The Army in Schrattenberg


 Posted in 2023
 Catagories: 📜 Folklore

The mysterious army leader and his warriors sleep at the tables. by Ted Tschopp and Midjourney
"The Mysterious Army Leader Sleeps" by Ted Tschopp and Midjourney

Sagen, Customs, Legends from the five places Lucerne, Uri, Schwyz, Unterwalden, and Zug, Lucerne, Volume 1, Page 293

by Alois Lütolf

Lucerne 1865

The Army in Schrattenberg

They call the “thunder” around Gurnigeln, Escholzmatt. The people imagine that this thundering or cannoning comes from Gurnigel, a name they use not only for the well-known mountain in the Bern region but also for the Schrattengebirge.

Once in the fall, a shepherd drove his herd from the alp to Schratten and noticed that he was missing a sheep, but he could not find it anymore. His astonishment was great when, during the next ascent, the lost sheep came to him so well-fed and happy. However, it did not want to feed with the rest of the flock, and it was clear that this pasture was no longer good enough for it, and it knew a better one. The shepherd thought he would find out what was going on, kept his eye on the sheep, and followed its paths. It went to a rock cave and then along a long, large corridor into an unmeasurable hall, sparkling with bright crystals, where the most beautiful warhorses stood, countless in number. The sheep had been well-fed there for a long time. While walking around, he came to a high, proud gate that sprang open with a light touch and presented a magical view to the surprised eye. Another hall, full of gold and gemstones, shimmered and sparkled, extended its bright spaces far into the distance, and many beautiful and well-equipped warriors sat and slept at magnificent tables. In the back, opposite the gate, the army leader rested at his table. He now raised his head and asked another officer seriously and dignifiedly, “What time is it?” - “One thousand eight hundred and thirty!” was the answer. “So we must wait another 45 years,” said the first and continued to sleep. The shepherd now thought about retreating. Although he had the idea that the subterranean beings could easily spare some handfuls of their immeasurable treasures of gold and diamonds, he decided first to consult his pastor. He carefully noted the entrance and left the sheep behind for the time being. Later he returned to take as many of the wonderful things as possible. Too late, the hole was no longer to be found, and the sheep never appeared again.