atalaia, photo from Fundão the local newspaper, “Jornal do Fundão)

The maize porridge legend and the recipe of “Papas de Carolo”

To watch a video about this legend and associated traditions, go here!


According to the legend, a long time ago, there was a very serious plague of grasshoppers in the region. Everything farmers cultivated was eaten by the grasshoppers. The farmers asked Saint Sebastian to help them getting rid of those insects. They promised they would build a chapel in his honor and, yearly, each third Sunday of January, they would make a pilgrimage there. In this pilgrimage, farmers promised also they would distribute white maize porridge (papas de carolo) freely, as well as fritters, to all the local inhabitants. The grasshoppers disappeared...

Where and when does it happen?

The pilgrimage happens next to Saint Sebastian chapel in Póvoa da Atalaia (Fundão) parish, each third Sunday of January.


Ingredients for 4 persons:


First: “wash” the "carolo". How do I usually do it? Just pour the referred amount of “carolo” into a bowl and open the water tap. Stir the “carolo” with your hand or with a soup spoon for a while. Then, very carefully pour the water out. Be carefully to avoid throwing out the "carolo" itself. The idea is that the kind of a very fine “flour” that will come on the surface of the bowl water is thrown away and the “clean carolo”, the "heavy corn flour" remains in the bottom of the bowl. Do this as many times as you wish till it seems to you the “carolo” is cleaned of that “fine flour” or other parts that aren't as yellow as the "carolo" is supposed to be. You will find some small black dots. Not a problem if all these small black dots don't go way at all.

At the same time you do this, you must have already heat a water pan. A considerably large pan to avoid you burn your hands when it boils. Attention: the water you heat in the pan must be x 4 the number of carolo cups you have used. So, if you decide to use 3 small/medium cups of “carolo”, you must heat 12 small/medium cups of water. Put inside the water 1 tea spoon of salt, a stick of cinnamon and the peel of half an orange. (no problem if you don't use the cinnamon stick. I use it because I think the final product gets better. But the orange peel is absolutely necessary).

When the water in the pan begins to boil, just pour slowly the “washed carolo” you had in the bowl and, since this very moment, you have to start stirring the pan content, preferently with a wooden spoon. Ok, you may use a silicone stirring spoon! Never stop stirring it or the “solution” may begin to stick into the pan bottom and burn!

You must feel the solution becomes more thick. Let it cook for 2 or 3 minutes and never stop stiring. Gradually add the milk. At least 0,6 liters. Now you decide: if you want your “papas” soft as a pudding, put the rest of the milk up to 0,80 or 1 liter. If you want them more consistent in such a way you can cut it in slides when they are cold, don't add more than 0,6/0,7 liters of milk and let it boil for longer time. After adding the milk, add the sugar at once and, remember, keep stiring always and always. Let the solution boil again. When you feel it has the consistency you desire, take the pan off the heat. Profit the moment everything is hot to pour the “papas” into dishes, plates or individual cups. If you let them go cold inside the pan, you have a problem... you'll have to eat them from the pan which isn't really very aesthetic or elegant... :-)

Decorate the dishes, plates or cups with powder cinnamon (absolutely necessary) and wait until they are cold.

Serve chilled and delight yourself and friends.

The blossoming almond trees legend

The almond trees legend is one of the most known legends in Portugal, particularly in the South. Our Comenius students decided to spread it among our partners and even made some strips of it. They took it to the Belgian meeting in October 2014 and it was a success. Thanks teacher José Luís Oliveira for your help. You can print and download the strips here.




Ülemiste lake Elder (Tallinn)

Every year sometimes during autumn, when the nights are long and dark, an old man from the lake Ülemiste comes to the Gates of Town (Viru Gates) and asks from the guard of town, if the town is completed yet. The guard shall always answer, that town is not completed yet, many constructions are still going on and asks the old man from lake Ülemiste to come back next year. The Legend says that if the old man should ever know that town is completed. The Lake Ülemiste rises over and Tallinn will be drowned.[1]

miks Tallinn valmis ei saa.JPG

Comic created by Jekaterina Kulik.

Dawn and Twilight

God had two faithful servants a boy called Koit, which means Dawn and a girl called Hämarik, which means Twlight. Their task was to ensure that there was light on the earth. God said, ''I trust you both. You, Twilight, have to take care of the setting sun and you, Dawn, have to look after the rising sun''.

Twilight gaves sunlight on the moment of sunrise to dawn. Dawn gaves sunlight on the moment of sunset to Twilight.

According to an Estonian legend, two lovers, Twilight and Dawn meet briefly and exchange a kiss. It happens when we have the lightest and shortest night in Estonia in June on St. John's Eve (June the 23th).

Why is it so?

God had noticed Dawn and Twilight meeting on that night and told them to be happy and live together. But Dawn and Twilight answered ''NO!'' and said that they want to be in love forever and meet only in june when there is the shortest and lightest night in Estonia.[2]

Koit ja Hämarik.JPG

Comic created by Katrin Klemets.


Lange Wapper - Antwerp

At the foot of the ‘Steen’ (‘Stone’) castle, where Antwerp began, is the statue of one of Antwerp’s most colourful legendary figures, called ‘Lange Wapper’.  He specialised in scaring and terrorising people, e.g. by starting out normal and then suddenly growing to giant size, or on the contrary, shrinking down to a baby. Here is one of the legends about him:

Near the biggest central square of Antwerp called ‘Groenplaats’ -’Green Place/Square’ once lived a woman who had no less than four lovers.  One evening she had invited them to visit her, at four consecutive moments.  But Lange Wapper had heard about this, and took on her shape to welcome the lovers.  The first one had to prove his love by going to sit on the big cross at the cemetry for two hours.   The second one had to lie in a coffin below the cross for two hours. The third one was instructed to knock on the coffin and wait until she came to get him. The fourth one’s job was to walk around the coffin with a long chain.

When lover number four arrived with his chain, he found the other three dead. The first had been so startled by the second one starting to come out of his coffin, that he had fallen off the cross, Then the second got a heart attack when the third one knocked on his coffin. The third one thought the devil had come to get him when he heard the rattling chain.  And the fourth one went mad, jumped into the river Scheldt and drowned.

Created by Yann Cadoret, 5th form


The swans at the Minnewater in Bruges

Maximilian I of Habsburg acquired the Low Countries through his marriage to the last remaining heir of the powerful house of Burgundy, Mary.  According to legend, one of his deputies called ‘Lanchals’ (‘Long Neck’) was murdered in Bruges. As a punishment, Maximilian made the Bruges City Council swear an oath that they would keep and protect swans (birds with long necks) at the ‘Minnewater’ lake in the centre of town for all eternity.  legends_minnewater.jpg

When the Comenius partners visited Belgium, there was a huge row going on about a black swan that had appeared out of nowhere among the normally snow-white Bruges swans that are indeed still there.  The City Council, who apparently have nothing more urgent to discuss, decided that the Black Swan had to be removed, because ‘who knows what diseases it will bring’ to the native swans.  The City Services were mobilised to give chase, but the elusive bird refused to be caught. This started a small revolution among the political opposition, plus citizens and tourists alike. The animal was baptised ‘Burilda Lanchals’ (see above for that family name), this Facebook page  quickly boasted a small army of ‘likers’, and the City Council didn’t know how to handle the situation any more.  As is often the case, the situation lasted so long that it resolved itself: suddenly the black swan disappeared without leaving a forwarding address.  Conspiracy theories abounded about which low strategies the cruel City Personnel had used to trap ‘Burilda’, but as yet, no one knows what has happened to her.


Burilda Lanchals

[Source: VTM nieuws 27/08/2014 - 17:21]


How the Atomium was created



There are more than 10 legends related to Zlotow and its region. The most famous one is entitled KRAJNA ZLOTOWSKA.

Click here to read the legend followed by a cartoon strip

The cartoon strip presenting the legend was created by Adriana Igman:


Click here to read the legend

[1]Kreutzwald, Fr. R. (2003). Paiklikud ennemuistsed jutud. Tallinn : Varrak

[2] Faehlmann, Fr. R. (2003). Muistendid. Tallinn : Varrak