About a life devoted to the love for Folklore, Mythology, Legends and.....Art

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Tell me a story; Inês de Castro

It took a little bit longer then planned but here it is; the next drawing and story for the Tell me a story project!
This is one of the most tragic love stories I have ever heard, absolutely heartbreaking but very beautiful at the same time.

I am a true romantic at heart so this story was a real treat to work on. Michele, who made the submission, told me she visited the graves of the two lovers, the main characters in this story.
She also told me that part of this story is actually true and that the lives of these two lovers are depicted on the marble coffins where they lay to rest. The truth in part of this story makes it even more tragic.

I can only hope the lovers are reunited after death and that their souls may never be parted again.
If the Dutch proverb is true they might be together now, as the saying goes: "liefde overwint alles" (love overcomes all), maybe even death.....

NOTE: would you also like to see your story get illustrated? please check out my previous blog post here and read the guidelines.

(click picture for bigger view)

Story Title: Inês de Castro
Submitted by: Michele Mendonça
Country: Portugal

Once upon a time, in the Kingdom of Portugal, a true love story marvelled and shocked the hearts of all.

It all started when the prince, heir to the crown, married a Portuguese princess, fell in love with a beautiful Spanish maiden named Inês de Castro, who had just arrived in court to be the queen's maid.

So strong was the love he felt for her and so in love she found herself since the day she first saw him that they started to meet in the secret places of the castle and on the beautiful gardens and fields and hills of the kingdom. Not only tree and river, moon and light witnessed the fire and passion between these two, so in love, but soon peasants and warriors alike took a notice of such joy as well. And before long the news of this forbidden love reached the ears of the king himself. Now the king was not happy, oh he wasn’t! He ordered his son to stop seeing this woman. But the prince didn’t. He had found true love and promised her they would always be together, forever.

One day the sad news of the princes's death spread throughout the kingdom and all took pity on her. The prince was disturbed with her death but inside of him a joy and a hope was born with the thought of him marrying Inês, so big was his love. He asked his father the king, he begged. And three times he was refused. Three times his dream was shattered. The King forbade him to ever see Inês again as she was not a suitable wife for the future King to be.

The prince's sadness grew but he never stopped meeting beautiful Inês. How could she not be the one for him, just because she was not Portuguese, he asked himself. He believed they were meant to be together. They were secretly happy and soon fathering children. When the rumour of these children reached the King's ears he became afraid that the future of the Portuguese crown would be in risk. So the King ordered the murder of Inês de Castro.

And so the legend tell us that when the prince heard of Inês death, his heart sunk into such pain and despair that he declared war against his own father. He stated that he had secretly married Inês so it was his wife who was murdered while she should have been the lawful queen. He then had her body exhumed and in a macabre ceremony of love, death and loyalty he forced his entire court to swear allegiance to her as a queen and kiss her lifeless hand.

And so they all did. And it is told that the Prince made a promise that they would be together till the end of the world so they were both buried, together in exquisitely sculpted marble coffins depicting scenes of their lives. And this is true for I have seen the graves myself. According to the legend, at the Last Judgment, Peter and Inês will look at each other as they rise from their graves.

1 comment:

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