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The Devil's Bridge At Lake Galenbeck


Karl Bartsch gave the following Devil bridge story in his 'Tales and legends and traditions of Mecklenburg' (Sagen, Märchen und Gebräuche aus Meklenburg) published in 1879.

In Lake Galenbeck (in the vicinity of Friedland) there is a tongue of land, probably artificial, that stretches about to the middle of the lake. It is called the devil's bridge, and is said to be the remains of a bridge started, but never completed, by the devil.

A shepherd had to drive his herd completely around the lake in order to reach his pasture. This annoyed him, and one day he wished with a curse that a bridge went across the lake. He had scarcely uttered this wish when a man appeared before him. The man promised to build a bridge in one night, before the rooster crowed three times, under the condition that the shepherd would then belong to him. The shepherd entered into this agreement.

That evening when he arrived home, he told his wife what had happened. She said nothing, but at midnight she went to the chicken coop and awakened the rooster, who thought that it was already morning, and crowed three times.

The devil heard this. He was not finished with his work, and angrily flew off through the air without completing the bridge.


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